After months in which, with other organizations, the Islander, HIRA, HI Horticultural Society, Facebook campaigning, notices (by Hants. County Council we were told) at the Tip itself, an open meeting at the Shades Pub all proclaimed the importance of preserving Hayling’s Amenity Tip, it is astonishing that there are still Islanders who have either not heard that our Tip could be closed or who actually believe that it will make no difference to the Island. Fundamentally, closure will surely cause: far greater traffic congestion with potentially life-threatening consequences on our single access road relied upon by commuters, day trippers and emergency services alike as tip users join the queues to leave Hayling; those who decide that it’s easier – and cheaper - to dump their sizeable domestic clear-outs on grass verges, farmers’ fields or beach roads will add to everyone’s local taxes for the inevitable fly- tipping clean ups; the good citizens who take the trouble to take their over- size domestic rubbish to a tip would face the cost in time and fuel not to mention lengthy queues visiting Havant’s nearest Tip. It has been reported that Havant people have come to Hayling’s Tip because their own queues are already too long.
HIRA continues to urge all its members to at least write in as well as sign petitions because we are all realizing that individual actions plus petitioning are essential if we are to make Winchester understand the gravity of our situation as an island with only one road for all access. Please make your voice heard by writing your reasons to the office responsible for receipt of all views: Mr. Humby, Environment and Transport Executive Member, Hampshire County Council, The Castle, Winchester SO23 8UJ. There is a petition and informative leaflets at The Terracotta Pot Shop on Eastoke Corner, and we understand also at HI Community Centre, Hayling Hardware and Heidi’s. Importantly we need people to write in as well as sign a petition. Hants. County Council’s online questionnaire can also be printed off and sent in to the above address, or you can call 0300 555 1389 and request a paper copy to complete and return by post. HIRA is currently working with Councillors Clare Satchwell and Andy Lenaghan by contributing to a banner which we hope will be suitably positioned before the end of April. We’ve also had 5000 leaflets printed so please contact us (details below) if you can distribute any; we all need to keep track of the roads leafleted.
Another invaluable and irreplaceable Hayling site is our Billy Trail which is desperately in need of serious attention. An increasing number of Islanders and mainlanders alike are discovering what a brilliant job that Peter Drury (a member of Hayling’s Best), in partnership with Hampshire CC, Havant BC and
others, has achieved at the northern end. Peter addressed our Committee, as well as Hayling’s Best, recently and clearly explained how the partnership had planned and secured funding (including a Heritage Lottery Fund grant) to improve access to part of the Hayling Billy Trail for all users, including the disabled, restore the signal and to provide interpretation panels describing the history of the area as well as the wildlife present. He explained how current funding has allowed rebuilding of the Hayling Billy Trail from the bridge car park to the Oyster bed steps on the railway alignment. Funding to extend this to the car park behind the Esso Garage and also to connect the Hayling Billy Trail to the Oyster bed site is being sought by the partnership. When this is completed, it will provide a wonderful amenity that permits anyone, including the disabled, to visit, sit and enjoy the sanctuaries that are part of Langstone Harbour too. If you haven’t been there already, it’s testimony to what people working together can achieve. Peter has set up a website for us all to discover and contribute to the work in progress that is Hayling’s Billy Trail: www.haylingbillyheritage.org Anyone who doubts what can be achieved might wish to learn from Peter about how the northern end was transformed from a muddy quagmire.
It is always encouraging to hear about communities coming together to celebrate, especially when it is for an occasion that brings with it a highly emotional history and the courage of so many at the time. The Queen’s Birthday this year reminds us not only of the best in family life as we all celebrate birthdays, but also the resilience and quiet strength that Queen Elizabeth II, her sister and parents all demonstrated by remaining in blitzed London and doing what they could to maintain the nation’s morale at a terrible time. Whilst HICCA and others held celebration parties in April, there are still more planned around the island, so we hope that you’ll all join in and share the good times!
Finally, HIRA would like to take this opportunity to express the appreciation of all our members who either knew or have benefitted from Lois Neale’s work as one of our Committee members during her many years with HIRA. We would also like to convey our condolences to her family and let them know that she is fondly remembered.
Please join or contact us either by email on firstname.lastname@example.org or by leaving a written message at any of the offices at: The Terracotta Pot Shop, Eastoke; Morris Dibben Mengham; The Library Elm Grove; Hayling Island Community Centre (HICCA) West Town.