Cotswold 'awful' road where motorists swerve to avoid potholes won't be fixed for two more years

Frustrated Cotswold villagers will have to wait two more years to get an “awful” road resurfaced as motorists are constantly forced to swerve to avoid hitting potholes. Chalford residents are fed up with the state of Old Neighbourhood and question why resurfacing the road keeps getting put back year after year.

Parish, District and County Councillors say they have been working together with residents for many months to make sure Gloucestershire Highways are made aware of the appalling state of the busy access road to the village. A series of questions were put to Gloucestershire County Council chiefs at their full meeting last week.

And it was revealed resurfacing the road is currently scheduled for the 2026/27 programme of works. District Councillor Tricia Watson (G, Chalford) says it is “beyond a joke” how some potholes are only part filled while others are ignored.

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“Meanwhile, county's continued refusal to restrict unsuitable vehicles from using this road continues to erode the edge and escalate the demise of the totally past its sell by date surface." In her written question, she said that “keeping the local garages busy with broken suspension and popped tyres is not the right solution to boost our local economy.”

She asked when the road will get its long awaited resurfacing to stop the dangerous driving to dodge these vehicle wrecking potholes. “I understand from a recent parish meeting it has been scheduled but keeps getting deprioritised year after year, how can the contract be improved to stop this constant downgrading for a main road up to a population of over 6000 people?

District Councillor Tricia Watson says it is “beyond a joke” how some potholes are fondly part filled while others are ignored.
District Councillor Tricia Watson says it is “beyond a joke” how some potholes are fondly part filled while others are ignored. -Credit:Tricia Watson

“A serious accident is waiting to happen.” County Cllr Chloe Turner (G, Minchinhampton), who also tabled a question on the issue, said that she was pleased it has been scheduled but is concerned that 2026 is a long time to wait.

“That’s a long way off for residents whose cars are being damaged and who are put in danger by erratic driving on the part of those trying to avoid the hazards,” she said. And Chalford resident Tony Leach recently attended the parish meeting to plead with them to do all they can to encourage a change of tack with the repair strategy.

"The pothole fills are such poor quality they simply don't last,” he said. “It can't be a good use of funds sending the crews back time and time again to the same area.

“A new approach is needed where we invest in decent quality repairs, across the whole damaged area, to stop this ineffective short term bodge fixing". Highways cabinet member Dom Morris (C, Fairford and Lechlade) said more than 80,000 potholes were filled in the county last year.

Highways chiefs say that while Old Neighbourhood is no longer  suitable for a surface treatment, it does still have residual service life remaining
Highways chiefs say that while Old Neighbourhood is no longer suitable for a surface treatment, it does still have residual service life remaining -Credit:Tricia Watson

This includes 57,000 safety defects and 27,000 non -safety defects through pothole plus and find and fix gangs. He explained that Old Neighbourhood was assessed for surface dressing last year but it was found to have deteriorated.

“It is currently scheduled for 2026/27 resurfacing programme,” he said. “Old Neighbourhood was assessed for Surface Dressing last financial year, however it was found to have deteriorated. Whilst it is no longer suitable for a surface treatment, it does still have residual service life remaining.”