All roads lead to same place in pot-hole city

The installation of new lights is nearing completion at the five road junctions of Havelock Bridge, Queens Road, Shoreham Street, Bramall Lane and Harrington Road, Sheffield - 7th August 1968
The installation of new lights is nearing completion at the five road junctions of Havelock Bridge, Queens Road, Shoreham Street, Bramall Lane and Harrington Road, Sheffield - 7th August 1968
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If you’re a road user in Sheffield and it feels like you’ve been moaning about potholes forever, well, perhaps it’s because you have.

As The Star has reported this week, more than 22,000 potholes have been repaired in the city so far with the much-heralded Private Finance Initiative money meant to sort out long-running problems.

That equals nearly 250 miles of road resurfacing and 302 miles of pavements done in two years. Coun Jack Scott, cabinet member of the enivronment on the city council, said that the project, the biggest of its kind ever in the city, is making a huge difference.

But we all could name roads that are still in a dreadful state and annoy us every day that we use them.

As you can see from the pictures on these pages, our roads have worked hard for many years moving a lot of traffic around. The city council seems to always be coming up with new ideas to ease the congestion. Which of course means more roadworks.

Back in 2001, The Star reported that Sheffield was trying to shed its image as ‘pothole city’ by taking on powers to fine utility companies that were taking too long to dig up the roads for repairs.

The then council leader Peter Moore said: “I’m always concerned about the crazy situation where we can lay down a new piece of road, only to have it dug up over a period of time by one utility company after another. One of the biggest problems with our roads is the patchwork quilt effect this creates, leaving a series of ruts.”

Cobblestones were also making a reappearance at the time, as damaged surfaces showed the 19th-century surface underneath many city roads. Over in Barnsley, residents living in 250 unadopted roads in the same year faced the headache of paying out thousands of pounds for repairs before the council would take them on.

In 2004, Rotherham highways chiefs found that roads made up with old steel slag in the 1990s were in serious danger of crumbling.

Roads said to be most at risk included the busy A630 Centenary Way at Canklow, Great Eastern Way at Parkgate, St John’s Avenue at Bramley and Car Hill at Greasbrough. The bill was estimated at £1.2 million. That year, Sheffield City Council was taken to task by financial watchdog the Audit Commission for spending too little on repairs.

n Don’t miss Saturday’s 12-page Retro supplement for a look back at schooldays, news of Sheffielders who made a new life in Canada and an area of the city with a name that came from Scandinavia