Worthing and Lancing A27 needs separate solutions

I was delighted that the Herald put a feature about the A27 on last week’s front page with news from Jack Delbridge’s A27 bypass group, writes reader Rob Ferguson, of Hillbarn Lane. Worthing.

Traffic congestion
Traffic congestion

Jack is so right that if Highways England can spend about £450million on the Arundel bypass, then our bottleneck should be eligible for a similar sum in due course.

I entirely understand the logic of Jack’s group wanting a route north via Washington and Steyning. However, Highways England has costed it and it comes out at a figure it refuses to pay.

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The problem with the bottlenecks at the Offington Corner, Grove Lodge and Lyons Farm is that a lot of it is local traffic. A traffic survey showed only about a third of the traffic on the A27 is through traffic, although I can’t be exact about that figure.

In considering the A27 congestion issue, I think Highways England do not realise that much of the A27 traffic is going from the Lancing/Brighton side to or from the coastal towns west of Worthing, Angmering, Rustington and Littlehampton. If there was a clear route round north Broadwater, then I believe much of the traffic coming along Poulters Lane and Brighton Road would divert on to the alternative fast route using the Angmering bypass and even, unfortunately, Titnore Lane.

I would also take issue with the outdated assumption by Jack that the bypass needed is a Worthing and Lancing bypass. This was the original 1990s plan to build a continuous bypass from Crockhurst Hill through the Downs joining with the A27 at the Adur bridge.

Of course it is no longer legally possible to build a new road across a national park, as MP Tim Loughton reminded a few residents at a recent constituents’ Zoom meeting.

So, I would suggest that Worthing councillors need to work on what the Worthing area needs for an alternative new route and quite separately the Lancing councillors do the same.

And, talking of councillors, I believe there is an A27 Working Party. I would urgently ask the Herald to arrange an interview by the excellent James Butler with the chairman or a member of that working party to give us an idea of their strategy for the way out of the current A27 impasse.