Protests against the “Tory potholes” in Harlow continues

News / Sun 19th Feb 2023 at 08:39am

THERE were a number of protests against the continuing problems of potholes in Harlow.

Labour councillors and concerned citizens returned to First Avenue, where only a few weeks ago, the leader of Harlow Council, Cllr Russell Perrin had pledged action.

But there still appears to be some major craters there as residents across the town count the cost as their tyres are punctured.

Councillor James Griggs (Lab) said: “We got a lot of support from passing cars honking their horns.

“It is now four weeks on and no signs of the immediate action promised by the Tory council leader.”

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47 Comments for Protests against the “Tory potholes” in Harlow continues:

2023-02-19 09:35:27

The roads are shocking but I cannot believe they would be any different under labour - Perhaps Harlow council could withhold the council tax it gives to Essex CC until they are addressed. We pay a lot of taxes in this country, and get very poor return from our politicians and the public sector - so where is it all going ?

2023-02-19 09:47:08

In Harlow pothole problems have existed for over a decade without resolve, yet E C C have boasted about improvements that never matured. Of more reent times damaged road signs that have been demolished have been left on the ground for over a year. Just one example is in Church Langley Way at theTesco roundabout (demolished in 2021). Eight months ago a statement from Essex County Council said " ... been made safe and that as per our policy, the post will remain on site until it is replaced as per our policy". However, E C C have not revealed what that latter part of their policy is - so they must want to keep it secret because of it being so vague. I consider E C C Councillors have merely accepted what staff have told them - without investigation or query regarding the validity of statements. This has to be improved. E C C can't blame Covid or staff shortages because the problems first existed too long ago.

David Forman
2023-02-19 10:23:57

Why are these Labour luvvies not wearing hi-vis vests whilst on the footway alongside the main road? After all, they wore hi-vis in the previous protest. At least they remembered the placards this time. Third time lucky I guess for a properly organised protest!

2023-02-19 10:24:48

Come on Harlow Council. These potholes existed for the whole time useless Labour were in administration. Withhold the Essex share of tax until they fulfill their statutory obligations to maintain the roads.

2023-02-19 10:36:09

Pot holes, footpaths, cycle tracks and Street lighting are real problems and then we find the Council can spend £21 million on a white elephant trying to be shopping centre owners and management. Yes there's the game they play County, local and Government each blaming the other but it's just smoke and mirrors especially all are run by the same political party enriching the rich and foreign speculators and governments on the backs of the workers. Perhaps a red bus with "Get Pot Holes Done" written on the side might work, however, one reflects, it didn't for BREXIT or the nhs! As someone has posted previously rearrange " booze, couldn't, up, organise, a, in a brewery " (as opposed to a party that wasn't a party but a work event)

2023-02-19 10:40:36

The Tories came to power saying they would fix the potholes, conveniently ignoring that fact that it was the Tories themselves in Essex County Council who had responsibility for road maintenance for decades. Harlow's roads are still covered in craters and in places dangerous for cars and pedestrians. Another promise not delivered by Reggie Perrin and his Tory cronies.

Tony Durcan
2023-02-19 10:43:22

Yet another broken promise by the Tories. You won’t trust them to tell you the day of the week. Just remember the regeneration of the town centre is due to start this week according to the ex deputy leaders of Tory run Harlow council. Perrin Perils

2023-02-19 10:50:06

There was a large pothole in riverway. Two weeks ago we took a picture and reported it to Essex county council. They gave us a reference number and 2 days later a team came and fixed it. Simples!

2023-02-19 11:04:48

The sensible thing to do is to withhold Council Tax to ECC until Action is taken.

Bruce Downey
2023-02-19 11:26:39

These potholes are all over the country the whole country is complaining. It must be down to the road surface initially being laid and bodged repairs. I have read somewhere recently the powers that be, have found new and better ways…

Graham Saunders
2023-02-19 11:51:51

Let’s see if Harlow Labour has any conviction or guts. In 10 years they were in office we had potholes and they did nothing. Let’s see if their Councillors would actually support withholding tax to Essex. All noise and bluster. They never did anything.

2023-02-19 12:32:10

Standing by the road, whinging is easy and cheap. Labour never did anything for a decade and let the Town Centre become a run down slum. The present Conservative administration should take on Essex County Council and refuse to pay Council tax until they comply with their duty to repair our roads. You wouldn’t pay a builder who didn’t build. It is an outrage. Hit Essex where it hurts - in their pockets!

James Griggs
2023-02-19 12:44:22

Please sign and share the petition. www.change.org/fixharlowroads

2023-02-19 13:11:52

James Griggs, stop all this Labour cheap publicity like standing by the road waving silly placards and organising meaningless petitions. Stop showcasing. Would Labour support withholding council tax to Essex until they fix the problem? Yes or No?

Dave Benson Phillips
2023-02-19 14:13:22

Ken - "Cheap publicity like standing by the road waving silly placards" What, like Robert Halfon does?

Nicholas Taylor
2023-02-19 14:43:32

I was at a council meeting soon after the Conservatives took control of Harlow Council when a Councillor said that now they were in control they hoped that that there would be better co-operation between HDC and ECC in getting pot holes fix. I feel sure that is why Cllr LeMay was given special responsibility for pot holes. Well that clearly worked .. we have more pot holes than ever before.

2023-02-19 16:02:30

Dave Benson Phillips, do you actually believe that after 10 years of neglect, negligence and decline by Harlow Labour that they are in any position to fix the potholes? It is easy to start petitions and chant from roadside. Didn’t see them doing that when they were on power. They have no plans for Harlow. Their track record would be laughable were it not to the detriment of Harlow residents.

2023-02-19 16:22:27

I am a fan of no political parties but the roads were never this bad under Labour. Now it is atrocious. The tories have managed to ruin the country.

Tony Durcan
2023-02-19 18:50:50

Can we reflect on the reasoning of this demonstration. It was about the public statement made by the current Tory leader of the council that this section of road would be repaired. He assured us it would be starting within a week. That was 4 weeks ago and still nothing. So try and blame history but the simple truth is the leader of the council has lied to Harlow,again. Just like the MP about a new PAH and like his ex deputy who claimed the complete redevelopment of the town centre should have started last week. We’re told the Tories will build new council homes but still after 2 years,not a brick has been laid. This is about exposing the lies we’re told by the Tories. It’s should be about being honest ,if you tell us something is going to get fixed,just do it. Stop treating Harlow residents as fools. Well done to all who made the effort and hope it works

2023-02-19 19:01:59

Think all these people need to get a life! Protesting on a pot hole how childish and pathetic is that! This is why Harlow is such a waste off a town! Attention seeking little children protesting just to get on the news

2023-02-19 21:39:26

these potholes are a serious problem, im a delivery driver in harlow and im shocked i havent had an accident yet thru swerving to avoid these moon craters , there will be a serious accident sooner or later unless the EEC & local council fix them, staple tye roundabout is another fixed then few months later a big hole again, what are they putting in these holes porriage or something, surely in 2023 someone knows of a filler that will last a few years

2023-02-19 22:09:21

In 2008 the RAC praised E C C by saying "We need more innovative schemes like MPH (making potholes history). What might the RAC say today?

2023-02-19 22:17:55

Quote from Harlow Herald 04/12/2008: Heading - "End of the road for potholes? Successful MPH scheme in Harlow." Cllr. Norman Hume said "Essex already has one of the best road networks ... but we can even make it better with this scheme and tackle potholes early". So we know that Cllrs. too often talk nonsense. Maybe that was E C C Press department feeding the Cllr. with false information.

John Curry
2023-02-19 22:53:20

All this slagging off of political grouping does not repair potholes. Might I suggest the following Essex County Council: 1) Make contact with JCB and get their Pothole Pro on hire and get stuck in repairing the appalling state of our roads. 2) Do away all the stupid speed reducing cushions that are the cause of many of the problems. They don't do what they are supposed to do - reduce speeds, but they are the seed of many potholes. Common Essex, I'm nervous about getting on my bike due to the extraordinary growth of potholes in our town. JC

2023-02-19 23:42:04

Cheap electioneering by labour in the run-up to the local elections nothing more

2023-02-20 05:15:22

Im with John on this! The speed humps are the responsibility of Harlow Council and they are in such a state IE bolts sticking up, Rubber so far gone that pieces are loose and position resulting in vehicles speeding knowing they can straddle the humps! Also the roads have massive holes where contractors have dug up and not repaired correctly! Get them back to fix the issues! Or better still have some tarac bins like those that used to have salt in by the side of the road so if the public see a hole they can fill it! On a final note Minchen road was worked on 2 weeks ago and what a joke! In areas it looks like the Highway men just tipped a wheel barrow of tarmac in some of the holes without compacting and they repaired a strip of road and left a hole untreated right next to it and when questioned they told me that as their colleague hadn't chalked the hole it doesn't get repaired. Oh Dear you couldn't write it! Its called initiative!!!!!

Eddie H
2023-02-20 07:03:51

I am just waiting for the police to pull me over for a breath test, because I have to constantly weave between the pot holes, craters is a better description.

2023-02-20 08:24:10

A very long time ago there was a proposal that in return for reductions in tax residents would look after, tidy, cut and trim greenary that immediately bordered their homes (a practice apparently successfully employed elsewhere ). This cut taxes and bought communities together. It also released the Council labour force to tackle other more specialised heavy jobs like roofing and pot holes. Not an entire answer but notable that Rod Stewart might have a point in the idea of taking action when he repaired his road (although not the specific proposal here) also in Harlow most of the care of the Museum gardens was (and may still be) done by a team of volunteers.

Terry Rackley
2023-02-20 08:27:12

Perhap we should get Rod Stewart to survey some of these treacherous potholes in Harlow - First Avenue - Leading into Momples Road is dangerous...and getting worse ..Serious Injury waiting to happen methinks..!!!!

2023-02-20 08:40:08

People appear to have given up reporting pothols. That does not help. They can be reported directly to E C C but I prefer "FIX MY STREET" because that is quicker and easy, too.

2023-02-20 09:13:02

Pauline, I reported a damaged speed ramp 2 years and 2 days ago today, has it been fixed? i will let you guess, i also use fix my street as your reports remain for you to see but i have a funny feeling that Harlow and Essex cc delete them after a certain time if not fixed so may start reporting my list again.

2023-02-20 09:13:33

PLEASE stop play tit for tat party politics over pot holes. The exist and are getting larger and deeper all across out town. There will be serious accidents as drivers now have to slalom down most roads. Heavy lorries probably caused a lot of the initial damage along with freeze/thaw conditions and lorries are certainly making it worse.

2023-02-20 10:03:14

Neither main political party seem able to solve the problem - the heart of which lies with E C C Councillors who appear to just sit back and hope it will blow over. We have four County Councillors in Harlow and all four are also H D C Councillors. Don't they care about the bad reputation gaining ground?

Nicholas Taylor
2023-02-20 10:27:10

There is a deathly silence from our County Councillors, who should be seriously embarrassed by the state of the towns roads. One of these is up for re-election in May, Cllr Souter in Sumners and Kingsmoor. Will the electorate come out in such numbers to voice their opinion and remove him from the Council?

fed up
2023-02-20 10:55:23

leave the pot holes alone .it is the only thing that slows traffic down

2023-02-20 11:07:38

Good point Nicholas - please note if you live in that area - don't vote for a non worker! I guess the other three might be up for reelection next year. So they also need to "show their colours" now.

Toby Le Rone
2023-02-20 12:27:53

Does 9 people count as a protest ? Could any of the Pothole 9 direct me to a Labour town with no pothole pls ? & do these people have nothing better to do ? But standing around with signs about potholes…

2023-02-20 19:18:55

That is a bit unfair Toby - you have missed the whole point! Please read the remarks of Nicholas Taylor earlier today.

Michael Hardware
2023-02-20 22:25:29

Not sure what you mean Tony; perhaps Labour's lack of actually achieving anything in the decade you were in power has made you blind to progress, or have you simply not been paying attention! Regeneration of the town centre started last November when Strawberry Star started the demolition on part of their site, having gained planning consent for their development, Essex County Council has last month started enabling works in the Burnt Mill to Town Centre Sustainable Transport Corridor, and the same council has last week started work on the new link road to Templefields, one of the Towns Fund projects.

Michael Hardware
2023-02-20 22:36:37

As for potholes, all four county councillors and the leader have been working hard to identify and report the potholes around the town. Some have already breen repaired, or made safe, and I have a list of road closures happening in the coming months for more detailed repairs. The ECC Cabinbet Member has come to Harlow several times recently, Cllr Souter took Essex Highways on a tour of his division pointing out the problems only last week, and I have driven many estates with Cllr Souter to find and report pot holes through the Member Pothole Scheme. It is a shame Labour try to make political mileage out of this as it is not a Harlow thing, or an Essex thing, the whole country has the same problem whether under Labour of the Conseravtrives. The record summer temperatures, followed by -12 temperatures before Christmas and then a deluge of rain in the new year all impacted on the road surfaces. ECC has allocated a further £9 million for road mainteance which includes an extension of the Member Pothole Scheme, so hopefully the issues can begin to be addressed this spring.

Kim Oconnor
2023-02-21 11:00:48

Michael Hardware, your regeneration plan, is going to be the biggest destruction to Harlow, we have ever seen. And now it starts, the ripping up of our green belt. Building 7 unaffordable housing estates, around our wetlands. 4 lane road straight through the river stort. Ripping up our trees in abundance. Wildlife habitat s destroyed. Destroying a whole Ecco systems. Bringing in thousands more people, bringing in thousands more cars. With very little being built for people waiting on housing list. This destruction is not for the people of Harlow, because most of us could not afford to buy them. You talk the talk on wellbeing, but all you councils are doing is taking the very thing away, that makes us better. THIS TOWN WILL BE A CONCRETE MESS OF UNAFFORDABLE HOUSING. WITH DEVERSTATING RESULTS ON THE ENVIRONMENT. As for pot holes, seeing is believing. I wouldn't hold my breath. As for the two party's passing the buck back and forth, both party's have let the side down badly for Harlow. We are not against progress, but the environment and the people of this town must come first. Which it isn't I may add.

2023-02-21 14:57:06

Kim O’Connor, you are mixing apples and oranges. The Regeneration programme relates to much needed improvement to our Town centre and housing estates that had been neglected for many years by the previous Labour administration. The acquisition of the Harvey Centre and the new Bus Terminus are just the starting points of this major programme for which separate funding has been secured. What you are talking about seems to HGGT which is an entirely separate venture, which was signed to in 2017 by the then Labour Council.

James Griggs
2023-02-21 16:58:50

Cllr Hardware, I’m delighted to hear you have a list of planned road closures and repairs. I look forward to you publishing it forthwith so we can all see the extent of the repairs to which we can look forward.

2023-02-21 17:37:42

Michael Hardware "hopefully" beginning repairs this Spring is simply NOT GOOD ENOUGH. Potholes are the big issue in the Town of Harlow right now. Expounding the problem as a national issue is meaningless to local residents. The potholes must be fixed Now. Perhaps it's too risky for you to make firm comments like the unfulfilled promise to "immediately repair" potholes on First Avenue which are still a severe hazard. Come on! let's see something delivered!

Nicholas Taylor
2023-02-21 18:55:40

Michael, surely the role of a Councillor is not, amongst other things to identify where pot holes are or indeed using a Members Pothole scheme or then get involved in setting priorities. There are many highly paid council staff to do that and indeed residents can report the need for repairs.

2023-02-21 22:15:06

Well said Nicholas. I understand that in one recent year Essex County Council highly salaried staff increased by 16%. Be interesting to see the latest figures - as a percentage. AND, interesting to see some Harlow County Councillors have woken but are still sleepy! We don't need them to report incidents (we use fix my street) but we want County Councillors to encourage staff to act much faster when incidents are reported. It is not just potholes, what about the demolished road signs left month after month, even over a year in at least one case. Neither do we require party politics involvement, just better service.

2023-02-23 09:39:48

I am not interested in who has said what and/or who's fault it is or has been, I am only interested in what will happen going forward, so tonight I will be attending the full council meeting to ask 2 questions. 1).What plans has the council agreed with the Essex County Council for repairs to the pot holes in Harlow and are they planning to publish those plans via Your Harlow or the next quarterly leaflet distribution? 2). Please explain what the additional cost per household would be, via Council Tax, if a special levy were to be used to raise the funds for pot hole repair. And could Harlow Council carry out those works if ECC will not? Why not come along at 19:30 to hear the council's answers.

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