'It is clearly in state of disrepair but I cannot see how it will ever be prioritised'

A Cheshire East Councillor for Wilmslow East, David Jefferay, is looking for help from residents to get action from Cheshire East Highways on a residential road in Wilmslow that he says is unsafe and urgently needs repairing.

Cllr David Jefferay is calling for Cedarway, off Fulshaw Park, to be resurfaced. This is a small cul-de-sac of 8 houses and the road surface has all but gone as a result of years of no maintenance.

Cllr Jefferay said "Although, many of the town's roads have potholes, I believe Cedarway is on a completely different level. There is no surface for there to be potholes in, the surface is not safe for pedestrians or cyclists yet the residents still have to pay their council tax.

"Its condition was raised with me when I was standing for town council in 2014 but, as a town councillor, there was little I could do because Cheshire East is the Highways Authority. It was raised with me again when I stood for Cheshire East last year because nothing had been done and the condition had further deteriorated.

"It was one of the first issues I raised following the elections in May and I was told that it had been identified for inclusion in this year's work programme. When I chased for an update a few months later I was told that it had been removed from the programme due to other roads being higher priority.

"It was at this point that I started looking into and learning about the criteria for prioritisation."

When deciding which roads require treatment the condition of the roads is firstly assessed and then the following other factors are taken into account:

  • Engineering feedback from Local Highway Officers, Highway Maintenance Teams and Capital Delivery Team Highways teams. 
  • Number of carriageway repairs recorded on each road, identifying roads which are showing deterioration and high revenue repairs. 
  • The needs, priorities and use of the section of highway for all users (motorised and non-motorised). 
  • Level 2 patching works undertaken in the previous year. 
  • Local importance of Road (Strategic Route etc.). 
  • Claims Number of carriageway claims recorded on the road. 
  • Customer service requests (Confirm Enquiries, Petitions, Newspaper/Radio/TV articles.

Cllr David Jefferay added "Cedarway, from an engineering perspective, is clearly in a state of disrepair and this is acknowledged by highways and even the Highways Portfolio Holder, Cllr Brian Roberts, who visited the road and subsequently added his weight to my request for it to be prioritised.

"The problem is that it does not score highly on the other criteria; no work has ever been done on it so it is not recognised as a problem and it is a small cul-de-sac so it is not heavily used and that is not going to change. I cannot see how it will ever score highly enough for it to be prioritised.

"I have therefore arrived at the conclusion that the only criterion that the residents and I can influence is the number of customer service requests. I am therefore encouraging the residents to actively complain and raise awareness of the state of the road.

"Please can I therefore ask that anyone else who lives on Cedarway, anyone who has visited or used Cedarway, anyone who has passed Cedarway or even anyone who has seen it on a map, submits a highway report (every day if you have time) to raise the number of Customer Service Requests.

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Comments

Here's what readers have had to say so far. Why not add your thoughts below.

Alan Brough
Wednesday 29th January 2020 at 10:07 pm
Having just finished re-reading George Orwell’s 1984, I read Cllr Jefferay’s list of criteria with heavy heart and fear for his safety.
Alan Butler
Wednesday 29th January 2020 at 10:43 pm
I wonder how much effort is spent on this 'prioritisation' process compared to fixing roads.
Maria Quin
Thursday 30th January 2020 at 12:57 am
How about the residents of Cedarway getting together and getting some quotes for the resurfacing to be done at their shared expense? Probably banging the head on the wall of the Council asking for their help and this would be an investment which would also help raise the value of the 8 properties on the small road?
Just a thought..........l
Stuart Redgard
Thursday 30th January 2020 at 10:11 pm
After reading Mara Quin's comment I had my own thoughts.

I thought this was an adopted highway and the responsibility of the local authority to maintain and repair. I thought that parts of the council tax precept covered highway maintenance and repair. I thought that you had to have the appropriate authority to carry out work on the public highway.

Does anybody know how I can confirm these?
Diane Holcroft
Friday 31st January 2020 at 3:31 am
Maria Quin great idea but these homeowners are paying taxes and road repairs should be covered by taxes?
David Jefferay
Friday 31st January 2020 at 11:19 am
HI Stuart, yes you are correct. It is an adopted road so there would be all sorts of liability issues if the residents did it themselves.
Alan Brough, thank you for your concern. I do have a big dog for protection but I will start varying my travel routes and checking under my car.
Ade Whitaker
Monday 3rd February 2020 at 10:57 am
I feel sorry for the Cedarway residents - and anyone visiting them. This road is in an appalling state. Cllr Jefferay is doing a good job fighting his constituents corner - but is obviously hitting brick walls. I found the "no work has ever been done on it so it is not recognised as a problem " statement confusing. It sounds like a "catch 22" scenario. Sadly I think other local roads are heading in the same direction - e.g the cul-de-sacs off Stockton Road. There is evidence of the odd pothole being repaired but worst ones being ignored and left to get worse. Are any figures available for how much of our hard earned taxes the council pays out every year in claims for pothole damage? Council tax is feeling more and more like a scam. We hand over money but most of it seems to be spent on working out how to provide less and less services. As well as the potholes we have the drainage being neglected (meaning the roads are under water a lot of the time), the streets are only clean(ish) because of volunteer litter pickers, public transport is falling apart etc. Anyway - rant over!
Manuel Golding
Saturday 8th February 2020 at 7:00 pm
The Cedarway residents have been pleading for years for action on the rapidly deteriorating state of their road. It was first raised with me over 6 or 7 years ago and after it was raised with the previous CEC East ward councillor according to residents. The matter was raised again with me during last May's CEC elections;it was one of the matters I passed to the RoW candidate, David Jefferay. As soon as David was elected he started to raise the issue at CEC Highways. The Council can hide behind "criteria" as often as it likes but the overriding issue is that Cedarway has NEVER had any work done on it in over 40 years to my knowledge, it is about time the responsible people at CEC stirred from their backsides and sanctioned the work required. David is fighting a loosing battle against petty apparatchiks who need to understand we are talking about tax payers, the people who pay their salaries - Cedarway deserves better from its council servants.
Nick Jones
Sunday 9th February 2020 at 10:22 am
Whilst Cedarway needs attention... the state of the main arterial feeder roads is also poor...Alderley Road, Manchester Road, Macclesfield Road... Scrappy Slipshod temporary repairs haven't worked, therefore aren't temporary they are just arent done to any degree of satisfaction... My road is also in an appalling state, albeit not to the extent of Cedarway... but the main roads must take precedent .. and the Ringway Jacobs contract must be reviewed to replace shoddy workmanship FOC... IMO

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