Motorists in Harborough are becoming increasingly concerned about the number of potholes in the town’s roads.
The Mail has heard several complaints from drivers over the last week who are all reporting an alarming rise in the number of road defects.
Jez West, of Harborough, sent the Mail an astonishing picture (inset) of his colleague George Norton standing nearly knee-high in a pothole in Hearth Street.
He reported it to Leicestershire County Council’s highways department and it has since been repaired, but motorists are worried because the repair job is already showing signs of breaking up.
An alloy wheel on Mr West’s camper van was also damaged recently and he thinks is was probably caused by one of the many potholes around town.
He said: “It has got to be down to the potholes and I think the county council should be telling us what they’re going to do about them.”
Aside from the huge pothole in Hearth Street, Mr West has also seen several ruts along Farndon Road near the new David Wilson Homes housing development.
Meanwhile, Harborough resident Rob Johnson also got in touch with the Mail about a pothole in Fernie Road (main picture), near to its junction with Dingley Terrace, which was responsible for blowing out a tyre on his Volkswagen.
Commenting on social media website Twitter last Thursday, Mr Johnson said: “Any chance you guys can step up pothole campaign please? I became another victim tonight in Harborough. Blew my front tyre.”
On Monday, he added: “You can pretty much choose roads randomly. My nemesis was Fernie Road. Trip up to NottsVW for new wheel.”
And later, he said: “I’m sitting in VW as we speak, waiting for new alloy wheel. I’m told it’s buckled.”
Also commenting on Twitter, Harborough resident Erica Whiteman said on Saturday: “Potholes around town are out of control lately.”
She added: “Just drive around town. You can’t miss them. I counted over ten on my route from Northampton Road to Gores Lane.”
The county council admits there has been a rise in potholes lately and is putting it down to thew weather.
But it emphasised that people must report any potholes they see so they council can do something about them. The council classifies potholes as either urgent or non-urgent and aims to fix urgent road defects within three days.
Peter Osborne, Leicestershire County Council’s cabinet member for transport, said: “The much higher level of rainfall we have experienced this winter has created some challenging conditions which has in turn had an impact on the road surface.
“Our teams have been working hard to identify and repair any potholes that are reported to us.
“We welcome the public’s support to help bolster our routine inspections on the highways network as this has helped to identify many of the 3,240 potholes we have repaired in the last three years.
“If anyone encounters any potholes, then please report them to us.”
News of the pothole proliferation comes a few weeks after the Mail reported a pothole court victory for Harborough couple Jane Tramontana and Phillip Charles.
They took Northamptonshire County Council to court after Jane’s car hit a dangerous pothole in Sutton Bassett last January. The council refused to pay for the damages caused to Jane’s car but the couple fought the decision through the small claims court and won in January this year.
To report a pothole in Leicestershire, phone the county council’s customer contact centre on 0116 305 0001.
For Northamptonshire, call 0300 126 1000.
Story by Alex Blackwell
Follow Alex on Twitter, @BlackwellHarb.