Residents have been left stunned as teams of cavers flock together each weekend to explore 134 potholes in a stretch of road less than 350 yards long.
Locals living in Hackenden Close in East Grinstead, West Sussex, said the pothole problem has 'got beyond a joke' – and that teams of international cavers are turning up take on the challenges of a complete new pothole system.
Arthur Henderson, 78, said that the road must now be in the running to be ‘the world’s most popular destination for caving enthusiasts' after he counted 5 teams from Europe, 6 from North America and 4 from South East Asia 'setting up base camp' in just one weekend in October.
He said the problem had got worse in the past year and that tourism officials at West Sussex County Council - which is responsible for maintaining roads in the area - are now publicising the destination to extreme sports enthusiasts around the globe.
Locals decided to write to the council en masse, with almost all the residents in the street - where a three bed home sells for £300,000 - sending the council a letter last week demanding that the potholes are properly filled in and to put a stop to visiting potholers who are setting up camp in front gardens and squeezing out the regulars from local pubs.
Local Horace Davies, 81, said: 'I moved here 50 years ago and I have never seen this road being done. It’s become a ruddy honeypot for trogladites and their hairy female companions. When they’re not crawling around underground they are up all night in their tents singing ‘On Ilkla Moor Baht'at’ and defecating in my rhododendrons.”
Another local, who did not want to be named, said: ‘I’m not against the potholers per se as they are doing some good, only last week one of them discovered the skeletal remains of a missing biker and his fossilised Harley Davidson.’
A spokesman for West Sussex County Council said it was 'aware' of the problem and were planning on resurfacing it this year. However potholers ‘bring a great deal of revenue to the local area’ so ‘the occasional dead motorist is worth the risk.’