VILLAGERS are "fed up" after being told bin lorries can no longer use a pothole-riddled road leading to their homes.

A long-running dispute over who is responsible for the disintegrating road in Croft-on-Tees, near Darlington, has reached boiling point with Richmondshire District Council telling home owners to foot the repair bill themselves.

But those living next to the road, which leads from the corner of South Parade and Monk End Gardens, are not prepared to fund the £4,000 needed to resurface it every four years.

During a recent Croft-on-Tees Parish Council meeting, home owners appealed for help to find out just who owns it.

The Northern Echo: Potholes along this stretch of South Parade, in Croft-on-Tees, near Darlington, have caused outrage among residents who have been told Richmondshire District Council bin lorries and waste collection vehicles would no longer use the road.
Potholes along this stretch of South Parade, in Croft-on-Tees, near Darlington

One resident said: “We need guidance over what to do next because after living in Croft for 20 years and putting money towards the repairs every four or five years, we feel like we’re here again.

“We can’t use tarmac on the road because any run-off would flood into people’s gardens and the cost of putting in a proper drainage system is too much.

“And now we’re being told we have to take around 28 bins and boxes down to the end of the road and put them on the pavement and there’s just no room.

“The new refuse collection point is next to the school and we’re worried for the safety of pedestrians and people using pushchairs on that stretch.”

Deeds to the houses on the village outskirts do not include the road and North Yorkshire County Council, which deals with highways and potholes, does not accept ownership.

Julie Toombes, Richmondshire District Council’s waste and street scene supervisor, wrote the letter to the 18 property owners affected in Croft that sparked the outcry.

It said: “It has been brought to my attention that the condition of the access road to your property has deteriorated and by continuing to use the access road in this condition, it could potentially cause damage to our collection vehicles.

“I am therefore writing to request that you make arrangements to carry out repairs to the road.

“Collection arrangements will continue from your current collection point until Tuesday, March 15, however if after this date you have been unable to repair the road it will be necessary to implement a temporary collection point for the collection of your refuse and recycling.”

Councillors from both authorities attended the meeting last week and agreed to continue “looking into” the matter ahead of the residents' deadline to repair the road.

County councillor Michael Heseltine said: “We can’t move forward until ownership is established and there are a couple of avenues we can explore.”