A RESIDENT fears his road will deteriorate into a gnarly "cart track" if a water leak continues to erode its surface.

Sutton Wick Lane in Drayton became punctured with potholes after water starting bubbling from the tarmac.

Brian Eastoe, 82, said: "It's dangerous, particularly when we've had severe frost and the water has frozen over. It's getting worse."

He said he has reported it to Thames Water at least three times, on top of complaints from neighbours including Brian Webb whose farm entrance is right next to the leak.

Mr Eastoe said: "They said they couldn't test the water because it was too muddy, which is ridiculous. It's been like this for three months. They've said they'll come out with specialist equipment but you don't need a test to see where the water is coming out. It's crackers. They've suggested it's surface water."

But rather than sit stagnant, the water gently froths from an apparent crack in the road and streams into crater-like potholes.

Mr Eastoe likened the deepest, which drops at least four inches into the ground, to that made famous in an episode of The Vicar of Dibley in which Dawn French plunges into a puddle.

He said: "Every time a car goes by it breaks up more and more. It's annoying having to have so many telephone calls about it - Brian at the farm said he's wasted so much time. Nobody seems to do anything, nobody listens. We'll have a cart track before long."

He referred to the reservoir Thames Water has wanted to build for decades on land near his house, adding: "They wouldn't need a reservoir for extra water if they fixed their leaks. The cost of repairs to the road will be getting bigger."

He said drivers who use the road, which has a dead end but serves dozens of houses, are forced to weave around the potholes "like an assault course" to avoid damaging their cars.

Neighbour Kim Ward, who lives in Sutton Wick Lane with his wife Mary, said: "We are very unhappy with it, it's breaking up the road and messing up our cars."

Becky Trotman, spokeswoman for Thames Water, said the issue was a leaking pipe and that engineers hoped to fix the problem soon.

She said: "The leak was first reported to us on March 4 and since then we’ve had engineers visit the area twice to carry out an initial investigation and plan the repair work. There is more work planned for tomorrow."

She said the cause of the leak will not be known until after the excavation work, but that sometimes developers break through pipes during building work.

Builders are currently digging up land next to Abingdon Road, at the end of Sutton Wick Lane, in preparation for a 73-home estate and sports pitches.