Potholes blamed for home damage

Residents on Westfield Avenue in Blackpool
Residents on Westfield Avenue in Blackpool
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RESIDENTS claim the disgraceful state of a busy Blackpool road is causing houses to crumble.

Anxious homeowners fear shoddy road maintenance is threatening the stability of their homes.

Giant potholes and heavy lorries hurtling down Westfield Avenue are causing their houses to shake.

And after two years of continuous complaints, cracks have now appeared in the ceilings and walls of properties on the Layton road.

But town hall bosses have strongly denied the potholes could cause structural damage to property.

Pat and Beryl Masters, moved into their home last September but huge cracks have now appeared in their bedroom wall.

Pat said: “I am woken up in the night because of tremors and thought it must be having an impact on the property.

“A few days ago Beryl stripped the wallpaper in the bedroom and there was a crack from the ceiling to the floor.

“I’ll need a full structural report to find out how close to falling down the house is.

“If I could afford a seismologist to investigate the movement and prove it is down to the state of the road I’d take Blackpool Council to court.”

Concerned residents Peter and Patricia Axon described the state of the road as “disgraceful”.

Peter, 70, said: “There has been a problem with heavy wagons coming down the road onto Mowbray Drive for some time now but potholes on the road have made it worse.

“Now every time a lorry drives down the whole house shudders, it is tremendous, it feels like an earthquake.

“We noticed dust was gathering in corners of the house and then realised the building was actually cracking.”

Pat, 67, said she was also worried about people walking on the pavement, especially school children who use the road as a walk through to Collegiate High School as cars swerve to avoid the holes.

Last year, Blackpool Council was named as one of the poorest authorities in the country for dealing with potholes.

In March it launched Project 30 to repair and replace over 40 miles of carriageway – the equivalent distance from Blackpool Tower to Morecambe.

But John Backhouse, who has lived on Westfield Avenue for 25 years, says it may be too little to late.

He said: “Mowbray Drive has been resurfaced and the section at the Blackpool Old Road end has been done by Lancashire Council.

“I have also noticed cracks in the ceiling and walls of my living room, this is the council’s fault and why should we pay?”

But a Blackpool Council spokesman added: “We do not believe any damage to roads is enough to cause damage to nearby properties no matter how much traffic passes nearby but we do carry out regular checks on road surfaces and deal with any issues of safety.”