Work is under way to ensure that roads on the Fernley Park Estate in Ridgewood are adopted by East Sussex County Council in April next year.
Resident Owen Hoy wrote to Uckfield News about the moves after reading comments from our independent columnist Observer who, at the weekend, warned prospective owners of new homes to check on whether the roads around them are going to be adopted.
Observer’s comments came after it was learned that the developer of Sand Ridge, also in Ridgewood, had not asked the highways authority to take over the roads there.
Observer said this worked as long as the company existed but on Manor Park it was clear what could happen when public footpaths were left in private hands.
There the majority of paths and twittens on the estate are crumbling and some would argue hazardous for pedestrians. All the paths are the responsibility of house owners and it is difficult to get them to face their responsibilities because, it is understood, a path could have up to 100 owners.
Mr Hoy told Uckfield News: “Your ‘Independent Observer’ has a real good point here.
“This is why I am currently in negotiations with East Sussex County Council (ESCC), Nus Ghani MP, Chris Dowling, county councillor, and Linden Homes to ensure that Fernley Park, the development that I live on, is eventually adopted.
“Work originally commenced here on-site in 2009 I believe, and I moved here in December 2012 yet almost four years down the road this development has still not been adopted due to Linden Homes not adhering to on-going and outstanding maintenance issues.
“However, I now understand from ESCC that we are three months into a 12-month maintenance period which Linden Homes have to adhere to prior to ESCC finally adopting this development in April 2017. Fingers crossed.”
A spokesman for the county council said the information from Mr Hoy was correct. The 12-month maintenance period began in April 2016.
The spokesman added: “It is vital that any road the county council adopts is built and maintained to a high standard to ensure that unnecessary costs are not passed onto the taxpayer.
“Following an initial assessment of the construction of a road and the condition of associated equipment such as streetlights, the council enters into a 12-month maintenance period to final checks to be carried out before a road is adopted.”
Comment via the Uckfield News Facebook page from Chrissy Noble:
“Not all of FP will be adopted as some residents were informed at the beginning that their roads are private roads – and there are brass markers in the road to show where adopted and unadopted roads are. However, all homes on the estate pay a monthly levy to a management company, who maintain the grass, open spaces and front gardens, and deal with maintenance issues on the unadopted roads.”