Extra cash promised to keep St Helens moving

Traffic jams at the junction of Robin Park Road and Montrose Avenue, Worsley Hall
Traffic jams at the junction of Robin Park Road and Montrose Avenue, Worsley Hall

TOWN Hall chiefs are set to spend nearly £10m in the next 12 months to help keep the people of St Helens on the move.

Just short of £500,000 has been allocated to the repairing of potholes exacerbated during the severe winter and £1m has been earmarked for minor footway and carriageway repairs.

More than £1.5m will be spent on street lighting maintenance - which includes £1m-plus for electricity - but a further £1m will boost energy efficient lighting schemes, which attracts European grant funding.

Elsewhere, £1.6m will be spent on resurfacing major roads, £450,000 on resurfacing minor roads and the same total on footway reconstructions.

Nearly £500,000 will be spent on repairing and maintaining the A570 and East Lancs, £320,000 on the strengthening of bridges, £280,000 on gritting, £195,000 on maintaining roadside verges, trees and hedges and £183,000 on cleaning out every road gully at least once this year.

Coun Alison Bacon, St Helens Council’s cabinet member for environmental protection, said: “The government’s comprehensive spending review has forced us to make cuts across our budgets. But this proposed engineering programme of works will still bring significant improvements for the local infrastructure – benefiting pedestrians and road users alike.”

Other work set to be undertaken includes new provision for pedestrians and cyclists as part of the Integrated Transport Programme – a £666,000 package that also takes in accident prevention schemes, traffic management and urban traffic control.

As well as covering the vital day-to-day maintenance, the new budget will also take in flagship programmes like the footbridge to the new Saints stadium.

There will also be money for several major car park improvements and better access for pedestrians at several local centres.