Potholes to be patched up

Ian Rodger from East Wemyss beside one of the large potholes in Victoria Avenue (picture by George McLuskie)
Ian Rodger from East Wemyss beside one of the large potholes in Victoria Avenue (picture by George McLuskie)

Severe potholes in two private East Wemyss streets are due to be fixed, for road safety reasons, by Fife Council.

Householders in the Randolph Street and Victoria Avenue areas have been seeking action over the condition of the streets.

Stretches of the roads – particularly their entrances – are badly damaged by crumbling gravel and deep holes, raising worries about safety for motorists and pedestrians.

These sections, known as the ‘bell mouths’, are due to be fixed, weather permitting, at Randolph Street and nearby St Mary’s Terrace between December 10-21.

However, the routes are not adopted by Fife Council – their upkeep is the responsibility of the residents, in line with a ruling which existed when they bought their homes.

And the long-term condition of the streets is likely to remain a matter for the householders.

Levenmouth local area services boss Dave Paterson said the costs of the work, which could be around £6000-£8000, would be met from local area and transportation budgets.

He advised there may be other costs associated with matters such as drainage or re-setting of kerbs, while the weather at this time of the year was another influential factor.

Drivers on the A955 were understandably slowing right down when turning into St Mary’s Terrace and Randolph Street, because of the severe damage, said Mr Paterson, but this was causing safety issues for other traffic on the main road, which underlined the need for repairs.

However, Mr Paterson ruled out the Council’s adoption of the roads in their current state and said it was for the residents to reach a consensus on the way ahead.

“I still think there’s a job to de done with the residents in trying to look for a long-term solution and we would like to engage with them,” he added.

A petition with nearly 270 signatures was submitted to the Council in the summer, asking it to “urgently prioritise” the adoption of the affected streets, which had declined since British Coal withdrew operational support .

A community council meeting in June was attended by Mr Paterson and environmental and transportation spokesman Councillor Pat Callaghan, who had advised on possible remedial action.

Resident Ian Rodger, however, said fears of a serious accident had continued to grow.

Mr Rodger and petition organiser Ian Cunningham, of Victoria Avenue, were part of an unofficial residents’ group which was dealing with the matter.

Other householders said some residents were aware of their responsibility and had tried to fix sections of the street themselves, but not all were owner-occupiers, while a number were elderly or retired and possibly not able to afford the price of maintenance.