New England Greenway – Still Going Nowhere?

The Greenway path runs from Jurys Inn along to New England Road. It will eventually link all the way to Brighton Station.

The Greenway path, planned to run from the New England railway bridges to Brighton Station, is green, pleasant, and still blocked off at the northern end. We asked if we could have a look at it, and the Council gave the PCA a tour.

We found an attractive and thoughtfully designed passage running between the pillars that used to support the old engine works. With vines planted along the walls, giant sculptures of tools on the pillars recalling the site’s industrial past, places to sit among an elegant mixture of wild and garden plants, it has a natural and human quality that contrasts with much of the rest of the New England Quarter.

So why isn’t it open? The planting was ready months ago – last year we were told we could expect to be able to use it in late summer or autumn. But the Council has not yet managed to reach agreement with Network Rail, which owns the land at the northern end.

Over the past week new fences and some formidable spikes have gone up between the railway bridges, which may be a sign that things are moving at last. But meanwhile the Council is taking advice from its lawyers, and considering court action against Network Rail.

More photos can be seen on our Facebook page.

This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to New England Greenway – Still Going Nowhere?

  1. Peter Golton says:

    The PCA was given an update today by a spokesperson for
    Brighton & Hove City Council:

    “The council has been working in partnership for two years with landowners and developers of the New England Quarter to create the Northern Greenway, which forms part of the Brighton Station site development.

    “The Greenway is designed to be an attractive green space in the middle of an urban development and was approved as part of the overall Masterplan for the site. It is intended to provide an area of ecological and biodiversity value, and an amenity space through the 8.9ha redevelopment site, which local residents and visitors will be able to enjoy.

    “The council has worked closely with the developers of the New England Quarter to plant up the Greenway to create an oasis with places to sit and a mixture of wild plants, grasses and shrubs. The council has also co-ordinated the sculpture works on the walkway.

    “It is disappointing for residents that the opening of the Greenway has been delayed. This is because Network Rail, a key landowner, has formally to agree access across part of its land, including the Grade II listed bridge crossing New England Road, for the public to use the Greenway. The council is involved in ongoing negotiations with Network Rail in order to obtain the necessary licence and we are hopeful that it will be achieved in the next few weeks without the need to take legal action.”

  2. jer16 says:

    Thank you, Peter, for explaining why the rest of the Greenway is still closed. Please do let us know if we can do anything to help (such as writing to someone in Network Rail). Elizabeth

  3. petergolton says:

    Thanks Elizabeth – the Argus picked up the story and one of its reporters, Rebecca Evans, was going to investigate. I haven’t seen anything yet!

  4. Elizabeth says:

    Oh well, we can wait a bit longer then I suppose … Elizabeth

  5. petergolton says:

    Conservation area on track
    The Argus, Monday , Oct 25, 2010

    A conservation area that runs through Brighton is due to open – a year after residents were told it would be.

    The Northern Greenway, which runs from the New England railway bridge to Brighton Station, is a public right of way but has been blocked off at the northern end.
    The council said the lan is designed to be an “attractive green space” in the middle of the city and was approved as part of the New England Quarter masterplan.

    The two sides have been negotiating over the public access to the land including the Grade II listed bridge across New England Road.

    A council spokesman said: “We’re still tying upthe legal ends with Network Rail, finalising a licence whereby they grant the public access across their bridge and land.”

    A spokesman for Network Rail said: ” We have been working with Brighton and Hove City Council and other parties in relation to the Northern Greenway scheme. We are satisfied all outstanding issues are being resolved and we are now in a position to move forward.”

    A date for the opening of the Northern Greenway has not yet been released.

  6. marekkohn says:

    Word is that it should be open in the next week or two!

  7. marekkohn says:

    Latest word is that the Council and Network Rail finally signed their agreement last week.

  8. RossH says:

    When I 1st heard about this, the plan was to take the path all the way to Dyke Road Drive where it meets up with Lovers Walk so the cycle route out of town taking cyclists away from traffic would be opened! Do we know if this is Phase One or if the rest of the route got abandoned?

  9. marekkohn says:

    I think it got abandoned. Took several years to get Network Rail to agree to that much, even though they signed off on the plan in the first place.

  10. Elizabeth says:

    Just in case no-one’s noticed … the Greenway is now open. You can climb up to it from New England Road using the steps on the north side between the bridges and it takes you past wild flowers – mostly native but also Buddleia – towards the station. Houses in Dyke Road Drive are now less than 15 minutes from the station!

Leave a Reply