OBJECTORS to the Bexhill-Hastings Link Road will hold a protest camp and rally this weekend, as the £103 million project takes another step closer to starting.
This week the Government confirmed compulsory purchase orders to buy up the land for the BHLR.
The news was welcomed by Cllr Peter Jones, leader of East Sussex County Council (ESCC), although objectors are still seeking a judicial review of the scheme.
After an initial bid for a review was rejected, a second is due to be heard on October 5.
Cllr Jones said: “We are now eagerly awaiting the resolution of the legal appeal by the Hastings Alliance so we can get on and really make a positive difference for the area.”
He claimed the link road was “absolutely crucial” to the regeneration of Hastings and Bexhill, creating 1,200 - 2,000 new homes, business park space of 50,000 square metres and more than 3,000 new jobs, bringing economic benefits valued at £1 billion.
ESCC is still waiting final funding approval from the Department for Transport.
The five-mile stretch of road, to be built by 2016, will link the A269 at London Road in Bexhill with the B2092 Queensway in St Leonards, and run through the Combe Haven Valley area, which includes Crowhurst.
Anti-BHLR group, the Combe Haven Defenders, will hold a ‘Stop the Road’ event in the valley this weekend.
Guided walks to the camp site will depart tomorrow (Saturday) from Bexhill Station and Bulverhythe (Sheep Wash bridge) at 11am, and from Crowhurst Station at noon. Details of the camp’s location will be available on Saturday morning at www.combehavendefenders.org.uk.
The two-day programme of events will include workshops, children’s activities, professional stargazing and performances from local musicians.
Spokesperson Abby Nicol said: ‘We urge people to join us this weekend to see the amazing area that will be destroyed unless we take action to stop it, and to learn about practical ways in which we can all peacefully and effectively resist the construction of this road.”