WIRRAL Council has announced it is to take back control of the borough's highways maintenance.

The move, approved today by leader Phil Davies, will come into effect in October next year after its current four-year contract with BAM Nuttall ends.

It means the authority will take over direct responsibility for key areas such as maintenance of streetlights, carriageways, footpaths, drainage, culverts and drains and pot hole repairs.

It will also oversee winter maintenance, Coastal protection infrastructure and minor highway improvements.

Council leader Phil Davies thanked BAM Nuttall for their work but said this was the right decision for the council tax payers of Wirral.

He continued: "Wirral Council has to ensure every pound spent is wisely invested and we get the best value for our residents.

"This decision is the right decision at the right moment - the contract with BAM Nuttall was coming to an end and we believe we can deliver this service more effectively by taking direct control."

Wirral's cabinet member for highways, Stuart Whittingham said: "This is a significant step in ensuring residents in Wirral receive the service they expect and the best value for the money we spend on our highway network.

"Wirral has hundreds of miles of roads, extensive coastal areas and footpaths.

"This means we will be in direct control of repairs and be able to ensure residents receive the best service we can possibly provide.”

The borough's highway network is the Council's biggest asset and consists of approximately 1,200 kilometres of road, which is currently maintained via the strategic contract with BAM Nuttall.