Political representatives in the Cusher area have hit out at the “shocking” and “disgraceful” conditions of roads around Darkley in south Armagh.
Sinn Féin councillor Bróna Haughey has called for a true resurfacing to be carried out on the Mountain Lodge road in Aughnagurgan, saying: “We need to see a proper resurfacing of this road carried out to tackle the shocking state of the road surface.”
She said: “In recent times we have seen a number of remedial or ‘patch’ works carried out. However, these works have been quickly eroded, thus leaving the road surface in a dire state.
“The legacy of austerity budgets and repeated cuts to the block grant by the Tory government has left DFI with increasingly less money to tackle roads issues across the north. This has made it more and more difficult to secure full resurfacing for roads in our rural communities.
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Councillor Haughey added: “However, I have urged DFI to add this road to their list for resurfacing as soon as they have the money to do so. It is important that local communities have access to a safe road network and Sinn Féin will continue working to improve the quality and safety of rural roads.”
Meanwhile, SDLP Cusher representative, EmmaJayne McKernan has slammed the poor state of the roads leading to the village, saying they are “an utter disgrace.”
She said: “The two roads leading into Darkley are an absolute disgrace and I call on DfI Road Service to come out and see the road for themselves and explain if they think this is an acceptable state for any road.
“This is not a new issue, it’s long running and it’s shameful, the people of Darkley are being forced to drive on sub-standard roads. There are so many potholes, broken tar from patchwork jobs, and the road even falling away at places. It’s like something you would see in an off-road challenge not a public road to a small village.
“I have serious concerns for safety of road users, never mind the damage being done to vehicles on a daily basis. The main Darkley Road and the high road are so bad I’d say there is hardly a road as bad across the country.
“It’s a disgrace that there has not been a full resurface and remedial works at this location to bring the road back up to a decent standard. The people of Darkley deserve a better road than these into their village.”
She added: “I have written to DfI Road Service to request immediate action to improve the road network in and around Darkley and in particular the Darkley Road and the Upper Darkley road. I will continue to press for improvements here until they are finally delivered for the people of Darkley, all of whom are paying high rates and road tax and must wonder where their hard earned money is going.”