Cheshire council under fire for painting blunder


Staff reporter (Leader Live)

COUNCIL officers were left red-faced after they had to correct a spelling mistake on new road markings outside a Chester primary school.

Contractors were asked to put in road markings by Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWaC) outside of Highfield Primary School, Blacon, because of safety concerns for pupils after a number of near misses with cars.

Unfortunately the contractors mistakenly spelt ‘Keep Clear’ as ‘Keep Claer’ in bright yellow letters.

The council said the mistake was down to “human error” and it had already rectified the issue, but CWaC has come under fire from an angry councillor for repeated errors.

Speaking yesterday, a Cheshire West and Chester Council spokesman said: “We were made aware of the road markings mistake outside Highfield Community Primary School in Blacon as soon as the work was carried out yesterday and our contractors have been out to the site this morning to correct it.”

The error comes nine months after council contractors mistakenly painted school road markings outside Woodfield Primary School, Kingsway, Newton, four years after the school was demolished. That time the council was at fault as it had mistakenly told the contractors to paint the markings outside the site, which has been earmarked for housing for elderly people.

Blacon Labour councillor Reggie Jones said ‘Keep Claer’ formed part of a catalogue of errors by the council and said it was making it a “laughing stock”.
Cllr Jones said: “It is embarrassing really to the council and residents because it is not an isolated incident.”

There have been other signage errors in recent years which the council had had to rectify.

In 2012 eagle-eyed residents pointed out a new sign for St John Street was mistakenly called ‘St Johns Street’ and Bakers’ Row was called ‘Baker’s Row’, mistakenly suggesting one baker only worked on the famous row.

In the last few weeks another resident complained to the council that Water Tower Street had been mistakenly changed to ‘Water Tower Road’ despite the new sign being put just a few yards away from the old one.

Cllr Jones added: “Obviously there was the incident in Newton and Water Tower Street which was called a road instead a few weeks ago and there was the apostrophe in the wrong place on Bakers’ Row in the city centre. It keeps happening.

“The council leader likes to run the council like a business. The lack of clarity speaks volumes. These are basic errors and it is making this council more and more the butt of jokes and its reputation continues to spiral downwards. 

“I can understand one person making an error but there should be supervisors to keep an eye on it.

“Perhaps they should have asked the school children first before doing it.”

See full story in the Chester Leader

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