Builder's Tarmac gift leaves Goldenhill car park with £30k repair bill
A CONTRACTOR who resurfaced a car park with leftover Tarmac as a favour for residents has left a council with a £30,000 repair bill.
Stoke-on-Trent City Council is having to pick up the bill to solve drainage problems at the 15-space car park in Goldenhill.
Residents had thought they were on to a good thing when the un-named contractor re-surfaced the Elgood Lane car park for free last August.
But the work has created flooding problems – and the council cannot order the contractor to do the work again.
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Now Sandyford and Goldenhill Residents' Association (SAGE) has called on the council to carry out the repairs.
Association chairman Joe Smith, aged 81, of High Street, Goldenhill, said: "We are disappointed that the contractor is not willing to return and finish the job – and the council cannot force them to carry it out.
"No-one asked for this Tarmac to be put on to the car park in the first place.
"But there is no use pressurising them to return any longer as they have made their position very clear.
"Unfortunately £30,000 is too much to pay in these difficult financial times."
Resident Tom Simpson, aged 55, of Ridge Road, Goldenhill said: "At one time the car park had really bad potholes and we had already had these filled in when the contractors left the Tarmac there.
"If they had done it properly maybe it would have been a lot more acceptable but it is just splat in the middle – it isn't even square or level, it looks a mess.
"Obviously you can't see the problem with the snow as it is but underneath it really needs sorting.
"They thought they were doing some good by putting it there and I suppose by using Tarmac instead of gravel it was better quality.
"But they didn't ask anyone beforehand and they never informed the council or any of the residents."
Alternative plans are now being considered to try to reduce the £30,000 bill.
One plan includes resurfacing a smaller section of the car park and then transforming the remainder of the site into an open area for families.
Council officials were challenged over the state of the car park at the latest SAGE meeting.
Assistant director of city services Malcolm Dawson said: "I understand a national contractor was resurfacing Goldenhill High Street and had a lot of Tarmac left over.
"They thought that by spreading the Tarmac on the car park they would be doing us a favour so they rolled it out and left it. The issue is that the sub-structure now needs looking at like drainage and it has caused all sorts of issues."
He added: "It is an issue that we are working on. We will try to design something smaller and tidy the rest of it up but we do not have £30,000 to spend on it."