More fears about railway crossing closure

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RESIDENTS and businesses have continued to express fears over the effects of a “devastating” eight-week closure of West Worthing railway crossing.

The West Sussex County Council works on traffic light signals have caused considerable alarm to small firms – that believe they will suffer major trade loss over the next two months.

Concerns have also been voiced by resident Olwen Quin, of Downview Road. Registered disabled, she cannot walk without crutches and has been unable to visit her daughter due to a perceived lack of information on routes of diverted bus services.

She said: “My daughter lives on the other side of the town across the railway and I’ve not been able to see her as I don’t know if there are other buses running with the crossing being down for eight weeks.

“I’m now not able to get a bus from the Co-op at South Street and I can’t afford taxis. I feel so sorry for the shop keepers in the area who will be losing money out of this.”

James Coull-Kidd, who manages a café in Tarring Road, believed West Sussex County Council had not given enough consultation.

He said: “I was lucky to have a letter handed to me by a county council employee on this.

“My customers are mainly the other traders and most of them learned about these closures from myself and they had not received any letter from the council.

“There were no dates provided for when the work will start and I had to contact the council by email to find out the starting date.

“The council seems to have forgotten that this piece of road was disrupted two years ago for three months when the road was closed. Why didn’t they replace the cables then?

“I have also been informed there will be no disruption to the railway during this eight weeks’ work?

“The council doesn’t believe in causing problems for large companies like Southern Railways, but the small businesses can just suck it up?”

The council responded that it complied with the statutory two-week notices for businesses and hoped it would complete the work quicker than eight weeks.