A pothole can be seen at this roundabout. | J.M.P.


What with a cost-of-living crisis, multiple strikes and a collapsing NHS you would think that things couldn’t get much worse in the United Kingdom nowadays could you? Well, that was until last Sunday night when I was forced to sit through almost two hours of ‘Luvvies’ congratulating themselves and each other for just doing their very well paid jobs via the annual BAFTA Awards Ceremony on the television. However, I have to tell you dear reader that there is an even bigger scandal abroad in this country - and that is…ahem, the state of our roads at the moment. From motorways and dual carriageways, to urban and country roads, they all have one thing in common right across the nation - this being, potholes. When I say potholes I am not talking about the odd crease in the road, but holes of every shape and size just sit there waiting to be repaired. Alas, it seems that unless the pothole was likely to swallow a Ford Fiesta whole, nothing much appears to be done about it.

Honestly, I know that I am a little prone to exaggeration on occasions to underpin my case, but I can assure you that what I speak of is entirely true. For instance, in certain parts of the town where we live, potholes are so numerous it’s a bit like going on a slalom ski-run as you follow other motorists zig-zagging across local roads at about 15mph. In fact my neighbour (not that really annoying one with the flash car and the really white teeth) happened upon a pothole just yesterday that split and punctured his front left-side tyre. He told me that the bloke at the garage who replaced the tyre, said that he had never been so busy in his working life. I know that I shouldn’t just pick on my local council here in Gloucestershire, as the situation seems as bad almost everywhere else across the country. Nevertheless, with councils seeking an increase in ‘council tax’ to balance their books, perhaps some of them might just consider that fixing their roads to be of a higher priority, than…say, trans-gender public toilet related issues. Anyway, as a person who can and does - become fixated about certain issues, I cannot in all honesty just blame my local town hall.

When we go and visit my mother-in-law down in Devon the country roads in that part of the world are particularly badly potholed. Indeed, as I potter-along driving quietly whilst minding my own business, I not only have to look out for the usual ‘carrot-crunching’ maniacs swerving about on narrow country lanes, but also keep my eyes focussed on the road surface in front of me to avoid the sudden appearance of multiple potholes. Picture the scene! There I am confronted by a series of unexpected depressions on my side of the road, but if I should so much as twitch the steering wheel to avoid them, I would be flattened by some erstwhile farmer Giles figure driving his monstrous tractor bouncing along on the other side of the road. So then councils everywhere - do try and fix the roads will you; you know it makes sense and us motorists who also pay a thing called ‘Road Tax’ will love you forever.