I write to respond to the residents of Old Orchard Road and Arlington Road regarding the licensed Hackney Taxis.
Whilst the behaviour of some of the drivers is totally unacceptable with their loud talking etc, the residents of that area should be made aware of some facts.
This problem of over crowding at that rank has not been caused by the drivers themselves, this situation has been brewing up for many years.
It has been caused by East Sussex County Council (ESCC) and the Lib Dem run council of this town, Old Orchard Road resident Alex Hough, seems to have forgotten she was once a liberal Democrat councillor. For it was in the year of 2009 (March 9) that the Lib Dem controlled council at that time decided to delimit the Hackney Carriage trade.
Before that date there was a limit on the number of taxis in Eastbourne, since then there has been no limit, which, obviously means more taxis trying to use the same amount of space prior to 2009.
At least five of those councillors who stuck their hands up for delimitation are now nowhere to be seen.
At that meeting (9th March 09) drivers raised concerns about lack of rank space at that present time, notwithstanding more taxis coming into the trade would create even more problems. We were told ESCC would not be creating any more rank space for that area.
So, those drivers who spoke were not listened to; unfortunately we have been proved right at the expense of the residents of that area who now have to suffer the consequences from decisions made in 2009.
ESCC have proved over recent months that they can rearrange and add parking bays across the town if they choose to do so, examples being police bays in Old Orchard Road, coach bays in Blackwater Road and College Road, disabled and loading bays in more areas plus bus stops.
However, it seems that they are not quite as generous when it comes to supplying extra spaces or moving taxis to a different area. I, myself, have written to ESCC about 18 months ago suggesting a more commercial area we could move to rather than the residential area we are in at the present time.
The area I’ve suggested would hold 16 taxis, double the amount of space we have at this present time, to date I haven’t even had an acknowledgement of my letter.
So, this all doesn’t bode well for the residents of Old Orchard Road and Arlington Road. Until such time ESCC stop burying their heads in the sand this problem will continue, for it is they who have masterminded it.
Hackney carriage proprietor,