‘We have to pay for our own traffic calming and it will take time’ Easebourne villagers warned

Members of the Community Speed Watch recording the speed of cars through Easebourne
Members of the Community Speed Watch recording the speed of cars through Easebourne

Traffic calming schemes for Easebourne have been outlined in the wake of safety calls for action on the two main roads through the village.

Parish councillor Mike Noble, who heads the council’s highways group, told villagers at their annual meeting several schemes were underway to tackle speeding traffic.

But he warned that times had changed since the days when West Sussex County Council’s highways department would fund and install measures.

“Policies and funding have changed so we are having to do it all ourselves.”

He said although the county council would not fund projects in Easebourne, highways officers still wanted to control what was installed: “even where we can self fund, we have to tick all the boxes.”

He said he understood the frustration of villagers concerned about the dangers, but he warned the process took time and he promised: “Things will happen as soon as we can make them happen.”

Mike said the ‘Speed Watch’ initiative monitoring vehicle speeds had produced evidence that there was a problem with cars clocked travelling as fast as 68 mph.

The highways group had looked at the possibility of having ‘sleeping policemen,’ but had been told they could not be installed in main roads.

A temporary vehicle activated flashing sign had proved effective, said Mike, and the parish council was planning to buy its own for permanent installation.

He said gateways at village entrances now identified the move from a 60 mph to a 30 mph zone and had been funded with Chichester District Council (CDC) grants.

The parish council was also putting together a grant application to CDC for a ‘community highways scheme’ of traffic calming.

Easebourne’s Chichester district councillor Francis Hobbs said he sensed frustration among villagers that traffic calming was not happening as quickly as they would like. But he praised parish councillors for their ‘huge energy’.

“Schemes may take time, but they will make a huge difference,” he said.

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