THERE are fears that major roadworks due to start again on Monday could delay rail replacement buses used by commuters travelling to London.
The Hastings to Ashford line closed earlier this month for nine weeks for repairs to the Ore Tunnel, and in the meantime a bus service is transporting passengers between stations.
Now people from Hastings using this route are set to be hit by roadworks in the Rye area.
Stuart Harland, chairman of rail watchdog Marshlink, said: “There are overnight roadworks between Winchelsea and Rye over four weeks and these could affect the two ends of the day.
“There are also roadworks from Rye to Guldeford – these too should take four weeks but are throughout the day with supervised two-way traffic signals and could involve some diversions via Camber and Woolpack Corner to Brookland.
“The route taken by the replacement buses is expected to remain along the Military Road and so via Appledore Station. However, MLAG’s concern has been, and continues to be, the route buses take when leaving Rye Station. At the moment buses exit the car park at Rope Walk and turn right at the small roundabout into Cinque Ports Street and then rejoin at Station Approach.
“The concern is that this could be a very congested route when the A259 works re-start. MLAG would prefer buses to turn around in the car park area and then leave via Station Approach but representations on this route have not been viewed positively. If Cinque Ports Street does become more congested MLAG will make further representations to change this part of the route.”
He added: “Passengers on the Marshlink line have now had more than a week’s experience of the replacement bus service resulting from the blockade on the entire line between Ashford and Hastings. It is somewhat fortunate that the weather has been reasonably good over this period although this remains a continuing concern.”
There could be further delays facing residents at Doleham and Three Oaks with road bridges set to close at some point during the rail blockade for extensive works
Network Rail has said residents will receive individual letters about the works to be undertaken on the two bridges and their timing.
The Marshlink Action Group has set it’s AGM for 7.15pm on Wednesday March 14 at The George Hotel in Rye.