‘Fury and frustration’ over invasion of lorries in Chailey lane

The entrance to the Gradwell Park building site
The entrance to the Gradwell Park building site

Construction work on a retirement village is causing “havoc, damage and frustration” in South Chailey.

Local resident Adam Walker said multiple deliveries by HGVs had effectively reduced Mill Lane to a single lane when they were stationary.

He said the vehicles were dropping stones, mud and other debris in the road. At least three shattered car windscreens had been reported.

The deliveries to the Gradwell Park development coincided with drop-off times at adjacent Chailey School and there had been numerous near misses, he said.

Mr Walker reported he had seen as many as 10 lorries at a time parked end to end and in-situ for up to 45 minutes.

“Local residents are infuriated at the lack of regard for their well-being,” said Mr Walker, who lives in Mill Lane. “It’s causing havoc and having an enormous impact on a rural village. The frustration is tangible.”

Luke Hollick, Director at Lawrence Baker, the main contractor for the Gradwell Park development, said: “Unfortunately, when the weather is bad it means that the roads around the site aren’t as clean as we would like them to be, but we do clean up any mess as soon as we are able to ensure that it doesn’t cause a problem for local residents.

“The roads are cleaned every day through a daily road cleaning service which usually comes by at 12 noon.

“We manage timed deliveries to the site but occasionally these timings fall out of sync when third parties do not follow our plan and there can be a few trucks waiting to get on site. We have designated parking in place which all our contractors are aware of and which we try to ensure they adhere to as best we can. The site operates a robust clean wheel policy, vehicle wheels are washed before they leave the site at both entrances, significantly reducing any transfer of mud onto the public highway.

“We have been in consultation with Sussex Highways, who visit the site regularly to ensure that we are compliant with the planning requirements.

“The heavy construction work is almost at an end at the site, which we expect to be completed within the next eight weeks.

“The entrances to the site have already been Tarmaced to eliminate the transfer of any mud and the remaining far section of road will also be Tarmaced at the end this month.”

Mr Hollick added: “Every precaution has been taken at the development site to ensure that disruption to the local community is kept to an absolute minimum. We have followed a strict site management plan, approved by the planners, in line with the planning granted.”