Despite Oxfordshire County Council having little money to eliminate Banbury’s potholes and invest in road improvements, Mark Cherry, Labour councillor for Banbury Ruscote, is doing his almighty best to improve the situation in his ward.
He has just overseen a 200-metre stretch of complete resurfacing on the A422 Stratford Road between the entrance to the North Oxfordshire Academy and the junction with Warwick Road.
Mark Cherry said, “We all know the roads in Banbury are appalling but I’ve had some local success, which I put down to persistence, four years experience as a councillor and good liaison with County Council Highways’ officers and local developers.
That stretch of road cost £90,000, but the cost has been partly covered by the Bloor Homes Development on the Banbury Rise estate. Developers are required as part of their contract to contribute to basic infrastructure and facilities in the area they are building in.”
In the pipeline is topcoat resurfacing of Trinity Close, Caernarvon Way roads off Edinburgh Way, the end of Edmonds Road meeting Woodgreen Avenue and the end of the Fairway meeting Orchard Way Roundabout.
But despite the efforts of Mark Cherry and other councillors, the countywide pothole problem is still growing because of the continuing effects of cuts to local authorities by central government, and there just aren’t enough out-sourced road gangs to do the work.
Mark Cherry said, “Oxford County council estimate they need up to an additional £300 million to sort the problem but the Conservative government only gave us an extra £1.8 million this year.”