Major roadworks are scheduled to start today (January 11) in Uckfield town centre and are due to last until May.
UK Power Networks (UKPN) will be installing new underground 33kv high voltage electricity cables from the sub-station in Bell Lane to the 1,000 homes development at the former Ridgewood Farm.
The project is to ensure “safe and reliable power supplies”.
Multi-way signals will be in place to control traffic as excavation gets under way to install ducts, backfill and reinstatement.
The route will go via the High Street, New Town, to the Highlands roundabout and then Lewes Road to Ridgewood Place.
Ridgewood Farm homes development
At the same time, works are continuing on the A22 Uckfield by-pass to build a roundabout which will become the main access to the Ridgewood Farm homes development.
The route of the works, which was been chosen by UK Power Networks, supposed many townsfolk who wondered why the works could not have been routed via the wide verge in Bell Lane and along the by-pass verge to the housing development site.
Town councillor Cllr Chris Macve raised the issued at a town council meeting and was told by county councillor Claire Dowling:
“When we first heard about the electrical cable that was being laid, our hearts sank because it was going through the town.
“We asked why.
“The response that came back was that UKPN had investigated all the potential routes.”
She said the permit-issuing authority [East Sussex Highways] could not make a utility company do something it may not wish to do.
Waiting in the wings is further works on the A22 Uckfield by-pass, also associated with the Ridgewood Farm development, as this website revealed in September last year.
The entrances to the A22 roundabouts at Little Horsted and Copwood are to be widened.
These works were mandated as part of the granting of planning permission for the Ridgewood Farm development.
The works at the Copwood roundabout (at the junction with Bell Farm Road) must be completed prior to the occupation of the 100th house and the improvements at the Little Horsted roundabout prior to the occupation of the 450th house.