Well done to Sompting councillors Anne Godley and George Barton for organising a very successful public meeting on the longstanding congestion problems in and around West Street, the historic part of the village.
Despite a snow blizzard more than a hundred local residents turned up underlining just how big an issue this has become. Various solutions have been talked about for years but whenever there is a firm proposal to close of a particular road the parish council or some other body raised objections.
With the help of County Highways expert Mike Thomas the pair have put together a range of options which merit further investigation and might be trialled on an experimental temporary basis.
Whilst the cause of the problem is of course the pressure of rat-running from the clogged A27 and nothing permanent can be decided until future plans for the A27 upgrade and possible development in west Sompting are known, these sensible suggestions are worth consideration.
The audience gave a clear steer on their preferences and option one of doing nothing quite rightly received a deafening raspberry.
Predictably the closure of the Crown Post Offices at Shoreham and Lancing were the hot topic at our Farmer’s Market street surgery on Saturday.
In retrospect I should have produced a continuous video loop of myself giving an update on my understanding of what is proposed rather than repeating it to groups of constituents over the space of a couple of hours.
I have though recorded a podcast on my website with all the details given to me at my meeting with the Post Office last week.
Whilst I would not stop anyone signing the various petitions floating around at the moment it would be much more effective for constituents to write directly to the Post Office with their own concerns about what the changes would mean and I have provided the relevant contact details on my website and in the leaflets we have handed out around the town.
Thank you to the many constituents who wrote in support of my Private Member’s Bill to extend civil partnerships to opposite sex couples which aired again in the Commons on Friday. Alas the Government is still not committing to this common sense measure which rights an unintended inequality which sprung from the Same Sex marriage Act, and which has become law in of all places the Isle of Man.
The campaign continues to grow though and there will be other opportunities to bring about this overdue change. Again you can see my case on my website.
• If you would like to get in touch with me, please write to me at the House of Commons, London, SW1A 0AA, or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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