The Pothole Diaries: Day 1

The country’s roads are in as bad a state as we can remember.
In the aftermath of the ‘big freeze’,
races are being cancelled, rims are getting wrecked and riders are coming a cropper.

And potholes are to blame – big ones, little ones, treacherous sunken ones, repeated rutted ones, cavernous and unapologetic ones.

With over 27,000 reported in the country and a record 2,700 complaints sent to the CTC’s FillThatHole campaign so far this month, Cycling Weekly has decided to take its own inimitable action – by reporting and adopting our own pothole.

CW's adopted pothole
CW’s very own pothole. Notice the ironic roadworks in the background.

Day 1
We’d spotted a yawning hole just a minute from the office during a lunchtime ride, just crying out for adoption. Closer inspection on foot confirmed that, given time, this blighter has the potential to be big.

Really big. Swallowing-small-children-and-domestic-animals big.

There wasn’t a minute to lose. We reported it to the CTC’s FillThatHole website; they have christened it Hazard 27310 and subsequently reported it to the Highway Authority.

All that’s left is to sit, wait and see how long our pothole takes to get filled – and how large it grows.

Detailed pothole view
An in-depth view of Hazard 27310. Aka Percy the Pothole

The vital statistics
Measurements: 25cm horizontal x 23cm vertical
Depth: 3cm
Situated: On the junction at Coombe Road and Park Lane in Croydon, fifty centimetres from the kerb and just in front of the stop lines.
CTC file:
Status: Reported to the Highway Authority

Day 1 observations
The pothole itself contains lots of tiny fragments of tarmac and stone, where the road has been worn away. It’s difficult for cars to dodge – and a fair few don’t want to risk busting their axles on it – and even harder for cyclists.

As you will see in the first photo, it is, ironically and frustratingly, positioned mere metres from existing roadworks.

The CTC’s offering of Hazard 27310 doesn’t quite have the right ring to it, so we need a warm and cuddly name for it. Alliterative suggestions such as Paul and Percy are currently gaining support at the moment.

Situated at a busy crossroads, the amount of traffic means that Paul/Percy has the potential to grow with ominous speed. 

We will be following developments very closely in the next few weeks. Will it grow bigger and deeper? Will it get fixed? Be careful out there and stay tuned for the next installment from CW’s rim-wrecker.

Have you clocked a giant pothole in your area? Take a photo and send it to

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