The mysterious case of Petersfield’s disappearing roadworks has been solved.
At the beginning of the month, residents of Pulens Lane and nearby roads braced themselves for chaos after signs went up advising that the road would be closed for a week’s repair works.
Yet the daunting prospect of having to drive their 4x4s an extra half-a-mile to circumnavigate the roadworks never materialised as the road was never closed and the signs mysteriously disappeared after a week’s inactivity.
Rumours of alien abduction swept across the bar at the Drum public house as a man who had once staggered down Pulens Lane claimed he’d seen the roadworks collected up and put on to the back of a spaceship with flashing lights by little luminous green and yellow creatures.
More prosaically, it turns out the council simply exhausted its budget.
A spokesman for the council explained: “March is the time of year when we schedule dozens of superfluous road repairs simply because we have to use up all of our budget – or it gets cut the following year.
“This year we scheduled Pulens Lane for action but the cost of preparing those yellow signs with the flip-over numbers has gone up and once we’d manufactured and installed the signs there was no budget left to actually dig up the road. We had barely enough for the workmen to brew up before they took the signs down again.
“We had some spray cans of white paint left over, so we went round and marked up a few potholes but don’t actually expect to do anything with them until at least 2013/14.”
Garstang Leaf-Blower, a resident of Pulens Lane, said: “I had heard this rumour from a reporter with the Petersfield Newswire, but bizarrely this may actually be true. I think it’s also important to realise that Pulens Lane is actually in the parish of Sheet, not Petersfield. The two don’t mix really.”
The council spokesman confirmed more non-existent roadworks are planned for June, August and September. No delays are expected until October.