Storrington as polluted as London, according to report

Storrington has been named among the 32 worst polluted areas in the UK, according to a new report by the World Health Organisation.

There have long been concerns that the village has suffered high levels of pollution and various authorities have monitored and tested the levels.

Traffic in Storrington. Photo by Derek Martin

Traffic in Storrington. Photo by Derek Martin

Green air monitoring boxes have become a familiar sight in the village, as have the queues that frequently gridlock the village centre.

The problem has been widely condemned, but efforts to address the issue have so far failed and a low emission zone trial was abandoned.

In January 2017, Horsham District Council said it was ‘working to improve air pollution levels’ after the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) recorded ‘moderate’ to ‘high’ levels in Storrington.

South Downs MP Nick Herbert has previously called the pollution levels ‘completely unacceptable’ and called for rat-running through the village to be addressed. He has said an upgrade to the A27 would help take heavy traffic away from the villages.

And ward member on the district council Philip Circus has also called for action, saying people’s lives were being shortened because of traffic pollution in Storrington.

The latest revelations have been featured by the BBC in its analysis of the WHO report.

It said Storrington had a fine particle pollution level of 11 micrograms per cubic metre - the limit set by WHO is 10 micrograms.

London is also reported to have a pollution level of 11, with Brighton measured at 10.

The UK’s highest is Port Talbot, with a recorded pollution level of 18 micrograms.

The WHO report says fine air particle pollution is particularly bad as it penetrates deep into the lungs and cardiovascular system, causing diseases including stroke, heart disease, lung cancer and respiratory infections.

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For a map that shows the areas with ‘unsafe’ air pollution in the country as well as a video explaining what air pollution is click here.