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Station Hill in Bury St Edmunds may be resurfaced in next two financial years – but permanent pothole repairs to take place





A potholed town road described as like a ‘patchwork quilt’ is under consideration for resurfacing – but it is unclear when the work might take place.

There have been numerous calls for Station Hill, in Bury St Edmunds, to be completely resurfaced due to the poor road surface , with some potholes ‘bigger than a dinner plate’.

A Suffolk Highways spokeswoman confirmed permanent pothole repairs would be taking place there within the next two weeks.

Station Hill pictured on Friday, March 8. Picture: Mariam Ghaemi
Station Hill pictured on Friday, March 8. Picture: Mariam Ghaemi
Another view of Station Hill on March 8. Picture: Mariam Ghaemi
Another view of Station Hill on March 8. Picture: Mariam Ghaemi

In a social media post, Suffolk Highways said Station Hill would be closed from 7pm today to 5am tomorrow for repairs.

In terms of resurfacing, SuffolkNews can now reveal, following a Freedom of Information (FOI) request to Suffolk County Council (SCC), that Station Hill is not currently commissioned for planned resurfacing, however it is being considered for inclusion within a future resurfacing programme.

This is hoped to be within the 2024/25 or 2025/26 financial years, subject to other countywide priorities and funding availability, the response said. A budget estimate for full resurfacing of Station Hill has been given as between £60,000 and £100,000.

Cllr Diane Hind, Mayor of Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Mark Westley
Cllr Diane Hind, Mayor of Bury St Edmunds. Picture: Mark Westley

Diane Hind, mayor of Bury St Edmunds, who previously described Station Hill as a ‘patchwork quilt’ of defects and repairs, said of the timescales for resurfacing: “I think it’s a poor show, especially as it’s a gateway into the town, especially if you come in on the train.

“I’m pleased to think it’s at least got as far as they will now consider putting it on a resurfacing programme.

“I would much sooner they said they would try to get it on 24/25 because failing that 25/26 is kind of like kicking the can down the road. I find that pretty disappointing really.”

Cllr Hind, who represents the Tollgate ward on West Suffolk Council and the town council, said people were becoming increasingly frustrated over the state of the road, adding it was raised with her by residents only last week.

She said if Station Hill was resurfaced now, highways would probably save money in its ‘pothole-filling pot’.

Cllr Hind said it felt like Bury was the ‘poor relation’ in Suffolk in terms of where the highways money was spent.

“I think they are too interested in Ipswich and the coastal towns,” she said. “I just don’t think we get a fair crack of the whip.”

Martyn Taylor, chairman of the Bury Society.
Martyn Taylor, chairman of the Bury Society.

Martyn Taylor, Bury Society chairman, said it was ‘disappointing’ Station Hill was not currently included for planned resurfacing, adding: “It can only deteriorate further and then more work would obviously have to be done.

“At this moment in time 50 per cent of Station Hill is in a very poor condition, but come a year/two years’ time a lot more will have deteriorated.”

The FOI response also revealed there were 83 reports of potholes for Station Hill in the 2023/24 financial year – more than for any of the years dating back to 2018/19. The number may include multiple reports for the same pothole.

And for 2023/24, so far 25 repairs had been carried out for potholes meeting the intervention criteria.

A collection of photos of Station Hill on March 8. Pictures: Mariam Ghaemi
A collection of photos of Station Hill on March 8. Pictures: Mariam Ghaemi

People’s frustration with the state of the road comes across in comments on the Suffolk Highways online reporting tool.

One reads: “Two large and very deep potholes tight next to a repair. Ridiculous, how they didn't do this as well when they were here two weeks, ago. Thank you, £160 for a new tyre.”

Another reads: “The entire Station Hill requires resurfacing. Hole after hole after hole, in both directions. The ones that've been patched up started to crambling again. Do something.”

And another: “Multiple pot holes on Station Hill. Bigger than a dinner table and as deep as a tennis ball. I did report this on January 9.”

SuffolkNews visited Station Hill on Friday to take pictures of the road surface.

Cllr Robert Everitt pictured in Station Hill in January this year. Picture: Mecha Morton
Cllr Robert Everitt pictured in Station Hill in January this year. Picture: Mecha Morton

Suffolk county Cllr Robert Everitt, who represents Tower division, said he would raise the issue of the road at the next Conservative group meeting.

“I can bring up Station Hill up at that meeting and when it’s going to be done. I would hope it would be done in 2024/25 at least,” he said.

He said the highways team was ‘cracking on’ with tackling the roads, but there were larger issues around funding so it had to work out which areas to prioritise.

A Suffolk Highways spokeswoman said: “The condition of Station Hill has been assessed and is being considered for future resurfacing due to the number of defects identified and customer reports received.

“Timescales for the work have not yet been confirmed at this stage.”