No solution yet for ‘disgusting’ A23

The A23 between Handcross and Bolney, where hedges have been removed. Picture: Liz Pearce LP1500586 SUS-150323-192626008
The A23 between Handcross and Bolney, where hedges have been removed. Picture: Liz Pearce LP1500586 SUS-150323-192626008
  • The removal of hedgerows on the A23 has revealed a ‘disgusting’ amount of litter
  • Mid Sussex District Council and the Highways Agency have not reached an agreement on when the road will be cleared
  • Drivers should be ‘ashamed of themselves for littering

No solution has been reached to tackle the ‘disgusting’ state of the A23, a road lined with litter.

Hedgerows at the side of the road were cut back by the Highways Agency recently, revealing the full extent of mess caused largely by drivers throwing mess from their cars.

Rob Whittaker has lived in Bolney for nearly 50 years.

“I haven’t seen it that bad before, I’m appalled by the condition of it,” he said.

“There’s everything from old smashed up cones to general litter. There’s big stuff there, old road signs, a bench smashed into the grass, loads of large plastic bits. People have been throwing old bagfuls of nappies out their windows,there are bags of beer cans. It’s disgusting.”

Mid Sussex District Council is responsible for keeping the road clean, but litter picking teams cannot safely clear it without the Highways Agency closing a lane.

Councillor Pru Moore, Cabinet member for Leisure and Sustainability, said: “It looks appalling and the people responsible should be ashamed of themselves. Our litter picking crews are eager to get out there.”

Often project such as this are carried out when roadworks take place, but there are none planned in the near future. A date has not yet been set to clear the road.

“We are in contact with the Highways Agency to find out when they next plan to close a lane for road works,” Cllr Moore added.

“We have been campaigning for a number of years now to get this stretch of road reclassified because it is a motorway in all but name.

“The Highways Agency have responsibility for motorway maintenance because of the dangers involved and we feel strongly that they should also have responsibility for A23 because they are the only organisation that has all the relevant powers and facilities to carry out this type of work.”

MP for Mid Sussex Sir Nicholas Soames is taking the matter up with the minister for transport.

A spokesman for the Highways Agency said: “We encourage people to ensure that they take their litter home with them.”