Roads minister has announced million-pound package of repairs for eastern region


Potholes - Credit: Archant

Drivers and cyclists in the east of the region will benefit from better roads, thanks to a £54.7 million investment in repairs, the roads minister has announced.

The Department for Transport has revealed how the £420 million announced in the budget will be spent, and it brings the total funds for roads in the east for this year to more than £181 million.

Next year (2019-2020), the region will receive more than £128 million from the Local Highways Maintenance and Integrated Transport Block funds, which will go towards repairing roads and investing in small safety, bus priority or walking and cycling schemes.

Roads minister, Jesse Norman, said: “Potholes are a huge problem for all road users, and too often we see issues occurring at the same place time after time.

“That is why the Government is investing more in improving our roads than at any time before - £15 billion between 2015 and 2020 and a further £28.8 billion to 2025. Plus an immediate extra £420 million for potholes and local road maintenance just this year.

“The east will be getting an extra £54 million this winter to keep its roads in good condition to keep drivers and cyclists safe.”

Since 2015, roads in the east have benefited from more than £446 million for highways maintenance, in addition to the A14 bypass between Cambridge and Huntingdon, the recently opened Ely Southern Bypass and improvements to the A414 near Harlow.

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Cambridgeshire and Peterborough also received a £21 million boost from the budget, bringing its Transforming Cities Fund total to £95 million. This fund is designed to improve public transport links to jobs.

Additionally, Norwich has been short listed for the Transforming Cities Fund. It is developing a business plan in a bid for a share of £860 million to make it easier, safer and quicker for people to travel and get to work by funding improved transport connections.

In Cambridgeshire, £6.653 million will go towards helping prepare potholes in the county.

Cambridgeshire County Council’s chairman of the Highways and Community Infrastructure Committee, Councillor Mathew Shuter, said: “Following the announcement from government, we’re delighted to be receiving an extra £6.6m to tackle repairs to our roads in Cambridgeshire. The roads minister has recognised we need extra money this winter to keep our roads in good condition.

“We have learnt from the previous winter and have already made changes to the way we repair the potholes so we’re ready for this winter. Our roads are important to us and we are listening to people’s frustrations by already spending £3m on pothole repairs alongside a programme to resurface roads.

“We have a number of ways to fix potholes, including three of our own dragon patchers that can repair up to 150 potholes a day.”