Is Portsmouth's pothole problem being ignored? Residents have their say

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While the condition of Portsmouth’s roads has been called into question by the Department for Transport, the city’s residents claim that the council has ignored the issues away from the main roads for quite some time.

Figures released by the department show that roughly 38 miles of Portsmouth's council-run roads suffered ‘considerable deterioration’ in 2018/19, including six per cent of A roads and motorways and eight per cent of B and C roads.

Roads that showed deterioration were categorised as ‘poor’, and may need maintenance within the next 12 months.

READ MORE: Portsmouth roads in need of repair as 38 miles of city streets face deterioration 

For comparison, three per cent of Southampton’s B and C roads and four per cent of Hampshire's were considered to be in a similarly poor state.

Cllr Lynne Stagg’s contention that residents were largely happy with the state of the city’s roads was not borne out when we sought some local views.

Alison Stocker, 60 from Southsea, said: ‘Along the seafront in Southsea it’s absolutely fine, there are no problems whatsoever.

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‘But when you go down some of the back roads I think you start to realise just how bad the problem is. It’s a shame that these other places are nowhere near as well looked after.

‘The roads are very worn out, it’s not just potholes but some parts of the road actually breaking up too.

‘I think part of that is having too many cars on the road – we need to get more people cycling.’

Steven Wong, 32 from Southsea, added: ‘It’s not necessarily something I’ve thought about because I don’t drive, but when there is a problem in the road you always notice it, and in some cases that problem sticks around.

‘I guess the council is focusing on the main roads instead, but that shouldn’t come as a cost to everywhere else.’

Paul McCarthy from Paulsgrove added: ‘I agree that a lot of the roads in Portsmouth are in a poor condition.

‘It’s not just the potholes in our estate but the speed bumps down Elkstone Road – there’s a lot of work that needs to be done.’

Another road user from Stamshaw, who wished to remain anonymous, said: ‘The council focuses too much on certain roads.

‘My road in particular has been dug up at least five times – I just think it’s a waste of money.

‘The potholes are terrible too, it sometimes feels like we pay our council tax for nothing.’