The official dates for road closure are:
- Hollingrove Lane (Twelve Oaks to Hollingrove triangle) 5 July to 20 December 2019;
- Hollingrove Hill (Hollingrove Triangle to Oxley’s Green): 10 June to December 2019;
- Cackle Street (Twelve Oaks to the Darwell Hole cross-roads) 5 July to 20 December 2019;
- Rectory Hill 7 May to 9 June; Brightling Road (Oxley’s Green area) 7 May to 9 June 2019.
Will all these roads be closed for all this time? Probably not – experience shows that companies tend to “over-book” roadwork slots so as to be on the safe side – but who knows? “Access to properties will be maintained” we are told, but this means that you can access your property from one end of the road or the other but not necessarily both, so you may have to go the long way round – and it could be quite long. Take, for example, the official diversion route for the Brightling Road closure. If you want to go from (say) the Rectory to Swallowfield Farm, the official advice is that you should drive through Netherfield towards Battle, then on the outskirts of Battle, turn left and go down the A21 to Robertsbridge, and then in Robertsbridge take the Brightling Road. In case anyone thinks it’s still 1st April, you can verify this for yourself: the official diversion route can be found on-line by visiting this southeast water web page and then clicking on “Diversion route for phase 1”. It sounds very silly indeed, until you think “where else could they officially divert via?” It would be absolute chaos if they tried to send people down Brickyard Lane and Fontridge Lane.
Questions have been asked as to how far down Brightling Road the new water main will go. The map on the roadworks.org web site (whence the above information was taken) suggests that it will be just 180 metres (ie only as far as The Forge or thereabouts). The official description for this section of work is “Lay 180 metres of new drinking water main with associated services and connect to existing main – Works in conjunction with EB007-18545404/1, EB007-18545402/1 and EB007-18545401/1” Unfortunately even the world’s most powerful search engine knows nothing of these references. Therefore we don’t know to what extent, if at all, these works will benefit the rest of Brightling Road.
This was brought up at the recent Annual Parish Meeting, and we offered to try and get a representative from South East Water to come and talk to us about the work, at our meeting on 13th May (see above). At the time of writing, the parish clerk has contacted South East Water but has yet to get a reply. However I am quite hopeful that we will get someone. If a meeting is arranged it will, of course, be posted on the web site at brightling.community.