Can Uckfield grab opportunity if there is a lull in housebuilding, asks Observer?

Our independent columnist says any chance to start Uckfield infrastructure improvements before housebuilding booms again should be grabbed; and hopes train operator Southern gets a rough ride from MPs.

Shares in the big housebuilders dropped like a stone first thing on Friday morning on the London Stock Exchange in the wake of the UK referendum result.

There’s a mantra, of course, that share prices can go up and down and you have to say the financial markets are prone to occasional dramatic shifts; particularly at times of uncertainty.

After trying to digest the referendum result, my attention turned to what all this might mean for Uckfield and the 1,000 home development at Ridgewood Farm.

Twelve months ago, those of us in the Dog and Duck saloon bar were convinced development was about to begin and that we would see the first houses in 2016.

However, there’s no sign and no detailed planning application.

Now there are national worries over housebuilders’ ability to fund developments.

Some would argue it is no bad thing if Ridgewood Farm is delayed, particularly bearing in mind the possibility of around a 150-homes extension to Harlands Farm and the possibility of 90 new properties along Eastbourne Road.

In an ideal world the delays would allow proper provision of schools places, doctors’ surgeries, transport provision and other infrastructure.

Truly Uckfield needs all these things BEFORE building starts.

Sadly, it doesn’t seem to work like that.

Houses are built and the infrastructure struggles to catch up, if it ever does.

If there is a breathing space, please, please can the local authorities get down to some serious planning for the future and put the footings in for the future infrastructure before the footings go in for the houses.

On the trains

Just when you think the Uckfield Line train service cannot get any worse – it does.

This week we have seen a whole day with no trains (strike), cancellations, delays, short-forms and dreadful overcrowding and then the weather gods knocked out services around Clapham Junction.

Uckfield Line commuters will watch with interest when Southern Railway managers appear before MPs of the Transport Select Committee. said Southern was set for a grilling; left to train users if would be a flame-grilling.

See also:

Plans to remove woodland and build new houses in Maresfield

Chapter Three about to begin for Uckfield boutique

J&S motorcycle clothing and accessories superstore opens in Uckfield

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