People power keeps village looking good


If you want a job done, do it yourself.

That was the moral of the story behind a scheme to beautify a major gateway into Heathfield.

After watching their grass verges disappear into a quagmire of mud, families in Sheepsetting Lane set up a residents’ association to deal with the problem of selfish parking, speeding and anti-social late-night noise at the village’s community centre.

Last weekend they ticked off the first problem on their list. The group obtained consent from East Sussex County Council’s highways teams to place posts and warning signs on the verges. They were given detailed maps of where the posts could go and told that they can install more if the first batch failed to deter parking. To keep costs down, association member and builder Steve Welfare obtained the posts, applied coats of protective treatment and together with association chairman Mel Butcher and vice chair Pam Lineham, mustered a team of residents to dig holes and place the posts in position. An ESCC map specified size and location. From 9.30am the team demonstrated muscle power they didn’t know they had and by lunchtime all posts were in position.

Pam Lineham said: “Sheepsetting Lane is an attractive route into the village but for years we’ve been trying to deter people from wrecking our verges. After a wet winter the ruts used to be a foot or more deep and mud spread across the road.” Mel Butcher added: “We are delighted with the result. Keeping the lane looking good benefits everybody and we are sure people will now park courteously. Thank you to those who do.”

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