Call for action on signs confusion in Cliffe area of Lewes

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A campaign to stop increasing levels of illegal vehicle use in the Cliffe area of Lewes seems to be making progress.

Lewes Town Councillor Matt Kent took up the issue on behalf of frustrated local residents and has now had a positive response from East Sussex County Council.

It told him of plans to make some improvements to the confusing road signs which, in part, contribute to the problems between Railway Lane and Morris Road.

Cllr Kent said: “The county council has spent many hundreds of thousands of pounds trying to pedestrianise Cliffe High Street, but vehicles are still using the road either as a rat run, or becasue of confusion from the prohibition signage on Railway Lane.”

Cliffe High Street is only accessible for trade and blue badge holders, and not general vehicle access.

He continued: “I have contacted ESCC and Sussex Police about the ongoing issue, and am pleased to learn that efforts will now be made for signage to be improved. Sussex Police, however, have recently contacted me to say that they do occasionally patrol Cliffe High Street but it is not a priority given the constraints on their officer resources.”

Elsewhere, Cllr Kent and Cllr Stephen Catlin want to see changes in parking policy to encourage more retail trade in Lewes. These would include 30 minutes of free parking throughout the week and free parking on a Saturday.

Cllr Catlin said: “Retail is in decline and we need to be able to move swiftly to do what we can to help traders in the county town. I am in favour, and have been for some time, of free parking on Saturdays, and an half-hour free on School Hill. I do not understand why Lewes District Council has seemed so determined to gnaw away at the commercial heart of this once vibrant town.”

Cllr Kent is setting up an online petition calling for the initiatives to be implemented to encourage more residents, visitors and tourists to the town centre to boost the local economy. Hard copies will be available soon.