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IHE pleased to support the APPG for Better Roads

  • Tuesday September 12, 2023

The All-Party Parliamentary Group for Better Roads has issued a report calling for central government to re-instate effective ring-fencing and multi-year settlements for local road maintenance. The report draws on a review of the Pothole Action Fund (2015/16-2020/21) demonstrating that it was a successful policy which contributed to marked improvements in the overall structural conditions on the local road network – but since its replacement gains made have been lost.

The Pothole Action Fund formed part of a six -year commitment specifically allocated to English local authorities. Highway teams were able to use the secure funding for preventative maintenance and resurfacing works as well as pothole repairs. Analysis for the APPG for Better Roads indicates that this ring-fencing led to a marked improvement in the proportion of the local network classed as being in a ‘good condition’ with 12,377 miles, or 7% of the English local road network, moving into this category during the life of the Fund.

Steve Spender, Institute of Highway Engineers (IHE) Chief Executive, commented: “As can be clearly seen by the content of the APPG for Better Roads report, the previous ringfencing of funds between 2015 – 2021 had a positive effect on the overall condition of the local road network and helped reduced the number of potholes repairs. Unfortunately, since the removal of ring-fencing we have experienced a notable decline in road condition with 8,800 fewer miles classified as good. The IHE supports the call for a ringfenced ‘Better Roads fund’ which would once again aid a longer-term approach local highway maintenance and improve the overall condition of the network.”

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