ROAD: Defects will be made good

A letter in last week's Northumberland Gazette from Mr Cape drew attention to the state of the new surface after a much-needed road re-surfacing operation that took place last month from the War Memorial down Denwick Lane

I had a look at the road myself and I do concur with Mr Cape’s views about the condition of the surface, which appears to have deteriorated rapidly in places.

As soon as I referred this to Coun Glen Sanderson, the portfolio holder responsible for this service area, the road surface was inspected by highways engineers and found to be showing signs of early wear.

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The micro-asphalt surface that has been used is susceptible to cold and wet weather during laying, and it may be that parts of this new surface were laid in marginal conditions.

Rather than require the contractor to return immediately to this section and deal with it, as we could insist, we intend to wait till the winter months are over and survey the entire stretch to see how all of it has stood up.

The contractor will then be required to return and make good this, and any other sub-standard areas, in milder weather.

We will also inspect other sites where surfaces were laid late in the year and require the contractor to make good any defects that are found.

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I hope Mr Cape and residents take assurance from the swift response by highways engineers that contractors are required to provide value for money and may be instructed to relay surfaces that fail to meet that test.

It is far from typical, and only yesterday I received praise from a resident about the high standard of surfacing just completed on Weavers Way, but we will look at this stretch again in March to ensure it has weathered well.

Gordon Castle,

County Councillor,