Campervan drivers living in or visiting the coastal city of Brighton will have to drive more carefully in future if planned cuts in the highway budget go ahead.
As part of Brighton Council’s £17 million budget savings plan the Highways and Road Maintenance Department will be expected to find almost three quarters of a million pounds in savings. It is thought that councillors will opt for not replacing aged and faded street and road signs in a bid to balance their budget. Repairs to lampposts, bollards and pavement furniture are also expected to be ignored unless they pose a direct threat to the health and safety of the public.
The council is run by the Green Party and Ian Davey, the cabinet member responsible for transport issues defended the Councils record vehemently, saying “The Green budget proposals take Brighton and Hove streets very seriously, doubling the previous administration’s plan by allocating £3.5 million to maintenance and capital investment, which means a programme of replacing street lights with lighting that is both better and more environmentally sound, instead of just mend and make do, and a programme of completely resurfacing some of the worst roads and pavements instead of just patching over potholes piecemeal.”
However, members of motoring groups were not convinced. Motorhome owner Steve Savage said: “I do not really want to see the libraries cut or public toilets shut but money has to come from somewhere. If you cut libraries people will get cross but if you cut roads maintenance people can get hurt. It’s a health and safety issue. Potholes in the road may not seem a big issue up in Town Hall but if I have to claim on my campervan insurance because my suspension has been damaged it will cost me hundreds of pounds extra year after year.” The budget has yet to be finalised and councillors will get a vote on the matter in coming months.