Ain't no party like a pothole party! - Woman's bid to shame county council over oldest pothole in town

Rosie the dog checks out the birthday cake in the 'oldest pothole in town'.

Rosie the dog checks out the birthday cake in the 'oldest pothole in town'. - Credit: Laura Bill

An impromptu birthday party has been held for "the oldest pothole in town" in a bid to shame county council bosses into taking action.

The unwelcome hole, one of many scattered around The Ridgeway in St Albans, has been in a state of disrepair for the best part of a year, and is growing bigger all the time.

Frustrated with the damage it has already caused to two of her car tyres, nearby resident Mary McIntyre decided to shame Herts county council into fixing the unsightly hole at long last. 

Mary said: "It's growing bigger every day. It has already chewed up two of my tyres. And its brothers and sisters in The Ridgeway are getting bigger too! I don't know if my car can survive another bump.

"My poor little dog Rosie is terrified she will disappear into this black hole and never go for walkies again!"

A birthday cake in the 'oldest pothole in town'.

A birthday cake in the 'oldest pothole in town'. - Credit: Laura Bill


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After waiting months for the pothole to be repaired, Mary decided enough was enough and she'd actually hold a party to celebrate the fact it had been there for so long.

"I think it could be the oldest pothole in town," she said, "so why not mark this occasion somehow? The county council said the potholes in The Ridgeway were going to be repaired by 2021, but they've now put back the work to 2025, which is unbelievable."

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So this week she organised a tongue-in-cheek birthday party, complete with cake and candles, to recognise its duration and the lack of action by the county council.

Passers-by stopped to find out what was happening, and shared their dismay at the state of the road and lack of repairs.

One woman, who asked to remain anonymous, said: "There are loads of potholes in this area, and nothing seems to be done to sort them out. Well done to you for highlighting the issue!"

A spokesperson for Hertfordshire County Council said: “We’re planning to resurface The Ridgeway between Slimmonds Drive and Barnfield Road next year. We’ll monitor the rest of the road to see if it also needs to be included in that resurfacing.

"We encourage road users to report potholes, or any other defect, to us online at www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/highwayfaults This ensures that they are in our system and, even if we can’t repair them immediately, we can use the information to help us plan our maintenance programmes.”

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