'Past breaking point': Mr Pothole blasts damage on our roads is at 8 year high - 'It's a joke!'

'Past breaking point': Mr Pothole blasts damage on our roads is at 8 year high - 'It's a joke!'
UK roads 'past breaking point' as pothole damage reaches an eight-year high
GB News
Gabrielle Wilde

By Gabrielle Wilde

Published: 19/03/2024

- 08:51

Updated: 19/03/2024

- 08:58

Roads in England and Wales are at "breaking point" due to potholes, with repairs at an eight-year high, according to a new report.

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A Pothole campaigner has slammed the government for not doing enough as the damage to roads reaches a record high.

In October 2023, the government announced it would provide £8.3bn of extra funding for local road improvements. Mark Morrell, who has been dubbed as Mr. Pothole, claimed that this will "only resurface 2.5 per cent" of the roads in the UK.

As well as spending £8.3 billion on fixing the potholes on roads and investing in pothole-fixing vehicles, Prime Minister Rishi Sunak pledged to tackle “the scourge of potholes” with funding for local road maintenance in England.

Speaking to Eamonn and Isabel on GB News Breakfast the UK's best-known pothole campaigner said: "'We have gone past breaking point, you can see that by the state of the roads.

Mark Morrell,

Mark Morrell called out for the government to do more

GB News

"The announcement of the £8.3 billion, enough to resurface five thousand miles of road from the cancellation of the northern leg of HS2, put into perspective, is only enough over 11 years to resurface 2.5 per cent of England and Wales roads.

"Over 20 per cent of roads need major investment and resurfacing now. If we don't do anything in the next fifteen years, 53 per cent of our road network will be structurally unsound and therefore it could potentially be lethal for cyclists and those on two wheels.

"This could cause billions of damage to road users.

"It's a joke. There's no will in authorities to seem to want to do anything about it. A managed decline? I don't accept that.

"I think it's a case of the government haven't focused on the asset that our road network is."

A car driving over a pothole

The government pledged 8.2 billion to try and fix the roads in the UK


The campaigner added: "I get fed up with the weather getting blamed. Other countries have more extreme weather than us. In Scandinavia, for example.

"It's a case where our roads haven't been maintained because a well-maintained road doesn't get affected anywhere near as much by the weather unless the government invests in a multibillion-pound resurfacing program year on year lik ein Japan.

"They need to reinvest some of the over £50 billion that they take in from road users, from all types of taxation into the network."

Depending on their size, potholes can cause significant damage to vehicles and pose a danger to motorists, cyclists, and pedestrians.

Although small potholes rarely cause major accidents, if a vehicle hits a lot of them over time, it can lead to damage to the tires, suspension, and steering system.

Mark Morrell

He claimed that the UK's road are 'past breaking point'

GB News

"I've had some tremendous successes," Morell added: "I want to try and keep on doing my bit, but the appetite of government just isn't there.

"Soon he [The Prime Minister] needs to come out with me for a ride and I'll show in the real problems in our roads.

"He doesn't want to see them because then they'll have to spend money. He'll have to make some promises about all of this.

"It's smoke and mirrors and the games, they spin faster than a Spitfires propeller. I don't accept there's no money. They find money for things that they want to spend money on.

"I disagree with the HS2 it cost £66 billion. It is a railroad track that won't go in central London, which needs to get to Birmingham when our road networks are failing. To me, it's like putting an extension on Ascot subsidence.

"There are loads of examples where government can find money, where it wants to, but it's not a priority for them. On the other side, every time you have a repair on your vehicle they get 20 per cent VAT."

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