Highways matters continue to be one of our main priorities. We have appointed a Highways Officer (Gerry Stoker) who monitors all faults in the Parish and produces monthly reports for each meeting. We continue to use the Cumbria Highways Fault reporting system to log every fault in the Parish and urge residents to add to our reports using any of the following methods:
We also are in regular contact with representatives from Cumbria Highways.
Over Easter, Sedgwick Parish Council received this Public Position Statement about potholes via our County Councillor Brenda Gray. All faults we are aware of in the Parish have been logged using the system they recommend.
From Cumbria Highways - Winter weather and the impact on the Highway We understand and appreciate the frustration that Cumbrian residents are experiencing. This winter has proven to be a real challenge to Cumbria County Council Highway services. It has been colder and wetter than the previous few years and as a result, there are more road defects and increased pressure on the network. The significant, prolonged wet periods have been closely followed by lengthy spells of cold weather, leading to substantial additional freeze-thaw action and the accelerated deterioration of our roads. This is a situation not unique to Cumbria and many of our neighbouring authorities are having the same challenge. Repairs done at this time of year when roads are cold and wet are less likely to be as effective as repairs done in warmer, drier conditions. There have been very few periods of warmer, drier weather for us to undertake permanent repairs; therefore often the only option available to us, in order to keep roads safe, is temporary work. We appreciate that this has dismayed some customers who expect more but unfortunately, as explained, permanent solutions are not always effective if road temperaturesare low and rather than closing roads, a temporary fix is a more appropriate solution. Our intention is to effect quality permanent repairs as soon as we are out of the winter weather period. Our teams continue to work hard to manage the increased number of defects but the reality is that we need to prioritise carefully. The Council has had to take nearly £200m out of its revenue budgets in the last 8 years – with further cuts still to be made. We simply do not have the money available to invest in all the proactive maintenance we would like or to divert money from other essential council services into our roads. We are grateful when our customers identify and report problems and defects to us but as explained, we are not always able to meet their expectations, particularly when the defect does not fall within our priority specifications. Given the extenuating circumstances and our limited resources, we are doing all we can to keep on top of the damage and ensure the highways are safe for all road users. I would encourage that defects are reported directly on line athttps://www.cumbria.gov.uk/roads-transport/highways-pavements/reporting-problem-on-highway/WDM/iframe.asp?cg=CDH or to the Highways Hotline number on 0300 3032992. This ensures the fault is logged and a unique reference code generated for that particular defect, it also enables the fault to be tracked.
After months of campaigning on a number of highways issues, January 2018 saw progress being made on many fronts…..
Following suggestions from residents about the safety of pedestrians accessing the Village Hall in the dark, we finally met with the highways lighting team and they assessed the situation. Our suggestion of low level solar lighting was ruled out as it would not give out sufficient light but we are extremely pleased that they were able to install a suitable street light so soon after their visit rather than it wait for the new financial year.
The improvements to pedestrian safety at the aqueduct scheduled for October 2017 were cancelled but we have campaigned for the works to be rescheduled. We have been assured that the works will take place at Easter.
Following continued problems with HGV vehicles entering the village and getting stuck in or even under the aqueduct, we have pushed for improvements to signage. We are pleased to report that the signage at all junctions in the village will be refreshed with all warning signs being amended or replaced to highlight the warning signs for the low bridge and Aqueduct at the same time. There will also be a revised sign at Brettargh Holt roundabout to help drivers avoid the low bridges in Sedgwick.
The work to replace the pavements on Hill Close will be completed in the spring – the work to date has seen a huge improvement and we look forward to similar work being carried out in Castle View.
The condition of the roads in the parish continues to be our major highways issue. Work has been carried out on a collapsed drain on Cooper Hill, blocked drains at Force Bridge and Riverside, and temporary repairs are in place at Carex Farm and Raines Hall. We have met with the local Highways Team Leader and the Carex Farm-Crosscrake stretch is under consideration for long term maintenance for the 2018/19 schedule.