Is this the worst road in North Somerset?
PUBLISHED: 08:00 13 June 2016 | UPDATED: 09:04 13 June 2016
People living in a North Somerset street say they are ‘afraid’ to walk on pavements near their homes due to the ‘critical’ state of their badly-damaged road.
Wakedean Gardens, in Yatton, has been left to ‘collapse’ since it was built in the 1930s after decades of debate about who was responsible for the land.
The houses were built privately, but the road outside was never brought up to an acceptable standard and North Somerset Council argues the responsibility for the road lies with its private owners.
However, residents say the documents proving the land’s ownership were lost when the area’s boundaries, and ruling local authority, were changed in the 1970s.
Yatton Parish Council has now formed a working group to lobby North Somerset Council into taking on responsibility for the road, as residents cannot afford the £500,000 it could cost to fix it.
In a report into the problem, the parish council said: “Wakedean Gardens is more than a road – it is a community, of lively and independent people. This community is unfortunately situated on a road which is in a critical condition, a road which is not adopted, where there is no clear path to resolution or funding.
“The road is collapsing, the drains are blocked and the infrastructure of the road is falling apart. Large ponds of water collect in the streets and are left to stagnate for days, often making it impossible for elderly and disabled residents to leave the house or for children to be able to play freely in their own environment.”
Parish councillor Rhiannon Prys-Owen has been campaigning for improvements to Wakedean Gardens for several years.
She told the Mercury: “North Somerset’s highways department has inherited a problem not of the making of Wakedean Gardens residents, but of a series of failures by the various highways authorities.
“We now have a situation where the infrastructure has collapsed, children cannot play outside, a young woman with visual impairment cannot walk unaided from her own home and residents with mobility problems are afraid to walk on the footpaths or roads.
“Residents are overwhelmed with the magnitude of what is now a major civil engineering problem. They don’t have the skills or the finances to solve this themselves and shouldn’t be expected to.
“The highways authority has the power to resolve this but there is no political will to do so and in 2016 this is a disgrace.
“North Somerset Council didn’t need to get Banksy to create Dismaland – they have helped create one here in Yatton parish.”
Click this link to find out how you can quiz North Somerset Council’s highways experts about pothole problems in your area.