Yesterday afternoon Ashley and I made another journey to our suppliers in Chepstow to sort out a batch of problematic radios and to order a new batch of replacements, as our original equipment issue approaches the end of its life expectancy in the coming year. I returned to join Clare supper as she had two colleagues staying with us overnight, but then I returned to the office to work with Ashley on constitutional revision issues (yet again). When I got home, getting on for eleven o'clock, I had to hunt in Llanfair Road for a parking space, in anticipation of not being able to park in Meadow Street all next day, due to road surfacing. I got luck and was able to shoehorn the car into a space only a foot longer than itself. Old VW Golfs are great manouverers.
The road works team was with us by eight, but several people had not yet removed their cars, and the first couple of hours was taken up by the team knocking on doors to find out who had ignored the notices, hand delivered a couple of days ago. Some of the offenders were from neighbouring streets, and took some tracking down. I didn't see the tow truck being pressed into service, but it was ten thirty by the time work was able to start with a clear street.
A remarkable machine designed to scrape off the old decayed road surface, sweep up the bulk of the road stone and send it up a twenty foot conveyer belt into the back of an accompanying lorry, was first on the scene.
When they tackled the far end of the street where it opens out on to the back lane, a new sink hole appeared right next to the iron cover of a sewer access shaft. It's in the area where repairs to sink holes has been necessary at least four times since I retired. Why the subsidence occurs has never been tracked down. The road works team had not been briefed on this history and possibility of re-occurrence, by the Council's Highways department which commissioned the work. When I asked the men probing the hole about this, they merely laughed. Nobody tells us anything, they said.
Next the tarmac laying machine and road roller arrived, and the new surface was pressed into place with equal speed and dexterity.
My photos of a memorable couple of hours can be seen here.