Should be applauded

D Gaylard (Observer, January 3) should be applauded for calling on the Highways Agency to deal with the longstanding problem of flooding at the southern end of College Lane.

Many letters have raised this issue over many years, with little or no response from the powers that be.

How much damage is done to the commercial vitality of the city, or the inconvenience and danger, caused to residents by this moat, is difficult to calculate.

College Lane and Oaklands Park is proudly included as part of Chichester’s Conservation Area.

Sadly the reality is one of neglect, it is hardly an asset to be included in Chichester’s claim to be a tourist or cultural mecca.

College Lane on its western edge once had a fine flint wall.

Today the exposure to water from flood and vehicle spray is allowing water ingress which is beginning to threaten the very structure, individual flints are dropping out.

At Oakland House the wall collapsed some years ago, boarded-up and abandoned.

Whose is responsible for retaining this feature of the lane?

The very structure of the road surface is under attack, the road dressing has come away and potholes are everywhere.

The outwash of silt and stones from the university site does not help to avoid the visitor assuming College Lane is just a sadly neglected country lane.

The university/ rugby car park in the northeast corner of Oaklands Park closely resembles the bombed-out city car parks of my youth, muddy and pocked.

The city council owes everyone in Chichester an explanation for the degradation we see and have to put up with daily in our city, flooding, on street parking, road congestion , potholes, empty shops, litter etc.

An explanation of the underlying causes of the flooding in College Lane and plan of action to redress the problems in this small part of the conservation area would be a welcome start.

Perhaps the charges levied on developers could be used to tackle some of the problems in College Lane.

Ray Carter

College Lane

Chichester