The photograph on the top left is of a pothole repair that Hampshire Highways has used in social media. It shows a crisply-laid repair with the edge protected by a sealant. An example of what the county council would like to show off.

The other two photos show the widespread reality on the streets of Winchester. Top right is a repair on Milverton Road in Fulflood that looks thrown together in 30 minutes. The photo at the bottom is on St George's Street, close to Belgarum's office. The repair has been lined with a sealant but the material started to disintegrate within days, yes days, of the workmen finishing a few weeks ago.

Belgarum asked the county council about the poor work and what oversight was being done by managers to ensure work was done properly, and to a  high standard.

This is the brief reply: “We are aware of these issues and work has already been scheduled to undertake the required repairs in the very near future, at no cost to the County Council.”

Lo and behold, that repair in St George's Street at least has been done. Be interesting to see how long it lasts.

Belgarum is no highway engineer but you don't need to be one to know poor quality. Might a suggestion be that the specification of the sealant be improved. There are many street repairs, especially after roadworks, that have been sealed and remain sound years later. It is important as this sealant prevents access by water. In the winter that water freezes and expands, acting as a battering ram against the repair. Over time it destroys the repairs and the cycle continues.

If the problem is not the sealant material then perhaps it is poor 'quality assurance' at the county council. Quality assurance (QA) aims to get things right first time and dispense with the attitude of 'oh well things can be fixed later'.

And this should matter to readers of the Chronicle. Because at the end of the day you are footing the bill. Council leader Rob Humby, can you ensure Hampshire Highways get the repairs right first time