Resident disgruntled at sign outside house

Chris page with a new sign that has been erected in the car park adjacent to his home in Observatory View Hailsham. September 30th 2013 E40083P
Chris page with a new sign that has been erected in the car park adjacent to his home in Observatory View Hailsham. September 30th 2013 E40083P

A Hailsham resident has criticised Wealden District Council after they erected a sign near his house, despite his strong objections.

Chris Page, of Observatory View, received a letter from the council proposing the sign, which displays a map of the estate and community notices, and immediately made his feelings clear on the plan.

However, to his dismay, the sign was put up in the car park adjacent to his house not long after.

Mr Page said, “I got a letter telling me of their (the council’s) intent to get planning permission and I objected to it.

“Unsurprisingly, they got the permission and now there’s a massive sign up outside my house. I’ve rang them five or six times but they never call me back. I was on the phone to them just yesterday but I’m fed up of phoning them now.”

Mr Page, who works as a postman, is quick to stress his objections are not with the sign itself but with its location and its apparent priority over a series of other more pressing issues, including a cracked and unstable wall behind which the sign was placed.

He added, “It’s a lovely sign and a great idea but it shouldn’t be outside of my house. It should be at the end of the road on a big grass verge.

“The wall they’ve put it up against is falling down. I complained about that months ago but nothing’s been done and that’s a health and safety hazard. The road is absolutely falling apart too, there’s so many potholes, it’s awful.

“The money they spent on that sign should have been spent on essential issues first.”

The council have defended their decision to put up the sign and insists it will benefit the entire community.

A spokesperson for Wealden District Council said, “The map is one of three signs which has been approved through the normal public planning process.

“This recognised that the sign is sympathetic to the urban environment and would be visible but not be intrusive.

“The application included consultation with the Hailsham Town Council and East Sussex Highways, both of whom supported the proposal. It will be a useful benefit to residents and visitors to Town Farm.”

A disgruntled Mr Page is now thinking of his next steps and, with the sign highly unlikely to be dismantled, is looking at the possibility of receiving compensation.

He added, “I’ve been advised to get an estate agent to come and value my house and if they think the sign devalues it, which I think it will, I can apply for compensation, which I am going to do.

“I’ve asked somebody from the council to come down and see it and talk with me, but they haven’t.

“The sign has been put up in the exact spot where I used to park my car, so now I can’t park outside of my house.”