February 12, 2013 by combehavendefenders
Press Information Note
Combe Haven Defenders 
12 February 2013
ROAD OPPONENTS DELIVER FELLED TREE TO EAST SUSSEX COUNTY COUNCIL MEETING
Local residents demand East Sussex County Council cut Hastings Link Road, not trees & services
11am, Tuesday 12 February, Lewes County Hall: Local opponents of the Bexhill-Hastings Link Road (BHLR) delivered a 3.2 meter section of one of the trees felled to make way for the Road to a Full Meeting of East Sussex County Council (ESCC) in Lewes this morning.
The tree, which was later removed from the building by security guards, was delivered following a theatrical performance outside the Hall, involving branches and foliage taken from other felled trees and a stand-in for Council leader Peter “The Chainsaw” Jones.
East Sussex County Council (ESCC) wants to spend up to £70 million of public money on the Road – which will devastate the Combe Haven valley – at the same time as it is making cuts to its budget of £70m .
Council leader Peter Jones has accused the Road’s opponents – who include Greenpeace, the RSPB, and the Campaign for the Protection of Rural England  – of being “a serious threat to our democracy”, yet when the ESCC cabinet met in December it agreed to increase its spending on the BHLR at a meeting from which the public was excluded, and the minutes withheld .
Gabriel Carlyle, a spokesperson for the Combe Haven Defenders, said: “Today, the trees of Combe Haven have come back to haunt East Sussex County Council, just as this environmentally-disastrous £100m Road will come back to haunt the Council unless it does an urgent rethink.”
Andrea Needham, a spokesperson for the Combe Haven Defenders said: “Yesterday, the Government announced a £16m package for the regeneration of seaside towns – much of it sustainable and community-based – which it expects to generate 4,000 jobs . This is more than four times total number of jobs that the Link Road will produce according to the Department for Transport (DfT), 40% of which are predicted to go to people from outside the area . Moreover, though work has already begun on the scheme with the felling of trees in the valley, the Council has yet to get final funding approval from the Central Government. We need to ditch this environmentally disastrous white-elephant project before it’s too late.”
 See https://combehavendefenders.wordpress.com/2013/01/11/1056/
 See https://combehavendefenders.wordpress.com/2013/01/27/green-and-conservation-groups-ceos-visit-camp-condemn-link-road-plans/
 According to the DfT, the BHLR will generate 900 new jobs (DfT: Final BHLR Assessment, March 2012.). It is predicted that 40% of these will go to people outside the area (http://www.persona.uk.com/bexhill/ESCC_docs/Witness-04/ESCC-04_02.pdf), leaving only 540 for local people.