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City pavement 'black spots' with be dealt with

Published date: 26 September 2012 |
Published by: Jim Green
Read more articles by Jim Green


Traders and residents are unhappy with the way paving was relaid by contractors 

Blobs of tar have been left outside shops and cafes in Bridge Street 

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TALKS are underway to sort out unsightly tar blobs and ‘sinking’ pavements in one of Chester’s busiest streets.

Bridge Street traders and residents were left fuming when contractors dug up paving and relaid the street with tarmacadam.

Alfresco diners have since complained they ‘sink’ into the street and blobs of tar have appeared outside shops and cafes.

Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) plans to meet with Scottish Power and Gas Alliance to try and resolve Bridge Street’s ‘black spots’.

Contractors working for Scottish Power dug up the paving in July when they were carrying out emergency cable repairs.

They replaced the paving with tarmac but council officers say the solution is “visually incompatible” with the historic street.

CWaC has offered to provide some of its own stone flags to replace those damaged during the works.

Cllr Lynn Riley, executive member for community and environment, said: “Our talks with Scottish Power have been extremely positive and it is expected that the project will begin in the near future.

“The company acted within the reinstatement time, but the temporary solution was not perhaps the most aesthetically pleasing as far as Chester’s city centre is concerned.

“I am pleased that we have been able to expedite matters by eliminating the wait for suitable York stone which, I understand, can be something like four months.”

Gas Alliance dug trenches in the street when replacing gas mains but there have been problems with the joins between the paving particularly in warm weather.

CWaC maintains the gaps between the paving have not been laid to specification but Gas Alliance dismissed a claim from one trader in the alfresco dining area.

Cllr Riley said: “We have concerns with the standards of workmanship involved the current situation and have asked for a meeting with Gas Alliance in an attempt to resolve the situation.

“In the meantime, the current alfresco license includes a condition requiring the width of table and chair legs to span the joints to ensure that the weight is born wholly by the setts and so prevent them from sinking into the pitch.”

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