COUNCILLOR Bantick is spot on (Observer, October 4, letters) with his comments about the High Speed rail 2 project with projected costs of £42.5 billion (and no doubt rising) with not an inch of track laid.
As he says, there is much to do enhancing the day-to-day railway and the Hastings-Ashford line is a classic example - all the more so when you compare it - overcrowded two-coach trains on a substantially single line track - with Ashford International where 125mph trains get you to St Pancras, with its excellent transport hub, in 37 minutes on High Speed 1.
Remember all the pre-privatisation waffle 20 years ago? The Ashford line would be electrified, we’d have a station at Glyne Gap, St Leonards Marina would be re-opened and the Pevensey to Polegate link would be put back (that would knock half an hour off the trek to Victoria, Brighton in 35 minutes etc etc).
Since then - big bucks on High Speed 1 to St Pancras while all those local projects remain tucked away in the ‘might get round to it’ folder. And in the intervening years, Ore has changed substantially with the college and new housing - but the station remains an unstaffed halt.
There are projects and campaigns like this the length and breadth of the country that deserve funding before the Government blows billions on HS2. Get the day-to-day railway sorted first.