Monkey Mag – International Lifestyle and Travel Blog

The UK’s Pothole Pandemic


There’s nothing worse than the feeling you get when you drive down the road and suddenly hit a pothole. Many of us find that, most of the time, we can avoid such a situation. But when we hit a pothole, we know about it. There’s the jarring moment when our wheel suddenly sinks below the surface of the road, a moment where we can actually feel the level of damage done to our vehicle. If we’re lucky, we get away without being hurt. But most of us are not lucky enough to escape damage to the vehicle.

Potholes are a pain. They can cause serious damage to our vehicles, and the frustrating thing about them is the avoidability. Some areas of the country don’t seem to have any potholes, where others have roads that are rife with them.

A recent study by Lease Car UK has found that there are indeed some parts of the country that have no problem with potholes, while others have seen local councils pay out huge sums to manage the damage done to vehicles. The results may be a little surprising.

So, which council has the biggest problem?

The Lease Car study found that Surrey has the biggest pothole problem. The pothole capital of the UK had a staggering 3533 claims for damages during the period 2018/19. This becomes even bigger a deal when you see that Hampshire received the second largest number of complaints in that time, at 2665 complaints. Yes, that’s right, nearly a 1000 fewer complaints than Surrey.

This may not surprise you. If you have travelled on the roads in Surrey, you’ll know that they have more than a few of the holes. But what is interesting is that huge gap between Surry and Hampshire. The other councils in the list are far away from Surrey’s numbers.

Of course, such a problem does come with a price tag and you probably won’t be that surprised to see that Surrey finished out the 2018/19 period with £323, 222 in claims from drivers.

And the smallest?

Well, the council that ended up paying the least amount of compensation was Islington. It paid out nothing (although it did have 23 requests). If you’ve been to Islington recently you will know that it has almost perfect roads, and hardly any road maintenance at all.

Over that 2018/19 period, the UK saw a total of nearly £3.5 million being paid out across all councils for pothole damage. That’s quite a lot, and we can see the same thing happening again.

Whether you’re driving a car you’ve bought, or a lease car, and even if you are successful in claiming damages, it’s a lot of hassle and stress when you have to approach a council and go through the damages process.

Have you ever been in a situation  where you were driving down a road and your car fell victim to a huge pothole (or two)? It’s not good. But have you ever had to approach a council and claim damages to your vehicle? Here is a guide I found with easy and clear steps to help you with that process.