LETTER: Danger warning was unheeded

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Your letters

I write with reference to the proliferation of ‘cycle events’ that seem to take place most weekends routing via Turners Hill, Ardingly , Lindfield and Haywards Heath.

These events are probably no secret amongst the cycling fraternity, but seem to take place with no prior notice to anyone else and most of them are also unmarshalled and unsupervised.

One particular event on Sunday August 22nd required the temporary restriction of traffic movements northwards on the B2028 whilst ‘The Peloton’ passed through. No prior notice whatsoever was given regarding this and I noted when walking up Ardingly High Street that many of the competitors were rather intimidatory towards anyone that they perceived as being an obstruction.

Am I not correct in thinking that only the police have the authority to temporarily close a section of road or implement temporary traffic flow restrictions? Despite making a complaint to the police, I am still at a loss to answer this, as their reply was almost quite contemptible.

I also complained to WSCC Highways Department who gave no reply whatsoever.

I then in desperation contacted a cycle club that organised an event, whose response to my letter was, “thank you”. Yes, just two words!

A further cycle event took place on Sunday September 11th on exactly the same route. Hundreds of cyclists but not one iota of prior notice to residents whose daily routine was to suffer severe disruption from the resulting congestion. Again, I wrote to the police warning them that any accident could have quite dire consequences.

Well. Now it has! Yet another cycle event took place on Sunday September 25th and an extremely nasty accident involving a horsebox, two cyclists, and a motorcycle,with injuries ensuing.

The reason I know this is because the more seriously injured pillion rider was left lying on the verge outside my step-daughter’s house until he was airlifted out by helicopter.

I will be writing to the police and the Highways Dept again soon and wonder if they are going to completely ignore me yet again!

May I thank you in advance for reading this letter. I just hope that the police and WSCC do too!

Chris Martyr

Bonfire Lane, Horsted Keynes

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