Forty thousand die of particle pollution in this country every year, not to mention the cost to NHS of dementure, cancers, heart problems and strokes that are triggered by it,and actual road deaths.
Then there’s the problem of obesity and that impact on the health of the nation and cost to the NHS, and yet those who try to walk and cycle are given no help.
In fact we are forced onto dangerous packed roads with frustrated angry drivers.
I grew up in the foresters cottage at Crossbush just outside Arundel. At 14 in the 70s, I had a paper round, along that stretch of the A27.
At this time, people in The Netherlands were lying in the roads protesting after many child deaths on the new roads being constructed.
They demanded integrated, segregated cycle paths, and more than half the nation use the bike as their main form of transport today. Their cities and towns are an environmental pleasure.
Meanwhile the road to Arundel, down the hill and over the railway bridge is now terrifying, for me, a life long cyclist, with all A27 traffic forcing through it.
My father, local forester Paul Goodson cycled it up until a year ago, when at 90 we were so worried for his safety we discouraged him.
It is not even safe to walk the pavement over the bridge, it being so narrow due to crash barriers! Someone will die!
Any options? No! I travel to my father every week from Eastbourne via train to Ford, where I cycle through Arundel to Crossbush. I have tried the obvious alternative along the river bank to Warningcamp but this has been made impossible by a new kissing gate by the railway crossing and a hefty style the Arundel end.
Cattle have now been fenced in, so the bank no longer gets churned up, but it is impossible to manage for those with disabilities, families with push chairs walking or cycling.
So … there is just that road and all those fuming cars, lorries, vans and drivers. You will not change the car state-of-mind unless you build an alternative walking and cycling infrastructure.
A tiny bit of cycle path was put in from the Arundel roundabout to the station, river side recently.
It could have continued over the railway by the road bridge and along the 100 metres of field before the Burpham, Warningcamp turning.
Whoever thought of that doesn’t cycle or walk. The proposed leisure route along the river bank from Littlehamton is not for amenity and safety. Safety first!
For environmental reasons I have cycled all my life. To my auditions in London, to my glamorous first nights to my matinees and evening performances, to my yoga students, to my sons school with desired dog in the basket, to his first shows, to my friends weddings, anniversaries, funerals, to my dear mother in hospital, to her funeral behind her coffin to Burpham, to my dear dad soldiering on, and the trains are worse, the roads terrifying and nothing has been done.
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