More than 100,000 dangerous potholes on local roads that have been reported to Britain’s councils currently remain unfixed, as authorities buckle under a lack of government funding.

A website setup by a cycling organisation has been logging potholes reported by drivers and cyclists and listed the councils with the biggest backlogs of repairs in their areas.

According to the research, Surrey has the most cratered local roads in the country – and it has almost twice as many reported potholes as any other council.

Surrey has more reported potholes unrepaired than any other region, new figures show

Surrey has more reported potholes unrepaired than any other region, new figures show

The total number of reported potholes yet to be repaired across the UK currently stands at a whopping 100,249.

The shocking figure was revealed by vehicle breakdown firm 24/7 Vehicle Rescue, which analysed data complied by pothole action site,

The website, run by Cycling UK, allows people – who are predominantly cyclists well-placed to spot the holes – to report potholes that damage vehicles and potentially cause injury to road users.

The records are kept up-to-date and shared with local authorities. A notification is then sent when one of the craters has been filled in.

Of all the UK councils, Surrey that has the biggest backlog of unfixed potholes.

There are currently more than 6,700 reported examples of them on roads in the region that pose a risk today.

Top 10 councils with the most reported potholes that haven’t been filled

1. Surrey County Council – 6733

2. Kent County Council – 3194

3. Hertfordshire County Council – 3124

4. Essex County Council – 2989

5. Lancashire County Council – 2703

6. Glasgow City Council – 2486

7. Buckinghamshire County Council – 2484

8. Hampshire County Council – 2411

9. Oxfordshire County Council – 2345

10. Cheshire East Council – 2306


Source:,figures taken on 29/01/18 and accounts for local roads (not major trunk roads)

A Surrey County Council spokesman told This is Money: ‘We’re working incredibly hard to improve Surrey’s roads – potholes are fixed at a rate of around 260 a day – but as Surrey has some of the country’s busiest roads, wear and tear really takes its toll.’

The next biggest headache is in Kent, which has 3,194 logged potholes to contend with just ahead of the 3,124 ruts littering Hertfordshire County Council’s tarmac at the moment.

A full list of councils and their unfixed potholes is available at the bottom of this page.  

A spokesman for Fill That Hole said the figures may be skewed by the number of cyclists in the region, but said it was a strong snapshot of the state of the nation’s poorly maintained roads. 

‘As cyclists account for a very small per cent of all road users, we suspect that our pothole statistics are just the tip of the iceberg,’ he said.

‘We know the scale of roads needing repairs is massive.

‘And this isn’t about pointing the finger at local authorities, or accusing them of not doing their jobs properly. We want to help councils to identify potholes promptly so that they can be scheduled for repair.

‘Highways authorities have a legal responsibility to ensure roads are in a safe condition. But they can only do so when they’re aware of the issues.’

Hertfordshire Council was third on the list with the most reported potholes still to repair, these signs put up by campaigners in Hemel Hempstead highlight people's anger

Hertfordshire Council was third on the list with the most reported potholes still to repair, these signs put up by campaigners in Hemel Hempstead highlight people's anger

Hertfordshire Council was third on the list with the most reported potholes still to repair, these signs put up by campaigners in Hemel Hempstead highlight people’s anger

The website was also quick to acknowledge that authorities currently have their budgets strangled by a lack of government funding. 

In November, Chancellor Philip Hammond promised an additional £45 million fund to tackle potholes across England in 2017 and 2018. However, it appears that the injections of cash aren’t being split evenly between Highways England (responsible for major trunk roads in England) and local authorities.

Last week, the Local Government Council confirmed that it would only be provided with £21,000 per mile for the upkeep of routes across all English councils over five years between 2015 and 2020.

In comparison, the Government was providing £1.1m per mile to maintain its strategic road network over the same period – 52 times more than what local authorities are receiving. 

Councils have had budgets slashed by the Government as part of austerity measures and with vital services to protect, they may be choosing not to spend money on fixing roads. 

Surrey County Council told This is Money it could do more to catch up with the backlog of potholes it faces and reduce the impact of them if it had more financial support.

‘We face a £40m funding gap over the next five years and while our Operation Horizon project [its highway maintenance investment programme] has seen hundreds of miles of roads rebuilt to make them pothole-proof for at least a decade, we would like to do more which is why we think busier roads should get more government funding,’ the spokesman said. 

Fill That Hole’s representative described the funding situation as the Government using a ‘sticking plaster to mend a broken leg’ and added ‘local authorities can only work with what they’re given’. 

Philip Hammond promised a £45 million fund to tackle potholes in England this year, though it appears the money isn't being split evenly between Highways England and local councils

Philip Hammond promised a £45 million fund to tackle potholes in England this year, though it appears the money isn't being split evenly between Highways England and local councils

Philip Hammond promised a £45 million fund to tackle potholes in England this year, though it appears the money isn’t being split evenly between Highways England and local councils

Local councils deal with over 1 million potholes a year

A report published in October last year found that a whopping 1,031,787 potholes were reported to local councils in 2016.

The average depth was said to be 40mm – big enough to damage tyres, alloy wheels and car suspension and likely to cause accidents if ridden into by cyclists and motorcyclists – something which resulted in £3.1 million in compensation being paid out to victims of potholes.

Added together, the nation’s pothole problem is 25 miles deep, the comparison site reported. 

And an RAC report last week suggested the problem is only getting deeper, as it had tracked an 11 per cent increase in pothole-related breakdowns in the final three months of last year.

Ranjen Gohri, director of 24/7 Vehicle Rescue, said it had experienced a spike in pothole-linked breakdowns, similar to what the RAC had seen. 

‘The figures aren’t going down. And they’ll only continue to rise as the Government continues to fail to invest in our road infrastructure,’ Mr Gohri said.

‘The underlying problems that cause the potholes are not being remedied.

‘They simply fill the hole as a temporary measure before this deeper defect returns with a vengeance a few months, or even weeks, later.

‘Yes, it’s more expensive and intrusive to repair the road properly, but the current approach is a false economy.’

Around 6,500 cyclists injured by potholes each year, says Cycling UK

Some 6,500 cyclists are injured by potholes each year, says Cycling UK

Some 6,500 cyclists are injured by potholes each year, says Cycling UK

Some 6,500 cyclists are injured by potholes each year, says Cycling UK

Cycling UK says around 6,500 cyclists are injured because of potholes each year in the UK.

Sam Jones, Campaigns Coordinator at the organisation said: ‘While the number of KSIs (Killed and Seriously Injured) due to defective road surfacing was thankfully down in 2015, the overall trend is worryingly on the up. 

‘If the roads were in a fit state, there would be no need for cash-strapped councils to be paying out nor families across the country having to struggle with the loss of a loved one.

‘Rather than building new roads, the Government should adopt a ‘fix it first’ policy. The UK has an estimated £12 billion pothole problem that a £6 billion pothole fund is meant to fix by 2021.

‘If the Government was serious about mending our roads, it would reallocate funding from the £15 billion Road Investment Strategy and give local authorities the means to bring Britain’s roads into an acceptable condition.’

Aberdeen City Council 353
Aberdeenshire Council 121
Angus Council 99
Argyll and Bute Council 115
Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council 223
Bath and North East Somerset Council 402
Bedford Borough Council 23
Bedfordshire County Council 121
Birmingham City Council 1322
Blackburn with Darwen Borough Council 103
Blackpool Council 108
Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council 20
Bolton Council 1
Borough of Poole Council 63
Bournemouth Borough Council 169
Bracknell Forest Borough Council 66
Bradford Metropolitan District Council 261
Bridgend County Borough Council 71
Brighton and Hove City Council 163
Bristol City Council 236
Buckinghamshire County Council 2484
Bury Metropolitan Borough Council 294
Caerphilly County Borough Council 66
Calderdale Council 160
Cambridgeshire County Council 1470
Camden Council 578
Cardiff Council 817
Carmarthenshire County Council 51
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Ceredigion County Council 35
Cheshire County Council 0
Cheshire East Council 2306
Cheshire West and Chester Council 8
City and County of Swansea 173
City of London 122
City of York 165
Clackmannanshire Council 29
Comhairle nan Eilean Siar 8
Conwy County Borough Council 100
Cornwall Council 417
Coventry City Council 395
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Darlington Borough Council 0
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Derby City Council 56
Derbyshire County Council 1004
Devon County Council 2301
Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council 137
Dorset County Council 427
Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council 185
Dumfries and Galloway Council 1045
Dundee City Council 199
Durham County Council 1
East Ayrshire Council 243
East Dunbartonshire Council 275
East Lothian District Council 205
East Renfrewshire Council 122
East Riding of Yorkshire Council 401
East Sussex County Council 950
Essex County Council 2989
Falkirk Council 140
Fife Council 415
Flintshire County Council 90
Gateshead Council 6
Glasgow City Council 2486
Gloucestershire County Council 1848
Greenwich Council 142
Gwynedd Council 114
Halton Borough Council 71
Hammersmith and Fulham Council 4
Hampshire County Council 2411
Haringey Council 558
Hartlepool Borough Council 0
Herefordshire County Council 594
Hertfordshire County Council 3124
Inverclyde Council 91
Isle of Anglesey County Council 25
Isle of Wight Council 368
Kent County Council 3194
Kingston-upon-Hull City Council 151
Kirklees Council 630
Knowsley Metropolitan Borough Council 242
Lancashire County Council 2703
Leeds City Council 1569
Leicester City Council 296
Leicestershire County Council 808
Lewisham Council 198
Lincolnshire County Council 1518
Liverpool City Council 779
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham 86
London Borough of Barnet 663
London Borough of Bexley 104
London Borough of Brent 364
London Borough of Bromley 261
London Borough of Croydon 979
London Borough of Ealing 255
London Borough of Enfield 137
London Borough of Hackney 363
London Borough of Harrow 161
London Borough of Havering 75
London Borough of Hillingdon 319
London Borough of Hounslow 436
London Borough of Islington 1
London Borough of Lambeth 926
London Borough of Merton 286
London Borough of Newham 108
London Borough of Redbridge 37
London Borough of Richmond upon Thames 420
London Borough of Sutton 37
London Borough of Tower Hamlets 248
Luton Borough Council 46
Manchester City Council 1218
Medway Council 98
Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council 24
Middlesbrough Council 1
Midlothian Council 166
Milton Keynes Council 333
Monmouthshire Council 71
Moray Council 69
Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council 131
Newcastle City Council 7
Newport City Council 56
Norfolk County Council 1387
North Ayrshire Council 80
North East Lincolnshire Council 99
North Lanarkshire Council 135
North Lincolnshire Council 89
North Somerset Council 822
North Tyneside Council 12
North Yorkshire County Council 1453
Northamptonshire County Council 1179
Northumberland County Council 7
Norwich City Council 64
Nottingham City Council 315
Nottinghamshire County Council 861
Oldham Council 256
Oxfordshire County Council 2345
Pembrokeshire County Council 49
Perth and Kinross Council 200
Peterborough City Council 63
Plymouth City Council 305
Portsmouth City Council 51
Powys County Council 89
Reading Borough Council 76
Redcar and Cleveland Borough Council 0
Renfrewshire Council 1182
Rhondda Cynon Taff County Borough Council 68
Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council 128
Rotherham Metropolitan Borough Council 205
Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea 9
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead 221
Rutland County Council 21
Salford City Council 156
Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council 91
Scottish Borders Council 114
Sefton Council 211
Sheffield City Council 900
Shetland Islands Council 1
Shropshire County Council 386
Slough Borough Council 38
Solihull Council 407
Somerset County Council 641
South Ayrshire Council 160
South Gloucestershire Council 866
South Lanarkshire Council 486
South Tyneside Council 0
Southampton City Council 527
Southend-on-Sea Borough Council 122
Southwark Council 615
St Helens Council 134
Staffordshire County Council 1513
Stirling Council 195
Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council 574
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council 0
Stoke-on-Trent City Council 148
Suffolk County Council 1157
Sunderland City Council 5
Surrey County Council 6733
Swindon Borough Council 164
Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council 3
Telford and Wrekin Council 22
The City of Edinburgh Council 1576
The Royal Borough of Kingston-upon-Thames 455
Thurrock Council 64
Torbay Council 91
Torfaen County Borough Council 20
Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council 433
Vale of Glamorgan Council 174
Wakefield Council 244
Walsall Council 260
Waltham Forest Council 83
Wandsworth Borough Council 1074
Warrington Borough Council 441
Warwickshire County Council 1018
West Berkshire Council 478
West Dunbartonshire Council 109
West Lothian Council 66
West Sussex County Council 2112
Westminster City Council 734
Wigan Council 131
Wiltshire County Council 1321
Wirral Metropolitan Borough Council 299
Wokingham Borough Council 149
Wolverhampton City Council 71
Worcestershire County Council 978
Wrexham County Borough Council 247
Source:,figures taken on 29/01/18 (only accounts for local roads and not major trunk roads)


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