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Crawley’s historic High Street changed to improve safety



Changes to the Historic High Street will improve pedestrian safety and prevent further damage to street furniture and fixtures.

Funded by Crawley Borough Council in partnership with West Sussex County Council, works are currently taking place in the Historic High Street to secure the pedestrianised area from vehicles and prevent illegal parking.

The High Street is a Restricted Parking Zone from the entrance of Pegler Way to just north of its junction at Cross Keys and any vehicle not correctly parked in a bay is liable for a Penalty Charge Notice.

In the past it has been difficult to enforce these restrictions during evenings and weekends. The continued excessive use of cars in this area puts pedestrian safety at risk, damages street infrastructure, affects local businesses and the local environment negatively.

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Owing to the Historic High Street’s status as a conservation area great care has been taken with the designs of new street furniture to ensure the proposed installations are in keeping with the surrounding area. The scheme includes:

•         Installation of a small span of new fencing and fixed/lockable bollards

•         Repairs and repainting of damaged electrical posts

•         Relocation of seating for events and to protect a potential vehicle access point

•         Repainting of other bollards in this area.

Long-term improvements are being considered to repair or replace damage caused by vehicles in this area, including tactile paving slabs designed to help people with visual impairments and the base of the ‘Golden Tree’ artwork.

Parking in the Historic High Street is only permitted in designated bays. However, other car parks are available in the area and in some cases are free (or very inexpensive) in the evenings including:

  • NCP Car Park at Cross Keys (near the entrance to Church Walk)
  • Cross Keys House car park
  • RCP Broadway surface car park
  • Orchard Street multi-storey and surface car park.

Councillor Peter Smith, Cabinet Member for Economic Development, said:

“The Historic High Street is one of the town centre’s greatest assets and we want to ensure that we protect both its historical value and value as a leisure space.”

Councillor Peter Lamb, Leader of the Council, said:

“The council is committed to preserving our Historic High Street as an important public space. As the recent damage to the Golden Tree sculpture has highlighted, uncontrolled vehicle movements in this area pose a risk to both pedestrians and property.” 

Claire Oak, Co-Chair of the Historic High Street Business Forum and Facilitator of the Circles Network, said:

“I welcome the changes being made and the great thought that’s been put into our Historic High Street. It’s a place brimming with character and stories of old.

“It’s my desire to see our Historic High Street showcase our diverse, vibrant culture and be a place of great interest, full of creativity.” 

Nicki Cheek, Co-Chair of the Historic High Street Business Forum and landlady of The Brewery Shades, said:

“Parking and moving vehicles blight the Historic High Street so these improvements will make this historic area much safer and more family-friendly.” 

The works are due to finish by 3 November. For more information about parking in the town centre, visit

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Average families water & waste bill in Crawley to fall by almost £50 this year



Southern Water Bill

The dramatic drop in the bill from Southern Water comes mainly as a result of a fall in price for the wasterwater element of the bills.

The drop of an average 11.2 per cent for 2020-21 is for the combined bill of water and wasterwater treatment services.

A typical combined bill for a domestic customer is expected to be £391 compared with an average charge of £440 last year – meaning a day’s services will cost only £1.07 a day – less than most bus fares. The cost is 13p a day or £49 a year less than last year.

The water element of bills is almost flat – the expected average is £159 compared with £156 in 2019-20. Wastewater bills will fall by an average £52 including a rebate of around £20 attributable to the company’s final settlement with Ofwat.

The big drop in bills comes at the start of a sustained fall in combined bills. Between 2020 and 2025 bills will fall by 18.4 per cent (adjusted for inflation). By 2025 the average household bill for water and wastewater will be just £343 a year. Water bills will fall 8 per cent during that time while wastewater bills will fall 24 per cent.

Southerwater say this is the start of a new ear with Ian McAulay, Southern Water chief executive adding:

“Water is essential to every aspect of our lives but it is under increasing pressure from population growth and climate change. So water companies have got to work even harder to face these challenges and keep it flowing far into the future whilst delivering the services our customers want and deserve.

Our customers have said they want us to do more to protect the environment and increase biodiversity, that’s why over the next 5 years our ‘Water for Life’ business plan will invest £4 billion into our region, generating jobs and protecting the environment whilst ensuring we keep bills affordable and support those in need.”

Southern Water has currently three key investments being worked on which include a £27.5 million five year phase of the Bathing Water Enhancement Programme which they say has helped to raise 58 out of the region’s 83 bathing waters to the “Excellent” standard.

They are also commissioning £100 million investment in rebuilding the Woolston wastewater treatment works and constructing a £15 million Chichester pipeline to support growth in the region.

Rachel Ryan-Crisp, Southern Water’s Vulnerability Lead, says:

“There are many people out there that don’t even know that these services exist and for an array of reasons whether they struggle to pay or require more support from their supplier. We can assist and offer extra care to a range of people such as those living with long-term illness, disability, the elderly and even new parent or parents with young children. Help us to help you by getting in touch for advice or by spreading the word to friends and family who could benefit.”

More details about our tariff schemes can be found here

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