Council gets highways funding boost

Wiltshire Council is to receive an extra £6.663m this financial year following the decision to axe HS2.

It will be followed by the same amount next year, and then there will be a minimum of £208.6 million between now and 2033/34.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, Cabinet Member for Highway Management, has pledged that the funding will help address some of the repair backlog on Devon’s 8,000 miles of roads, the biggest highway network of any authority in the country.

The council will be using some of the money to carry out patching work and other repairs before potholes deteriorate further this winter due to wet and freezing conditions of the season.

The majority of the funding for this financial year will enable us to bring forward resurfacing schemes earmarked within its future works programme.

Councillor Stuart Hughes, cabinet member for Highway Management, said: “This announcement is really good news and this additional funding will help us tackle some of the backlog of repairs on our network. Every penny of this funding will be targeted towards reducing potholes or preventing potholes from forming, and  we’re working closely with our supply chain to ensure there is capacity to respond quickly.

“For years we have been calling for Government to provide us with longer term funding for our roads to enable us to plan maintenance on our network more effectively. The indication of the amount allocated over the next ten years is really helpful in enabling us to do that and to develop the most effective use of funding with our partners to improve the condition of our roads.”

The Department for Transport also announced that while the year-by-year amounts beyond 2024/25 have not yet been finalised, the funding level is expected to increase over time.