Pensioners who were told an uneven pavement outside their home could not be resurfaced are furious after hearing £500,000 is to be spent on path repairs to help tackle obesity.
The residents of Hopkins Court sheltered housing in Eastwood asked Nottinghamshire County Council if a pavement outside the complex - lived in by both the elderly and the infirm – could be resurfaced.
But the answer was no due to cash constraints.
They have since learned the council is spending £500,000 on pavement improvements to encourage overweight people to get out and walk more, and have branded the move ‘ludicrous’.
One of the residents, Ken Woodhead, who is chairman of Eastwood Tenants and Residents Association, said: “They can’t improve the pavements for the elderly and disabled, yet they can spend £500,000 for the obese?
“It’s ludicrous. It makes me feel very, very angry. They should put safety first. It’s ridiculous.”
Mr Woodhead said the pavement outside the Victoria Street complex was ‘dangerous’ and needed resurfacing to save residents from tripping.
“They could easily fall and break a hip, then it would cost the NHS,” he said, adding that repairing the pavement would save money in the long run.
“The pavement has been bad for a long time and with the bad winter it’s just got worse.
“People are having to walk on the road to get round it,” added Mr Woodhead.
Nottinghamshire County Council is to improve pavements in towns with high concentrations of obese people, in a bid to encourage them to get more exercise, including in Eastwood and Brinsley.
Dave Walker, district highways manager at Nottinghamshire County Council, said: “We are continuing to monitor the surface condition during our regular highways inspections. If the condition deteriorates significantly we will re-consider undertaking repairs or improvements.“
“Improving pavements is one of a number of measures to promote healthier lifestyles, introduced as part of new responsibilities for public health.”