You should report a problem with any highways in the county directly to Cornwall Council. 


To keep Cornwall's roads in the best condition possible, we have an extensive programme of patching, resurfacing, reconstruction and surface dressing.

  • Patching is usually done to repair potholes or replace a smooth/worn out road edge. It involves replacing the damaged layer.
  • When larger areas of a road surface deteriorate, resurfacing may be required. This involves removing the top layer (around 40mm) of the damaged road and relaying a new wearing course. A road closure may be required, depending on traffic flows and ease of access.
  • Reconstruction is needed when the carriageway has large areas of deterioration beyond the depth of the top layer. This involves replacing all the layers of the road (up to 190mm). This takes much longer to complete, and will usually be done under full road closure. 

Surface dressing

Sometimes the structural condition of the road is satisfactory, but there is a need to increase its skid resistance or seal the surface to prevent water ingress. This is where surface dressing is a suitable treatment. This increases the life of the carriageway in the most cost effective way, and is a quicker and cheaper option than full resurfacing.

Surface dressing utilises hot bitumen applied to the road followed by a layer of aggregate, which is compacted into the existing surface. Wherever we carry out such work, we set up temporary speed limits to prevent damage to vehicles until the surface is fully set. We then send mechanical sweepers to remove any remaining loose chippings over its early life.

Surface dressing costs around a fifth of the full surfacing costs, and it extends the life of the current surface by up to 10 years. The dressing also:

  • improves skid resistance and makes the road safer
  • waterproofs and protects the road against winter damage that causes potholes
  • prevents more expensive work being needed later on

Our surface dressing information leaflet provides more information on the surface dressing process.

Surfacing and you

From roadway repairs to full reconstruction, we have the skills and the capability to advise you on what will be the most cost effective solution for you and your business. We offer the complete package including inspection, measurement, design, quotation and delivery of the most appropriate surfacing treatment for your needs. We can provide:

  • Major commercial surfacing 
  • Car park surfaces
  • Patching and repair service
  • Reinstatement of the existing surfaces once you have undertaken utility improvements
  • Access roads
  • Driveways
  • Resurfacing entire carriageways 
  • Surface dressing
  • Anti-skid surfaces
  • Decorative surface coatings

We are highly-experienced in the application of the full range of surfacing treatments and have a full range of paving machines, so we are well equipped to provide you with what you need, when you need it.

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