A government department has been branded incompetent by the leader of Douglas Council for failing to address basic maintenance jobs around the capital.
Council leader David Christian said there was a plethora of routine repair jobs that had been neglected by the Department of Infrastructure (DoI) which he called the ‘Department of Incompetence’.
Top of his hit list was a failure to repair seafront railings mangled in the storms earlier in the year and poles supporting signs which have been unpainted for so long they have rotted through and become dangerous.
‘Millions have been spent on paving Victoria Street to improve the appearance, yet basics like street signs and poles are in the worst state they have ever been. There are electrical control boxes with the bottoms corroded away and signs missing all together and poles that have virtually rusted through,’ he said.
Many areas of damaged railings along the seafront remain blocked off by unsightly yellow safety barriers with no repairs yet completed.
‘Last time it got this bad it was before the centenary TT races and the council took it on board.
‘We went round and repainted lots of street furniture and the DoI gave us a contribution to the cost of doing it. Now everything looks so bad again – in such a state – that we need to take some action,’ he said.
‘We are now at the height of the summer season and no work has been done on the promenade railings. We all know money is tight but you have to keep the basics up to scratch.’
‘There are poles supporting traffic signs (which are DoI responsibility rather than the council’s) that have rusted through and will now cost money to replace,’ he said, adding, one traffic sign in King Street had been reported by the council to the DoI as dangerous because it was corroded and in danger of falling down.
One of the big fears was giving a bad impression of the island during the tourist season, he said: ‘People direct complaints to me becuase they think it is the council’s responsibility.
‘I had complaints from hotel owners who hoped something would be done before TT.’
l What do you think? Does Douglas look shabby? Email firstname.lastname@example.org or write to us at the address on page 10.