Monday, 15 April 2013

Hastings local issues round-up

Back to serious matters.  I fancy a rant on some local issues.....
     Number One:  the Bexhill/Hastings Link Road is going ahead. Work will commence any time. This is very sad. I assume the decision was entirely driven by the money on offer. Still it is a done deal now, and one can only worry about what happens next. Massive improvements will be needed to manage the traffic at some junctions, e.g at Baldslow, and I don't see any real commitment to doing this. And what about the Ridge?
     I do feel fed up with the environmental protesters.  Why leave it until it is too late to protest? The row about this road has been going on for years. Why couldn't they get themselves together earlier?
     As Battleaxe said over a year ago (see Hastings Battleaxe), little different will happen to regenerate the fortunes of Hastings unless the A21 is improved. The trouble is, many people have been led to believe faulty nonsense. Was talking to a woman the other day who still thought the traffic problem on the sea-front road would be solved by the 'relief' road.
Dormouse snoozing in business park?
Nor will the boggy bulldozed acres of mud beside the new road be suddenly filled with thriving new enterprises - and, incidentally,  if they were, what would have happened to the dormice for whom they are apparently going to build tunnels?  Dormice don't live in business parks. (That is quite a nice title for a story).
    Number Two: the plans for the new Tesco in Ore have been approved. This is an unimaginative decision which is not taking the views of the local community into account, or doing the best for the survival of the local shops. I have read that the planners' hands were tied due to the nature of planning legislation, but why do they just sit back and accept it?. Battleaxe has rehearsed the arguments against Tesco on here before.  See also this article in Hastings On-Line Times.  How feeble can that Planning Committee be? Going on from that, I also gather that Aldi is moving into the B & Q store in Ore. Wow, talk about hammering the nails into the coffins of those poor Ore shops. Mind you, I hate Aldi less than Tesco. One senses that Tesco are moving into Ore out of plain competitive selfishness - simply to grind the Co-op into the dirt. Aldi are at least saying they will provide free parking for Ore shoppers, and I do think their range of goods provides a viable alternative to the stock sold by the mainstream supermarkets.
    Number Three: the quality of the sea water off the Hastings and St Leonard's beaches. This does not seem to be given sufficient priority, and we are told that the water will not meet new EU cleanliness regulations. I understand that many homes have illegal plumbing. Who is sorting that out? I also remember about the Bulverhythe drain outlet 'turning septic' or something weird. Certainly the water flowing into the sea looks horrible, and given how near to the land-fill site that stream flows, I am not surprised it is polluted. I wouldn't fancy swimming down there. Talking of land-fill and the tip, we went to the tip the other day after a gap of several months. I know this is a small point compared with the others, but:
    Number Four: no sign of a charity store at the Freshfields tip. The tip seems to be working well but there is no evidence of any salvage of reuseable goods.  Many months ago Battleaxe wrote a blog post about this. I did say I would start a campaign for a tip store, and I didn't, so presumably I only have myself to blame.
And finally:
    Number Five: Parking at Rock-A-Nore. It was a lovely sunny day on Sunday, and the entire road was jammed with stationary cars, either trying to get into the car park or leaving it. A sign right down the end said 'No Spaces', but at the railway station end of the car park, there was lots of room.  It is clearly a shambles, and I pity the poor sods in their cars. What is needed is this. Firstly, the whole car park needs to be properly surfaced and marked out, with direction arrows to guide cars round.  Secondly, an electronic sign at the Winkle Island end of the road advertising the number of spaces, so cars would know whether or not to start queuing (and that junction needs improving). Then, another electronic sign at the entrance to the car park, indicating  the approximate location of spaces. Thirdly, one vehicle entrance to the car park, where cars are counted in, and one exit.  How can this be so difficult?  It is not as though car park management technology has yet to be invented.....

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