A hole lot 
of trouble

Anne Hanvey and Steve Clarke by the sink hole on Buttermere Avenue, Fleetwood.
Anne Hanvey and Steve Clarke by the sink hole on Buttermere Avenue, Fleetwood.

Residents in Fleetwood were shocked when a deep, gaping sink hole appeared in the middle of their road –less than two hours after it was repaired.

Engineers from Lancashire County Council came to fix the sunken road surface on Buttermere Avenue, applying a layer of asphalt over the top.

But just hours later, a sink hole, around 4ft deep and 3ft across, suddenly opened in the middle of the road.

Residents say someone could have been killed if it had happened when it was dark.

This week the hole, thought to have been caused by a collapsed sewer, has been filled in with stones to make it safe, but has not yet been fixed.

Resident Steve Clark said: “We have real issues with the surface of this road, but this is the worst it has been yet.

“We could have had a fatal accident here.”

Residents on Buttermere Avenue, which links Larkholme and the West View estate, have been unhappy about the state of the road for some years.

In October they sent a 146-name petition to road authority, Lancashire County Council, raising concerns over the poor surface.

However, the latest repair work, carried out last Wednesday morning, seems to have made things even worse.

After the hole appeared, county engineers hastily returned and fenced it off to make it safe.

Mr Clarke, who was involved in last year’s petition, added: “The state of this road, and others in Larkholme, are unacceptable and even when repairs are done, the standard is just not good enough.

“When the 84 bus comes down it, it rattles people’s homes because the road surface is so poor.

“People just want a decent road surface, it shouldn’t be too much to ask.”

Sim Lane-Dixon, Lancashire County Council highways manager for Wyre, said: “We responded to a report of a depression in the surface in Buttermere Avenue on Wednesday morning by making a temporary repair.

“There was no evidence at that time of a more serious problem, however we received the report of the road collapse on Wednesday afternoon and put barriers up for safety.

“We suspected a sewer collapse and United Utilities found the sewer was partly blocked but would need further investigation.

“We have now temporarily filled the hole until highways staff are able to investigate.”