Osborne lights touchpaper for national resistance to Bexhill-Hastings Link Road with £57m funding decision

April 3, 2013 by combehavendefenders

2nd battle of hastingsPress Information Note
Combe Haven Defenders [1]
3 April 2013

Public must be allowed to see what Transport Department recommended before it was leant on by Treasury say campaigners

George Osborne has lit the touchpaper for the peaceful resistance against the Bexhill-Hastings Link Road (BHLR) to go national with today’s announcement of full and final approval of £57m in central goverment funding for the project [2], campaigners have said today.

stop_osbourne_logo_v1The BHLR is the ‘first and the worst’ of over 190 new road projects that the Government, big business & local councils are pushing throughout England and Wales [3]. The peaceful protests against the Road– which have been running since 14 December, with 28 arrests – have already received national attention [4], and campaigners have long been gathering pledges nationally for people to join the peaceful resistance when work on the project starts [5].

Scores of anti-road campaigners will be heading to London next Monday (8 April) for a peaceful two-day search of the Department for Transport (DfT) for its secret recommendations about the £100m BHLR [6]. The DfT has itself warned of the “significant” risk of the project yielding low value for money [7].

Andrea Needham, a spokesperson for the Combe Haven Defenders [1] – one of several groups who have been involved in opposing the scheme – said: “By forcing the DfT to give £57m of taxpayers’ money to fund this environmental disaster George Osborne has lit the touchpaper for national peaceful resistance to the Bexhill-Hastings Link Road. Now more than ever we need to know what the DfT recommended about whether or not to fund the project before it was leaned on by the Treasury. Next week’s Operation Dislosure “document search” [8] at the DfT is only the beginning of a new phase of peaceful resistance to the Road.”

[1] http://www.combehavendefenders.org.uk
[2] https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/bexhill-hastings-link-road-full-approval-letter
[3] https://combehavendefenders.wordpress.com/2012/10/30/stop-the-zombie-roads-hastings-halloween-action-on-30-october/
[4] https://combehavendefenders.wordpress.com/recent-media-coverage/
[5] https://combehavendefenders.wordpress.com/pledge/
[6] The searchers will attempt to enter the Department to peacefully search for, copy and distribute the recommendations, which are being withheld from the public. If prevented from entering they intend to form a  queue outside the DfT’s front door from 8am – 5pm on Monday 8 April and Tuesday 9 April. For more info see http://www.operationdisclosure.wordpress.com
[7] See http://tinyurl.com/significantrisk
[8] http://www.operationdisclosure.wordpress.com

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