Are these the worst potholes in Donegal? That’s the question being posed by angry residents in an area in the east of the county who insist regular calls to local public representatives and County Council officials have gone unanswered in their ongoing quest to have local roads repaired.
Claiming their quality of life has been affected by the condition of a number of the roadways in the vicinity of the area from the Momeen Crossroads to Castledooey and Drumatoland near Raphoe, locals cite repeated damage to motor vehicles with one resident contending he has been forced to pay out 1,800 euro in repairs since Christmas as a result of potholes which he described as “deep as moon craters.”
He maintained: “In some places these potholes are around twelve inches deep and parts of the road have collapsed, they’re that bad. I’ve had to replace every bushing, shock and spring on my car, not to mention ruined tyres and wheels.
“We’ve contacted all five local elected representatives and not one of them has bothered to come out and investigate. The only way we’ll be taken seriously is by taking drastic action. These roads have to be the worst in the county.”
Another local resident, Gillian Lowry, who works in Letterkenny, said she was forced to travel over the potholed road surfaces or face an alternative significant detour.
“The roads are desperate, a complete disaster. My sister’s car has been damaged and there are more windshields broken because of the tar breaking away.
“There are a lot of houses around here and a lot of people use the roads including local farmers. Then you have the milk lorries struggling to get through them,” said Gillian who’s a native of the area.
“Fifteen years ago these roads were a pleasure to walk on but not anymore. A lot of walkers use them but there have been less of them this year because the roads have just got worse.”
She claimed the council had carried out resurfacing work at a T-junction in the townland of Castledooey but had returned after a week to dig a trench for pipe laying on the same stretch of road. “That certainly didn’t help the problem.
“I didn’t have one single canvasser call to our house during the election - I wonder why?”
Another resident insisted he would not have purchased his home in the area two years ago had he realised then how bad the roads would turn out. And, commented another local householder: “My daughters are refusing to visit me because of the state of the roads so I’m not seeing my grandchildren as often I should be. When they do get here, it’s too dangerous to take them out for a walk as you keep trying to step away from the potholes.”
The proprietor of the nearby Donegal Donkey Sanctuary, Danny Curran said many people have been unable to visit the premises at Castledooey because of the condition of the roads.
“They get to the sign but they’re not able to negotiate the road any further. We depend on donations to keep going but we’re losing out in terms of funding.”
The Sanctuary trains donkeys for special need purposes. “But we can hardly walk them on these road surfaces.”
Locals are now planning to set up a Residents Association in an effort to strengthen their case for road improvement works.