Good morning, and welcome to the Brighton Seagull and this week's Monday Briefing! This is our six month anniversary, and to celebrate we're switching things up—going forward you'll get the usual news in the Briefing on Monday, and Seagull Recommends, our food, drink and entertainment suggestions on a Friday. Woo!
News This Week
Neighbourhood scheme anger, Royal Mail site anger, everyone's angy
Hanover residents speak out against low-traffic neighbourhood scheme
The general consensus amongst residents of Hanover regarding the proposed low-traffic neighbourhood scheme seems to be one of the plans not being fit for purpose in the area as they stand.
Residents have been speaking out against the plans, expressing concerns over the lack of green space being offered to the neighbourhood, and asking for it to be paused and reconsidered so the plans are more environment-focused.
The proposed layout shows two pocket parks coming to Hanover when residents had hoped there would be more.
Lucy Dunkeyson, who lives in Hanover and made the Improve or Stop the Hanover LTN Facebook group, has shared an alternative scheme to the current one proposed which would bring 18 pocket parks to the area, remove road closures, add electronic speed indicators, speed bumps and signs asking people to drive carefully.
I’ve got rid of almost all of the road closures and some of the one-way restrictions.
I’ve replaced the closures with traffic calming measures. On some streets this could be speed bumps. On others, that perhaps already have speed bumps or need/want something more, it could be trees, planters, chicanes and so on.
For instance, a tree narrowing the Islingword Road end of Milton Road could help prevent drivers nipping down the wrong way as they do at present. I’ve also added places for planting, benches, and bike hangars.
Signs at the main entry roads to the area would remind drivers that they are entering a residential area. Places where traffic is likely to speed could have electric speed display signs.
Anthony (who did not want to provide a surname) who works as a taxi driver in the Queen's Park area often, said it would make his job 'nearly impossible' if road closures were implemented, making some journeys take three times as long 'at least'.
Royal Mail farmland sale paused
Plans to sell farmland to the Royal Mail have been paused, much to the joy of campaigners.
The Royal Mail had previously submitted a planning application for a delivery office at Patcham Court Farm, on the outskirts of the city.
However, opposition to the application on the council website has been fierce over the last few months, and a petition against it was started by Patcham councillors.
The pausing of plans comes due to discussions on a long lease for the farm, planned for Friday July 29, being dropped before a special meeting of the council's Policy and Resources Committee.
More than 250 people have responded in opposition to the plans on the council website, with just three supportive responses.
Stated reasons for opposition are:
- an increase in traffic in an already congested area;
- the risk of petrol and oil getting into an aquifer below the site;
- increase in pollution;
- the impact to animal life in local nature reserves, and;
- concerns over the history of flooding in Patcham and the impact the site being tarmacked over would have on this.
A comment in favour from someone who is employed by Royal Mail said it was 'much needed' and will remove 'significant traffic' from the city centre, as well as making the service more efficient.
Another says the plans are 'of good design, will create additional jobs in the area, support use of local amenities and are environmentally conscious'.
Finally, the third comment in favour said it was a good use of the site and preferable to additional housing, while offering suggestions like wildlife corridors, a carbon neutral site, and bat roosts to be incorporated.
🖋 News in Brief 🖋
- The RNLI has had its collection box broken into twice this month, outside its shop at the Marina. They said how they rely on donations to enable them to do their work and to train volunteers. It is hard to know how much was stolen—the box has been removed and replaced with a contactless donation machine in the shop window. Click here to donate to their fundraiser, and here to find out more about volunteering.
- Charlie Southall update: leaflets have been posted through doors across Hanover and stapled to the Montreal Arms, and it is suspected they were made by none other than the controversial Mr Southall. Needless to say, it's not gone down well. Have a look for yourself below, and to have your say on tile-gate, click here.
- Speaking of Hanover, a beep is reported to have been going off on Coleman Street since Friday morning. If anyone knows what it is and is able to make it stop, local residents would certainly appreciate it.
- Hollingdean Road is set to close for five days from next Monday, from the Vogue Gyratory to the railway bridge. This is to remove a crane from a building site and to install electrical cables to a student housing development. Traffic will be diverted via Union Road, and those in Freehold Terrace and Popes Folly can still enter Hollingdean Road from the railway bridge-end near Sainsbury's. It will close from 9.30am on Monday August 8 and reopen by 8pm on Friday August 12.
- The Downs Hotel, Woodingdean's only pub, has reopened! Get yourself up there for a pint.
The Big One
Marina? I barely know her!
What's happening? Around 500kg of debris has been cleared from the beach, from Brighton Marina to Ovingdean, by six volunteers from Beachy Head and Seven Sisters Extreme Plastic Objects Removal (BHASS Explore).
That's quite a lot of debris. What was it? You're telling us! It was mostly assorted fishing gear like crab pots, hooks, nets and buoyancy aids, bits of boat and plastic bottles.
Is it all recycled? Not all of it is recyclable, and most of it is decades old.
Why was there so much when the council hires litter pickers? A lot of the terrain is rocky, so it can be challenging. BHASS Explore says the beach clean is hard on the body, and involves getting into tight spaces. They said:
Dangers ebb and flow with the tides as a multitude of different rock and pebble underfoot conditions become exposed or disappear.
Coupled with windy, wet or stormy weather even the most experienced adventurer and explorer will face difficulties and become imperiled by the slightest lapse in observance and concentration to the immediate and short term future conditions.
Can I do anything to help? They are always looking for more people to attend their monthly clean, and in August are going to try and collect one tonne of debris—adding to their reported five tonne total.
What do they look for in volunteers? They specifically need people who like rock climbling and potholing, but also people who can walk and carry the debris. The work is difficult, and not for the faint of heart!