Footpaths wait goes on

MORPETH councillors were left disappointed after they were told that a priority issue will not be addressed in the year ahead.

Several complaints have been made about the state of many pathways in Lancaster Park, which quickly become flooded during heavy rain.

Some remedial work has taken place beside Curlew Hill, but the town council made dealing with the problem across the whole estate its top priority in the Local Transport Plan for 2013/14.

Now it has received a response from Northumberland County Council that says it can only do so much within the budget available, and other issues of concern were chosen based on its criteria.

In response, town councillor David Parker said: “We should write back with a strong letter because it’s a matter which has concerned Lancaster Park residents and councillors for many years.

“A lot of people in that area are quite rightly angry about the footpaths situation.”

Coun Nic Best added that in the meantime, the county council should enforce the prohibition of parking on pavements in the area to help make sure that they do not get into an even worse state.

In the letter to the town council, Corporate Director of Local Services Barry Rowland said: “Whilst funding for maintenance has increased over recent years, it is insufficient to meet all the need for repairs across the county.

“This inevitably means that decisions on relative priorities of repairs need to be made to make the most effective use of the funds that are available. This is done as objectively as possible, taking into account actual condition, usage and importance, when determining the priorities of maintenance work to be undertaken.”