Tide Mills crossing is not dangerous!

Current level crossing at Tide Mills (photo by Google Maps Street View)
Current level crossing at Tide Mills (photo by Google Maps Street View)

May I also add my objection, through your letters page, to that of my neighbour Richard Beckett.

We who use TideMills on a regular basis (I walk my German Shepherd there every morning) were aware of this proposed, monstrously huge ‘foot-bridge’ for quite a while.

We understand from two train drivers who also exercise their dogs at Tide Mills, that Network Rail have been asked to pay for this proposed bridge, at a cost of some £1 million!

The crossing is not dangerous, if people use common sense, and ‘look and listen’ for oncoming trains.

The proposed foot bridge over the crossing, while in itself a good idea, becomes a ridiculous idea, and extremely expensive, when the proposed bridge is to accommodate disabled persons to visit Tide Mills.

The proposed bridge would have to be enormous to accommodate a gentle incline, and decline from one side of the railway, to the other, and would take up a huge amount of land, on both sides, to accommodate a wheelchair and occupant being pushed over it. Once achieved, they could then only access a few hundred yards to where there is a wooden bench, allowing them to be nearer the sea! There would be no access to the beach, as it is a pebble beach, and too steeply shelved, to accommodate any but the fit and able.

The pathway east towards Seaford or west to Newhaven would be inaccessible to wheelchairs because it is uneven, rutted, and covered in pebbles.

So, to spend this exorbitant amount of money to allow disabled access, would be good money ill spent, in my opinion.

The proposed amount would be better spent re-furbishing the pathway, with access from The Buckle end of Seaford (where there is ample safe car parking), and make good the footpath, with a 2-3ft brick wall on the sea side, to stop the pebbles from being thrown onto the renewed footpath, when we have rough weather. If this were continued along to the Newhaven end, it would allow disabled persons to have access to the seafront from The Buckle to Newhaven Port end. Perhaps Seaford and Newhaven could collaborate with ESCC with the cost.

Unfortunately a wheelchair would not be able to enjoy the Nature Reserve, because of its grassy terrain, and there is now no flat access to the Nature Reserve ....thanks to the work in progress for the new Port Access road at Newhaven Port end.

So, unless someone is fit enough to push a wheelchair, plus occupant, up a 4’ high grass slope, and down the other side, (without losing the occupant) then the same manoeuvre again, at the Tide Mills village end, there is a no access for any person in a wheelchair on the Nature Reserve.

So, why is it being proposed, to spend a huge amount of money, to travel just a couple of hundred yards?......no access to the beach, and no easy access to Newhaven, nor to Seaford from TideMills ....and just one bench to sit on to enjoy the views!

Please also note: This area is not exclusively in Newhaven, but is shared with Seaford. The proposed area for this enormous bridge is within the Seaford area, and immediately opposite Bishopstone, Seaford.

I rest my case!

Cllr Diane Hall

Newhaven Town Councillor