Councils are being encouraged to remember pavement potholes when repairing roads – to enable the most vulnerable to feel ‘happier and safer’ using their streets.
Last week (15 Feb), local authorities across England were allocated their share of £500 million to carry out highways maintenance over the coming year.
The funding will go toward ensuring potholes and other road maintenance issues across the country are fixed.
The DfT expects the funding will help fix the equivalent of 10 million potholes – making thousands of local roads ‘both safer and easier to drive and cycle on’.
Living Streets wants local authorities to tackle pavement potholes by using this funding to improve pavements, not just carriageways.
It points to research which suggests that nearly one in three (31%) over 65-year-olds are prevented from walking on their local streets because of cracked pavements, equating to over 3.5 million people.
Mary Creagh, chief executive of Living Streets, said: “Being able to simply enjoy a walk down your own street is currently off limits to millions of older people because local pavements are simply not up to the job.
“Investing in well-maintained and clutter free pavements would help everyone walk more – tackling inactivity, air pollution and isolation. That’s why we are calling for local authorities not to forget pavement potholes and to use a fair share of the funding for pavements.”