Petersfield’s new High Street road surface must be ripped up and done again.

Before the failed resurfacing work things were even worse

Petersfield waited years for town centre potholes to be filled and the road to be resurfaced.

But when the work was finally scheduled, contractors only did part of the job. They said wet weather meant they could not resurface Chapel Street as planned.

Now, a council inspection has found the bit they did complete was done wrongly.

Everything may look fine on the surface, but assistant highways manager of planned maintenance at Hampshire County Council Richard Peach says the new material has been laid badly.

It means the whole thing must be ripped up and the work started again.

it has been determined that all of the new material has been laid to the incorrect specification and needs to be replaced.

Richard Peach, Assistant Highway Manager, Hampshire County Council

Before the project started County Councillor Russell Oppenheimer expressed confidence in the quality of the project. But how do his words sound now?

It’s going to be a really good job… a proper resurfacing. It’ll look good and will be certainly free of defects.

Councillor Robert Oppenheimer
Councillor Robert Oppenheimer

Hear our interview with Councillor Oppenheimer about the project.

Counting the cost

Officials say the cost of redoing the road will not be at the expense of council tax payers, but it’s unclear what went wrong. Were contractors briefed incorrectly or did they fail to follow instructions?

Either way, it will mean three more nights of disruption in the town centre.

The second attempt at laying a road surface is scheduled to take place from Monday 29 April.

This time, the council promises that Chapel Street will be done.

High Street resurfacing 2024
High Street resurfacing in progress 13 March 2024

So many questions

Like you we have questions about how something that seems so simple could go so wrong in the hands of professionals.

We have asked Hampshire County Council to make an expert available to help us understand what went so wrong and why it needs to be done again.

If you have a question just put it in the comments and we’ll aim to put it to the council when we speak to them.

Expect to see these guys back in Petersfield

Full statement

This is what Hampshire County Council has said in full

Subject: Planned Maintenance – EH897 – High Street, Petersfield – Carriageway Resurfacing Works Notification

Following a recent inspection of the resurfacing that was undertaken last month along the High Street, Petersfield, it has been determined that all of the new material has been laid to the incorrect specification and needs to be replaced. This will be undertaken at no additional cost to Hampshire County Council.

Along with the remedial works, we still need to carry out the resurfacing of the last section in Chapel Street to complete the scheme.

The works are programmed to start Monday 29th April 2024 and are expected to last 3 nights, during which time the road will be closed to through traffic from approximately 20:00 to 06:00hrs. The road will be open outside of these hours.

Information signs advising road users have been erected on site. A further letter will be sent to local residents and businesses, and a copy of this email will be sent to East Hampshire District Council and Petersfield Town Council to update them accordingly.

Please accept my sincere apologies for any inconvenience this may cause you and should you have any queries or require further information do not hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards,

Richard Peach

Assistant Highway Manager – Planned Maintenance

Highways