Sites in Rye in deplorable state say campaign group

Boarding, Cinque Ports Street, Rye. 30/3/11'Old garage site. ENGSNL00120110330150056
Boarding, Cinque Ports Street, Rye. 30/3/11'Old garage site. ENGSNL00120110330150056

Historic sites in Rye are being neglected and allowed to go to ruin claim the Campaign for a Democratic Rye.

Chairman Alan Bolden has presented a long list to Rye Town Council outlining the poor condition of areas of the town including the cemetery, the Landgate Arch, the lookouts and Rock Channel Quay.

Speaking to the Observer Alan said: “Sites of great importance are in a deplorable state.

“The cemetery is in as bad a state as I have never seen it. It has not been touched by anyone since the controversial toppling of memorial stones.

“New graves are cut then left in a deplorable state and weeds proliferate.

“The seven piece illumination, set in the pavement at Landgate Arch has not worked since the day it was installed. The clock at the Arch is broken and there is no access.

“All three of the lookouts at Hilder’s Cliff, Gungardens and Watchbell Street now suffer from ever taller and thicker vegetation to the point that our glorious views are increasingly obscured.

“A little way down Traders Passage is a massive tree and broken brickwork hanging apparently in space with houses immediately below.

“From the corner of The Grove, there never has been a pavement or path along that part of Love lane to the gateway into Rye College. Crowds of young people have to walk in the roadway there. Are we just going to wait for an accident?

“The track running from near the entrance to Rock Channel Quay, alongside the allotments to the boatyard is totally neglected, overhung with greenery, and bears no resemblance to a safe public pathway.

“This indifference gives no satisfaction or pride or pleasure to the people of Rye or to our thousands of visitors.”

Responding to the claims, Rye councillor Granville Bantick said: “I have to re-declare a personal interest as a committee member of the CDR.

“I fully support Mr Bolden’s letter of complaint. It is deplorable that we have a situation in Rye where so much of the town is being neglected by those in local government

“The areas that are listed have surely been observed but never acted on.

“The state of the cemetery was reported on by a Rye resident in the Rye Observer in April when due to fallen trees she was not able to visit her son’s grave.

“Of course some of this debris may have been removed, but the general state of the cemetery has changed little since the desecration of 122 memorial stones some years ago.

“In drawing up the draft Corporate Plan the district council was reported as having said it would take into account the views of residents who have identified a number of priorities including a “clean and tidy town centre”.

“I wonder whether it is still not too late for Rye Town Council to place before Rother District Council the particular priorities that Mr Bolden has listed?