Senior Directors of Ringway have been hauled over the coals about
their failure to deliver an adequate Highways service since they took
over the majority of Highways work in Hertfordshire on 1st Oct last
Liberal Democrat councillors have been highly critical of the
performance by Ringway since November, by which time problems were
already coming to light. In an open letter dated 13th January Liberal
Democrat Leader Cllr Stephen Giles-Medhurst detailed 15 areas of poor
performance saying that the service was not good enough.
Two days later Ringway were issued with a formal “Early Warning
Notice” by the County Council telling them to address many of these
At a meeting of the Highways and Transport Panel on Tuesday (5th Feb)
afternoon Liberal Democrat councillors questioned and detailed their
concerns direct to Ringway Directors.
Ringway have now addmitted they have failed the deliver the service
they have should. They told councillors that they now have 50% more
people on the ground, with an additional 80 staff doing repairs than
in the middle of December and an additional 5 gangs dealing with
street lighting problems.
Even with this extra resource it may take till June, admitted Ringway,
to get the service level up the expected contract standard. They have
now put in place an “Action Plan” to address their weakness.
Councillor Stephen Giles-Medhurst said,“Frankly I am saddened,
dismayed but also angry that Hertfordshire residents have been so
badly let down by a major multi-national company that could earn £220m
over the term of this contract from our Council Tax. Their failures
to fix basic road faults, communicate with councillors and residents,
clear our drains or fix our lights is not good enough.
“Now it seems only after Lib Dem pressure something is being done.
Some county officers it seems knew of major problems months ago.
Residents and the Liberal Democrats want our faults fixed now not in
June and we certainly want Ringway to pick up the bill for extra work
because they could not do the job they were being paid for. At last
the Conservatives at county hall are looking at bringing in default
charges against Ringway and I will demand them to impose these” said
Cllr Stephen Giles-Medhurst.
Cllr Malcolm Cowan, (Lib Dem, Handside and Peartree) added, “They
seemed to just make excuses that they did not know what the contract
involved and it was somehow different, yet this company’s major work
is road repairs. It took almost two years to award this contact they
cannot use they did not know as an excuse”.
Ringway are due to attend the Full County Council meeting on February
26th to hear more criticism of their performance.