Caught on camera: Dangers of Hurst High Street

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A Hurstpierpoint High Street business owner has spoken out about the dangers caused by the new road layout thanks to a £150,000 roadworks scheme.

David Hampson, from The New Inn, sent the Middy this series of photos showing cars trying to overtake lorries in narrow roads, cars mounting pavements and coming dangerously close to pedestrians, and cars ignoring one way traffic road signs.

He said: “ The new road system sometimes works, however so did the old road system sometimes work.

“People have made comments to me, to the effect that it is all about inconsiderate drivers, yes it is, but what has been conducted is a series of roadworks, not a series of driver awareness courses.

“The same inconsiderate drivers that swore at each other at one pinch point are now doing so over four pinch points.

“The road is simply too narrow at various give way points forcing larger vehicles to use the pavements.

“The loading bay which runs from 6am till noon is not big enough, the bollard has already been smashed off nor is it clearly signed.

“No one is around to enforce it between 6am to 9am half its time limit and the time during which most deliveries arrive.

“The other parking in front of the Post Office is not policed so cars are left all day.”

He said the scheme has not made it safer for pedestrians, nor has it made parking better, improved delivery access or traffic flow

He added that it has been bad for local businesses.

“Apart from 1 month disruption and at a cost of £200,000 what has it achieved, maybe the council should have listened to all the amateur traders, people and their livelihoods that create the heart of this village and make it the great place that is.”

He said the council has ‘shown a complete disregard for the needs of the traders, without whom they do not have a village’.

He said: “Without a vibrant village high street we might as well become a suburb of Burgess Hill.

“I just hope that some of the smaller shops can survive.”

Hurstpierpoint and Sayers Common Parish Council has responded to complaints made about the high street by saying it is working with Mid Sussex District Council to increase the parking enforcement.

A spokesman for the council said: “It is normal after the introduction of a new scheme that traffic takes a while to adjust. Together with the Highway Authority West Sussex County Council we will be monitoring traffic behaviour over the coming weeks, and if shown that further adjustments are necessary, then they will be investigated.

“We will keep a note of all comments from the public, both positive and negative, as part of the review process.”