A NEWLY qualified driver has blasted the state of pothole-ridden roads in a seaside town and says they are giving her “anxiety.”

Natalie Myers, 48, lives in Alton Road, Clacton, and has only been on the road for three months, having passed her test in December.

Ms Myers says she is a slightly nervous driver at the best of times, but huge holes in the likes of Tower Road and Pier Avenue, are making her driving experience worse.

She said: “The roads are an absolute mess in this town. They are so bad, and I am constantly smashing my wheels into them.

“For a new driver like me, it is really terrible to have to all think about avoiding potholes.

“You have to swerve out the way of them and sometimes go on the other side of the road – it is dangerous and makes driving anxiety-ridden for me.”

Last year, Essex County Council, which is responsible for fixing potholes, was forced to defend its efforts after being branded the “pothole capital of the east.”

But Ms Myers, who admits being worried about damaging what is her first car, has slammed the authority’s repair works as half-hearted quick fixes.

“The reason I want to highlight this, is because something seriously needs to be done,” said Ms Myers.

“They are absolutely everywhere, and you can’t physically escape them. Even when the council fixes them, they open up again, because they aren’t doing a proper job.

“It is really excessive, and it isn’t normal to have this many problems with potholes.”

An Essex Highways spokesman said workers had carried out repairs in the roads which have been flagged by Ms Myers, but harsh weather conditions have meant only temporary fixes have been performed.

They said: “This winter, with heavy rain and then some freezing nights, has resulted in many more potholes than our crews can keep up with by doing full, permanent repairs, so often we do a quick “make safe” repairs, filling the hole with asphalt.

"This often lasts several weeks, enabling us to organise the much longer job of a permanent repair.

"Crews are working flat out to keep the roads safe, fixing the higher risk potholes first.

“Please keep to speed limits and drive to local conditions, which can include some lower-risk potholes at times."

Earlier this month the government pledged £2.6 billion to tackling potholes as part of this year's budget.