With the majority of upgrades to the towns shops almost complete and the demolition of Linehall Street & Charles Street ‘eyesore’, the town of Ballymoney is finally getting back on track.
Unfortunately one issue that is still yet to be addressed and is causing much anger among local shopper and business owners is the poor condition of the footpaths around the towns streets. Many of the paving bricks are loose and uneven and wet weather causes the voids beneath the paving bricks to fill with dirty water which splashed up when stepped on. This on top of the most important issue that they have become a serious hazard in parts of the towns main street.
Last year saw one lady fell at the top of Main Street in the town and required hospital treatment. Several shoppers have also already fell this year including two on the day of this years ‘Spring Fair’
Several of the towns Councillors have already made representation to Transport NI the department responsible for the towns pavements. Speaking to FUSE FM Ballymoney Cllr Alan McLean said, ‘The more people who raise concerns the quicker we can get something done. A number of constituents have spoken to me over recent times to complain about the unacceptable state of the footpaths around the town centre. These footpaths are a hazard and must be fixed before someone is seriously injured. I have written to Transport NI to call for immediate action. The council has also written to Transport NI requesting a meeting with all local representatives. This is something we can all work on together to ensure it gets sorted for all the people using our town.’
Another Councillor to be contacted by concerned locals and businesses was Cllr John Finlay. Cllr Finlay received this reply from Transport NI after he raised concerns with them.
Dear Councillor Finlay,
Thank you for your email regarding the above which we received .
This matter has been investigated by our Maintenance Supervisor for the area
and the current position was explained in his telephone conversation with
you earlier today.
I trust you find this helpful and reassure you that TransportNI remains
committed to maintaining the road network, as efficiently as possible, given
the resources available.
Assistant Section Engineer
The other Ballymoney area Councillors were invited to make comment on the matter but as of yet we reply. We did receive a reply from Cllr Cathal Mc Laughlin who said, ‘With not being too familiar with the situation within the town,there are other areas in the Ballymoney borough, outside Ballymoney town! Just wondering will your story include these as well??
FUSE FM Ballymoney also approached Transport NI press office for a statement to which they replied,
The Department for Infrastructure has specific policy guidance for the inspection and repair of defects within the public highway, including footways. This policy ensures that all roads and footways are inspected on a regular basis, commensurate with their usage, and provides clear measurable criteria which has to be satisfied before remedial action can be instructed. Consistent application of the this policy ensures a fair and equitable service across the entire network and enables the Department to programme remedial works in the most efficient and effective way.
The majority of the streets within Ballymoney town centre are inspected on a monthly basis with additional investigations of any specific complaints received by the Department. Any defects identified during these inspections, which satisfy the necessary criteria, will have repairs instructed within the required timescales.
Despite this there is still areas that remain hazardous. FUSE FM has identified at least 12 areas on a short 5 minute walk round the town.
If you have tripped, stumbled, fell or notice a dangerous area of pavement, then please do contact Transport NI directly or via one of your local representatives.
10 – 18 Adelaide Street
Phone number: 028 9054 0540
(Transpot NI is part of the Department of Infrastructure)