Weston’s pavements in ‘disgusting’ condition as man falls in High Street

PUBLISHED: 12:00 07 September 2018 | UPDATED: 12:16 07 September 2018

Marion Holland and her husband John who tripped on the pavement in High Street.    

Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Marion Holland and her husband John who tripped on the pavement in High Street. Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Archant

The condition of Weston-super-Mare’s pavements has been questioned by the wife of a person who fell in the High Street.

The loose and uneven pavement where John Holland tripped. 

Picture: MARK ATHERTONThe loose and uneven pavement where John Holland tripped. Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Marion Holland said her husband, John, fell outside the Walker & Ling department store on August 30.

John, aged 76, was not seriously injured but was shaken by the incident.

The loose and uneven pavement where John Holland tripped. 

Picture: MARK ATHERTONThe loose and uneven pavement where John Holland tripped. Picture: MARK ATHERTON

Marion told the Mercury: “The state of the pavements is disgusting, my husband is perfectly fit and able person, he’s no trolley pusher.

“The paving is all sunken down, he was walking normally then all of a sudden he fell and grazed his ebows and knees.

“Fortunately a man helped him up, it was dreadful and something needs to be done.”

Marion said she knows of two friends who have experienced similar incidents, including one woman who Marion describes as being ‘a fit and agile person’ who broke her arm when she fell outside Tesco supermarket, in Regent Street.

The couple referenced an article published in the Daily Mail on August 25 which found councils across the country can cite Section 58 of the Highways Act 1980, which states they are not liable if they had not previously been alerted about the defect, and if the pavement was scheduled to be repaired at some point in the future.

There have been 10,329 liability claims to authorities in England for trips and slips on pavements during the past 12 months, but only 859 of these have been successful.

Despite this, councils still had to pay more than £2.1million in compensation.

Marion added: “It makes me cross because somebody is going to really hurt themselves one day. You have to look down to make sure you don’t fall in the cracks of the pavements.

“I can only imagine this will get worse the closer we get to winter when the ground becomes more difficult to walk on.

“I do not want the town to go downhill, we want to keep the town nice and the council should be doing something about it.”

A spokesman for the North Somerset Council, which is responsible for road and pavement repairs, said: “This was reported to us and our area officer went out to inspect the area. There is no defect in the paving and from the description given it appears Mr Holland fell in the drain gulley which runs the length of the High Street.

“We hope he is recovering well.”

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