Yellow peril branded 'not acceptable'

THICK and wobbly bright yellow lines painted along roads in a riverside town have been branded "not acceptable" by a leading borough councillor.Colchester Borough Council cabinet member Richard Gower admitted he would be angry if double yellow markers like those recently put down in Wivenhoe's conservation area appeared outside his own home.

THICK and wobbly bright yellow lines painted along roads in a riverside town have been branded "not acceptable" by a leading borough councillor.

Colchester Borough Council cabinet member Richard Gower admitted he would be angry if double yellow markers like those recently put down in Wivenhoe's conservation area appeared outside his own home.

Borough council officers have defended the use of the thick lines which they said were replacing what had been there before.

However, a councillor has revealed he had been assured that thinner, paler lines would be go down after complaints after a previous painting of Wivenhoe's streets.


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Similar, but subtler lines have been painted in other Colchester borough conservation areas to avoid ruining the appearance of historic streets.

Mr Gower, Colchester's portfolio holder for planning and transport, said: "I have seen the photos of Wivenhoe in the press and this is just not acceptable.

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"No one wants to spoil the environment for the people of Colchester. The lines do have to be there but you can see from the pictures there is bad workmanship.

"I do not know what the request to the contractors was, but if they have got it wrong they will have to put it right."

Beverley Gould, a council street services manager, said an inspection had already been carried out and the new lines were the same as the old ones.

She said: "We have gone back to what was there already. They look a bit shiny and new but they are as the older lines were, which are 100mm wide.

"We just follow the request and as we did not receive any complaints we just renewed what was there. If we were to change the lines now it would mean burning off the road surface at a huge cost to the council."

Later she admitted the new lines were not up to expected council standards.

She said: "We have picked up that there are areas where the lines are missing or where they do not follow the old ones so we will be following that up with the contractors."

Colchester borough councillor Bob Newman, who lives in West Street, Wivenhoe, said he had complained about their size the last time they were painted some years before.

Officers then promised that a more suitable line width and colour would be used when repainting was next needed.

Mr Newman said he was not entirely surprised the pledge had gone unrecorded, as the transport department had been reshuffled.

He said: "This is extremely annoying and it looks so appalling. The council does not tell anyone what it is about to do, so the first we know about it is when it has happened. It is a lot harder to get something changed once it has been done.

"Both what they have done and the quality is shoddy. To be frank if you employed someone to do this work as an individual, you would not pay them.

"The lines have not even lasted two to three weeks. In some places there are four lines where they have not followed what was there already. And we are paying council tax for this.

"This is nothing short of visual vandalism."

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