Mini-roundabout might solve Lewes crossroad snag

As a motorist, pedestrian and occasional cyclist living in Mill Road I am a frequent user of the junction at the bottom of my road - or to be more accurate, the crossroads.

The new cycle/footpath from Ringmer has instigated amendments to the existing pedestrian crossing to the north of the crossroads, although quite which cyclists will use it I cannot fathom - it does not seem to follow a logical route in any direction.

That aside, I am fearful that the repainting of the road markings will not serve any positive purpose and is most definitely not the solution to the inherent problem of this crossroads. As a four entry point, it is crying out for a mini roundabout arrangement. Lewes has many examples where a straightforward T junction seems to warrant a mini roundabout, Friars Walk, The Swan, The King’s Head among them, but seemingly not here despite the additional road served.

This crossroads is a point where a principal trunk road into and out of the town meets Church Lane, a bus route serving a significant part of the Malling estate and the police HQ and is an established alternative route to the town centre and supermarkets. This busy road directly opposes the access and egress of residents of Mill Road and The Lynchets, not forgetting the number of walkers who park at the head of Mill Road to access the South Downs. School parents park in both roads twice a day as close to the crossroads as they can manage.

If any studies have been carried out of this crossroads, they cannot have failed to notice that the central bay is trying to serve as a right turn facility for four roads in a width insufficient to cater for more than one vehicle with any degree of safety. When two vehicles attempt to use this space, it is a disordered scrap for priority, breeding impatience and confusion and it is a serious accident waiting to happen, beyond the occasional coming together I have already witnessed.

A mini roundabout would sort the issue of priority at a stroke and slow down the speed of traffic entering and leaving the town who already blatantly ignore the 30mph limit. It is a shame that the Highways Authority have not even seen fit to reply to my letter to them, but maybe if enough people agree with me, some clear thinking, and funding, might be focussed on an existing problem of real stature rather than a pot of yellow paint that will change nothing.

Neil Way