Horncastle’s highways lottery

Angry councillors in Horncastle have launched a stinging attack on county highways chiefs and accused them of treating the town unfairly.

Town councillors say they share residents’ concerns about the ‘appalling state’ of many roads in the Horncastle area.

And, they have demanded local county councillor Bill Aron tells bosses at County Hall exactly how the town feels.

At a town council meeting last week, Coun Aron was criticised by several town councillors for not providing information or any plans highways officials have to deal with more than 80 registered complaints about roads in Horncastle - ranging from pot-holes to more serious issues.

Coun Aron defended the County Council, saying they were ranked among the top two authorities in the country on highways matters.

Coun Richard Davies - who is responsible for highways at County Hall - made a similar claim when he visited the town council earlier this year.

Coun Davies also stressed that while a new system for reporting road complaints had ‘encountered teething problems’ - the situation would improve.

However, town councillor Maurice Lamb described Coun Aron and Coun Davies’s claims as ‘ridiculous’.

He said: “If Lincolnshire is ranked among the top two in the country, I’d hate to see what those ranked at 10 or 20 are like.

“They (the county council) can’t even repair pot-holes properly.

“They are always telling us that they need to make cuts and save money yet they are throwing money down the pan.

“It’s appalling.”

Town council chairman Brian Burbidge described the state of some roads - and the reporting system - as ‘not fit for purpose’.

He said: “We had Coun Davies here telling us what a wonderful system it is, but patently it is not working.

“The lack of information is not good enough and we are totally dissatisfied with the way were are being treated.

“Would you, Coun Aron, please communicate exactly how we feel to County Hall and report back to us.”

Coun Aron stressed the County Council was ‘doing the best it could’ and said it was not possible for him to supply feedback on so many issues..

Town councillor Matthew Wilkinson said that was not good enough, adding he had checked on the county council website and discovered more than 80 complaints were ‘outstanding’, some dating back for several months.

He said: “People are rightly asking us what is happening and we can’t tell them anything.

“It is your responsibility Coun Aron.”