Downton Abbey and Paddington actor Hugh Bonneville backs campaign to save 'vital' South Downs car park

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Downton Abbey and Paddington star Hugh Bonneville is backing a campaign to save a ‘vital’ South Downs car park from closure.

Kithurst Hill car park at Storrington was due to close at the end of the month because of a wrangle over its upkeep. But West Sussex County Council has since announced that its closure is to be deferred until January to allow time for more options to be explored to keep it open.

Meanwhile West Sussex actor Hugh Bonneville, famed for also starring in the film Notting Hill, has made public his support for a petition signed by thousands of local residents to keep the car park open. Many have described it as a ‘vital link to the South Downs’ for walkers and riders.

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Hugh, who is also a Deputy Lieutenant of West Sussex, contacted Arundel and South Downs MP Andrew Griffith to offer his full support to the campaign.:

Hugh Bonneville.Picture by Kate Shemilt C130331-1Hugh Bonneville.Picture by Kate Shemilt C130331-1
Hugh Bonneville.Picture by Kate Shemilt C130331-1

The actor said: “I’m pleased to hear that efforts are underway to prevent the closure of the car park at Kithurst Hill, Storrington. As a pilgrim of the South Downs Way I know how important access to the Downs are – mine are anyway – improves mental and physical well-being for local communities and visitors alike.”

Andrew Griffith added: “It’s brilliant to have Hugh Bonneville’s support as one of the county’s highest profile residents for the community- led campaign to keep Kithurst Hill car park open.

“With much local goodwill and community involvement, I am optimistic that the threat of closure will be overturned.”