Norfolk ranks seventh amongst peers in national highways and transport survey

13 November 2017

Councillors have heard today that an independent survey of Norfolk residents has resulted in Norfolk County Council being ranked seventh out of 31 similar councils for satisfaction with highways and transport services.

The National Highways and Transport Network Survey is carried out annually by Ipsos MORI. Members of the Environment, Transport and Development Committee were told that for the 2017 survey 3300 Norfolk residents, chosen at random, were asked to rate a range of highway and transportation services, including public transport, walking and cycling, congestion, road safety and road maintenance.

Martin Wilby, Chairman of the Environment, Development and Transport Committee, said: It’s no secret that nationally money is tight so it’s heartening to hear that by careful budgeting and our teams constantly looking to make the most of new technology or new ways of working we have been able to deliver a service that has a satisfaction rating higher than the national average.”

“Of course there’s always room for improvement so we will be looking closely at the results to see where we could do better. Initial analysis has shown us that there have been small drops in satisfaction with the condition and safety of roads however as we are constantly looking at ways we can make the most of the money we have and by bidding for extra funding from the government we hope satisfaction may improve in the future. We’ve recently secured an extra £3.05m from the Department for Transport for the new roundabout on the A140 at Hempnall to make the junction safer.”

One of the biggest increases in satisfaction in the survey was for the provision of drains, and for keeping drains clear and working, which both rose by 3%. It is possible this is thanks to the £10.3 million surface water drainage scheme in the Greater Norwich area which got underway in April 2015 and is set to be complete early next year.

Even though respondents in Norfolk rated street lighting as much less important than respondents did in many other areas of the country there has been a six point drop in satisfaction with street lighting compared to last year. However it’s hoped that the satisfaction rating may improve due to the planned upgrade of 13,500 residential street lights to new energy efficient LED units in the next 2 years. This is being done on an invest-to-save basis and will see Norfolk’s street lighting in the best condition it’s been for many years.

And Norfolk saw a 6 point increase in the score for local bus services which demonstrates the good working relationship with local bus and community transport operators that helps influence the services provided.

Altogether 121 local authorities signed up for the 2017 survey. Out of the 31 county councils and larger unitary authorities in the peer group, Norfolk ranked in the top 10 in for:

Condition of highways – 10th
Local bus services – 9th
Road safety education – 6th
Ease of access for people with disabilities – 8th
Community transport – 8th
Traffic levels and congestion – 8th
Overall – 7th

Notes for editors

The National Highways and Transport Network Survey was carried out during June, July and August 2017. The results can be found on the NHT Network website.

For political comment

Cllr Martin Wilby (Conservative) Chairman of the Environment, Development and Transport Committee, on 07920 286618 or 01379 741504
Cllr Terry Jermy (Labour) on 01842 630851
Cllr Tim East (Liberal Democrat), on 01603 743241

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