From what I know of the technical specifications given to us by our contractors (currently working as Tier 1 contractor on HE and LA resurfacing packages; used to be a highway engineer for an LA) there hasn't been a change in materials used: it is still molten thermoplastic with colour dyes and glass beads. The most likely culprit is the local authority planning their resurfacing and re-lining works to coincide with the end of financial year chaos which results from the councillors not permitting any spending until the 11th hour - the issue there is you are laying in cold and/or wet conditions which causes the thermoplastic to either break up or not bond with the road surface and shatter off in chunks.

Ideally you want to be lining in summer when conditions are dry and hot, and resurfacing in spring or autumn when temperatures are warm but not overly so to cause melting. However what normally happens is everything gets hit just before Christmas, then they have a breather to see how much is left in the pot and have a mad dash in February and March when conditions are against them.

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