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Darlington ‘could risk economic growth’ as research reveals drop in road maintenance and repairs spending

New research has revealed that the spend on road maintenance and repairs across Darlington has decreased year-on-year since 2015, which could lead to the town being ‘annexed’ from economic gains.

The research, conducted by Promain UK which supplies road coatings and marker paints, showed that spending by Darlington Borough Council dropped steadily over its last three financial years.

Financial year Amount spent on road maintenance and repairs:

2015/16 £339,735
2016/17 £273,133
2017/18 £235,467

Since 2015, the figures revealed a 30.69% decrease.

Promain used Freedom of Information requests to every local authority in England to ascertain the overall spend on road maintenance and repairs throughout the country.

Promain is the UK’s largest supplier of industrial and commercial paints and coatings, which includes the supply of Highways Agency approved products, road line marking paints and car park repair and maintenance coatings.

Mark French, Director of Promain UK, warns that it is short-sighted for local authorities to reduce road maintenance and repairs, as ineffective roads deteriorate with potholes and faded lines creating poor conditions for investment in communities.

He said: “Roads and car parks, in particular, withstand a lot of use day-in, day-out and play a huge role in people’s everyday lives, so it is vital that preventative products are used and measures are in place to reduce the risk of serious damage to infrastructure. The manufacturers of these coatings and paints are continually innovating to deliver products that support transport infrastructure, and we have many years’ experience working with supply chain partners within local authorities to provide them with the products that benefit communities.”

“There are massive economic benefits to be had with effective road infrastructure in place. For areas to thrive, road connectivity is key to not only support people living and working within the local authority, but to attract new businesses, especially distribution-based operators, which rely heavily on transport infrastructure.”

Mr French added: “It is common knowledge that councils are facing severe spending cuts to their budgets, and these pressures may result in funding going on other services, but road maintenance and repairs should be seen as a priority that can lead to economic gains. Poor road infrastructure could potentially annexe towns and cities from crucial inward investment and developments to these areas, as a result.”

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