YOUR correspondents protesting against the Link Road are too late!
As long ago as November 2007 an Observer headline announced ‘Yes to the Link Road’ and over a year earlier I, and others, alerted your readers to the negative impact this unwanted road would have on Hastings.
Sadly, our warnings were ignored and now the road is being built to reduce traffic on the Bexhill Road and thereby satisfy EU emissions laws (and pay for itself through regeneration income).
It may, but with a (conservative) official estimate of 26 per cent increased traffic on the already overloaded Ridge, it will be this road which will then have to be by-passed for the same reason. Then taxpayers will have to fund another bypass.
Also, the heady days of 2006 are long gone; where are the keen developers now?
While it is too late to prevent this planners’ path, it is not too late to fight for adequate improvements to The Ridge, the main road linking the A21 with the A259, which, with its side roads, will bear the brunt of traffic entering and leaving the Link Road.
Without such improvements the quality of life for residents, businesses and staff and users of the Conquest Hospital, the cemetery the three schools and the Fire Station will deteriorate rapidly.
I urge people who will be affected by the fall-out from the Link Road to join and support their local organizations. Losing an individual vote doesn’t matter, but the possibility of losing hundreds will make politicians listen and act.
These local groups then need to work together to ensure that their members’ needs are met by County and Hastings’ councillors, MPs and the Police Commissioner.
Our association has been fighting for years now for a roundabout at the top of Elphinstone Road and for a pedestrian crossing nearby, as at the Conquest. This is but one example of what people power may achieve.
It is too late to prevent the Link Road, but concerted action now will mitigate its impact on our lives. But it must be now, not another seven years hence.
Pilot Field Area Residents’ Association