Maintenance of Roads & Paths

Roads and paths inevitably deteriorate and can get overgrown with brambles and other bushes. One of the difficulties associated with reporting faults on them, such as pot-holes or fly-tips, is knowing which local authority is responsible. Roads, bridleways & byways come under the jurisdiction of the County Council whereas paths through parks and those along former railway lines which are not classified as bridleways are maintained by the District Council. In addition, you may not know which District Council's area you are in when you see the fault, for example the Alban Way is partly in Hatfield. Moreover, sometimes the District Councils carry out highway maintenance on behalf of the County Council. 

The simplest way round these problems is to report faults via the website or mobile-phone app Fix My Street, (or for pot-holes only, Cycling UK's Fill That Hole). If you have a mobile  phone with you when you see a fault, take one or two photographs of it (one picture is worth 1000 words) and, possibly later if it is more convenient, use the relevant app to make a report & upload the photographs.  The reporting procedure requires you to pinpoint on a map the location, so an advantage of making the report immediately is that if your phone has location services enabled it knows exactly where you are. If you don't have the app on your phone, you can subsequently transfer the photos to  a laptop or desktop PC and then make a report via one of the websites. This should only take about 2 minutes! Such a report is then redirected to the relevant local authority and from which you should subsequently receive an acknowledgement via e-mail.

There are various options to pinpoint the location. When you get home, you can find out where you took the photos by selecting one in your photos app and using the information tab (assuming you have the location settings on). Alternatively, call up a mapping app while you are in situ and take a screenshot of your location.  Another option is to make use of What3Words. Here's a short video to simplify reporting of potholes (also works for fly tips and other issues) by using the What3Words app, which puts the three word location identifier onto the photo.

You can then make a report to the relevant local authority..... ah, but which authority is that, and how to contact them?   Symondshyde Lane is in Welwyn Hatfield, not St Albans.

Well, there's an app for that... we suggest ClearWaste or  FixMyStreet, which use the location that you supply to work out which local authority your report should be sent to. If you have time, you can make the report in situ when you take the photos; the app knows where you are when you do this so you don't have to tell it.  You may find the flytip has already been reported.

If you are confident that the fault is the responsibility of Hertfordshire County Council, you can report direct using HCC's fault reporting webpageSt Albans District Council is maintaining verges, as explained on their Grounds Maintenance webpage. If you have a MyStAlbans account you can report online; you will need a photograph to validate the report. Other ways to report are listed on their Green Space webpage.