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The condition of the A83 trunk road

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The Argyllshire Advertiser ran a front page story in last week’s edition (January 5) on growing concerns about the crumbling condition of the A83 and BEAR Scotland’s plans to address the problem.
The online reaction has been remarkable, with more than 17,000 people to date viewing the story via the Argyllshire Advertiser Facebook page and plenty of comment left on the page.
Below are a selection of comments:

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Duncan Black: ‘The problem being they go for the cheapest option every time which never lasts. The stretch between Arrochar and Tarbet they resurfaced a while back. How long did it take for the drains to sink? A week?
‘The stretch at Strone Point that’s destroyed – didn’t they resurface that last year? And look at it now. Furnace bends, its been a state all year, and only now when its almost impassable they are going to ‘patch’ it. I’ve nothing against the lads on the ground, they do a thankless job. It’s the staff sat in the office my gripe is with.’

Simon Taylor: ‘I travelled back from Glasgow today and the roads were in a disgraceful state. The vast amount of potholes made for dangerous driving conditions. Not sure what my road tax is being used for. Certainly not the Mid Argyll roads!’

Brian MacLennan: ‘Perhaps if they repaired them properly first time, they (and we) wouldn’t be left with this problem. The repairs done near Strone Point in 2016 were ridiculous. Instead of completely resurfacing a one mile stretch of road, they chose to only do the worst sections. It’s no surprise that a year later, the parts that were not done are now in a dangerous state. They can blame the weather and availability of materials all they want but if they did the job properly the first time out, everyone would be much better off.’

Jane Gallagher: ‘What about the state of the road between the [Lochgilphead] bus stop and the bottom roundabout. That’s wild!’

Iris Marhencke: ‘One needs to repair, not patch. The Furnace bends are terribly dangerous, as one finds oneself on the wrong side of the road to avoid potholes which when it has been raining look like harmless puddles -a totally dangerous set up.’

Donald Bowness: ‘Sums it up when bear are repairing the potholes at Ardrishaig bridge with cold tar and their workboots.’

David Philips: ‘For these big companies to make money and stay in profit they need to let the road get bad and apply for a big scheme from the government. They just can’t apply for money for one pothole as they won’t make anything. It’s the same with street lighting and anything these private companies are involved with. I just feel sorry for the workers, as they take it off everyone and is nothing to do with them.’

Craig Martin: ‘Petition is required to the SNP or higher up the food chain. Think I’ll go on the bus next time and save my tyres!’

Willie Robertson: ‘I’ve only one thing to add for consideration – timber wagons.’

Scott Staff: ‘Resurface damaged areas instead of patching them up, which only lasts a couple of months.’

Ami Harris: ‘I was at Glasgow yesterday and the road is an absolute joke. On my journey home the Furnace corners have been ‘filled in’. This will only last what a month or so before it’s broken up and opens up the potholes again.’

Margaretanne Green: ‘The road is a disgrace. Damage was done to my alloys and I got a burst tyre. Phoned BEAR Scotland, and they said I would receive a claim pack – still waiting. Time something was done before someone is seriously hurt with state of road.’

Kat Drummond: ‘Transerv did a far better job, but the contract was given back to BEAR, so back to square one.’

Stephen Lovie: ‘They were filling a few holes today, but given the rain it wouldn’t surprise me if they appeared again.’

Isabel Macleod: ‘A disgrace in this day and age.’

An open letter to Scotland’s transport minister, Humza Yousaf MSP

Dear minister,

I am writing to you as a matter of urgency regarding the state of the A83 from Tarbert in Argyll to Tarbert at Loch Lomond.

There are a number of seriously large potholes in which cars are now swerving in the road to avoid.

Some of the holes have been filled with soft tar but this lasts a couple of days. It really needs a permanent and urgent solution to fix this before someone is seriously hurt. I have included photos of the potholes in the main town of Lochgilphead to illustrate the size, and believe me the stretch I have mentioned is also showing holes of such magnitude.

If this was the state of the road between Glasgow and Edinburgh on the M8 the potholes would be instantly fixed because they are so dangerous. My question is why are we in Argyll yet again being treated differently.

I do hope you can assist us in Argyll before someone is seriously hurt or even worse consequences.

I look forward to hearing from you.

Cllr Douglas Philand


The potholed A83 road surface through Lochgilphead, as photographed by Douglas Philand. no_a02Philandpotholes01 and no_a02Philandpotholes02