National Pothole Day

Like the Great British weather, the condition of our roads is a perennial cause for complaint, but unlike the weather we can all do something about the potholes on our roads.

Street Repairs, the people behind the online pothole reporting website and smart phone app, have organised National Pothole Day to try and galvanise people into action, encouraging them to report potholes that they encounter on their local roads.

We come across potholes and other defects on our roads every day, but many of them go unreported. A small pothole can be quickly and inexpensively repaired. However, the same pothole, if left over the winter, will grow in size through repeated freezing and thawing of the water accumulating in it. After just a few months, the pothole will become a safety hazard and will be much more expensive to put right.

To ensure that the roads in West Berkshire remain in a safe and usable condition, the Council carries out routine safety inspections. All public highways are routinely inspected by qualified inspectors who then arrange for repairs to be carried out to address any defects that they find. The frequency of inspection is dependent on the type of road and the traffic using it. On minor roads, these can be quite lengthy, which means that some problems can go undetected for weeks or even months.

Street Repairs makes it easy to report problems on the roads, by providing one website through which residents can submit any issue, to any local council anywhere, any time. Smartphone technology allows residents to report problems in real-time. You can attach photographs and give a detailed description whilst out and about. Updates on the status of your report are sent back to you via email and text message.

There are apps for iPhone and Android and you can also report problems via the website: www.streetrepairs.co.uk. So next time you see a pothole, don’t just mutter under your breath and carry on, take the time to report it and get it fixed!

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Northcroft Lane Link Resurfaced

Northcroft LaneAs reported previously, Spokes has given West Berkshire Council a list of priorities for improving local cycling infrastructure. As you would expect, this included several big schemes like constructing a cycle route on the A4 between Lower Way and Turnpike Road.

However, it also included a number of smaller schemes like resurfacing the western end of Northcroft Lane, which links to the cycle track at the side of Goldwell Park. This may not seem important, but this short stretch of road was so riddled with potholes that it had become quite uncomfortable to cycle on, and we are delighted to report that the Council has just resurfaced this section.

This is just one example of small-scale changes that can be implemented quickly and easily and which make a genuine difference to local cycling journeys. If you have any schemes that you would like us to lobby the Council to implement, then please get in touch. We can either raise it through the Cycle Forum or separately with Council officers.

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Reporting Potholes

It’s at this time of year when most potholes occur. Water gets into cracks in the road surface, freezes and expands, causing the surface to fracture. Large potholes can present a real threat to cyclists’ safety, so it’s important to report defects when you spot them.

Fortunately, there’s a great new website and smart phone app that lets you do this quickly and easily called Love Clean Streets. When you report a problem, they refer it to the appropriate local authorty and then let you know what’s being done about it.

It only takes 40 seconds to make a report. Simply take a photo of the problem with your smart phone (the app will automatically register the location) then choose the report category and submit. It’s that simple! You can then log on to the website to track progress.

You can also use it to report other problems such as missing signs, defective streetlights and overhanging vegetation. We really like this app and would encourage all Spokes members to give it a try.

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