WEST Sussex County Council has confirmed it is expected to finish its widely-criticised works on West Worthing railway crossing ahead of schedule.
Worthing West MP Sir Peter Bottomley had joined borough council leader Paul Yallop in calling for action to be taken to prevent major trade loss to small businesses in the area.
In response to the Herald’s focus on traders’ calls to speed up the works, the county confirmed it is around a week ahead of its eight-week schedule.
MP Sir Peter had made his plea to West Sussex County Council chief executive Kieran Stigant to take action on reducing the works time-table.
Joining him was Worthing Borough Council leader Paul Yallop, who also added his concern on the maintenance, which began on Tuesday, May 8. The councillor was “greatly dismayed” at the county’s use of signs saying South Street was closed.
Bob Smytherman, the Liberal Democrat county councillor for Tarring, requested that parking restrictions be lifted along South Street and Tarring Road during the works.
Elaine Fraser, owner of Scrumptious Café in Tarring Road, said the scheme had been “killing her business”.
She said: “The temporary traffic lights they have put here as of yesterday have made things even worse. It has been a nightmare.
“So far, I’ve lost about £1,500 in trade over these three weeks and there are a lot of small businesses that will be killed by this.
“For the first week my café was just totally surrounded by bollards and it looked like I wasn’t open at all.
“I understand these works have to be done, but being given two weeks’ notice of them was just not enough when we have a recession on.”