Residents accept council offer

Angry residents at Alma Hill who have a waged a ten-year-campaign for repairs to the bridleway have accepted a council offer to undertake basic work.

The residents also urged Nottinghamshire County Council to tackle drainage problems after they spent last year writing letters and compiling petitions in a bid to get the bridleway re-surfaced.

Local resident Moya Winwood says the poor road conditions meant the ambulance service had severe difficulties reaching her husband after he had a heart attack.

She said: "We have been waiting ten years for the county council to acknowledge their responsibility to repair the footpath.

"It's in a dreadful state and we are fed up with the excuses they have previously made."

Kimberley councillor Richard Robinson said: "At last we've got some sort of written commitment from the county council that they will do something.

"Now they've got to deliver, repair the potholes and work with the borough council to address the draining problems that are evident."

Resident Bob Walker said: "So many people use this footpath, it's not safe for walkers, neither is it safe for emergency vehicles."

Broxtowe MP Nick Palmer wrote to the council to back the repair bid. "As Member of Parliament it is only on extremely rare occasions I seek to intervene, on what is primarily and quite properly a matter for local councillors to decide upon.

"However having now been made aware of the severity of the situation I would respectfully urge you to expedite matters in order that the said Bridleway is properly resurfaced and we can achieve some closure on this issue."

The council agreed to make "basic repairs" to the potholes in November last year.

Cllr Robinson says residents will monitor how much of an improvement this makes - but they also seek an assurance that the council will be responsible for any ongoing maintenance work.

A spokesman for Nottinghamshire County Council said they could not cover the full cost of the resurfacing because it would set a precedent for all the other shared publicand private routes across the county, which could lead to expenditure potentially running into hundreds of thousands of pounds.

He said: "If we cannot reach an agreement on sharing the repair costs with residents we may have to do some basic repairs to potholes to protect the public.

"I am unable to justify fully funding the improvement of a path where surface damage has been caused almost entirely by vehicles accessing private property."