I WRITE in response to The Argus piece on October 7 on the move of the station taxi rank to the rear exit in Stroudley Road.

Six years ago a council-led project to investigate the moving of the taxi rank came up with the idea of moving the rank to Frederick Place in North Laine.

This was eventually rejected by Brighton and Hove City Council as it would have had a huge negative impact on the quality of life of North Laine residents.

The scheme which envisaged changing the traffic flow in several streets and included a proposal to use Trafalgar Lane as an access route for taxis would have added vehicle journeys through North Laine and increase noise and pollution.

>> Brighton Station taxi rank to be moved in November

Following a strong campaign by local residents which included a 1,000 plus petition the proposals were rejected by the council.

The move by GTR (Govia Thameslink Railway) to move the taxi rank has taken North Laine residents completely by surprise.

Neither residents nor the North Laine Community Association were consulted or informed by GTR of their intentions.

GTR maintains that it has spent a lot of time talking to people locally and that the move has the full agreement of residents and councillors and “makes most sense for passengers, residents, and the taxi trade”.

This is absolute nonsense. How can GTR make such assertions without talking to North Laine residents who will have to put up with increased traffic, noise and pollution. We hear a lot about how much communities and places are valued today. GTR have acted with no regard at all for the interests of this particular community.

This move is likely to add hundreds of extra taxi journeys going through North Laine.

Taxis travelling from the south are likely to use West Street, Queen’s Road, and North Road before turning into the narrow residential streets of North Laine.

Taxis travelling from the south east are likely to travel up Church Street and Spring Gardens as many do now, and then turn right in to North Road before going into our residential area.

Taxis taking customers to the seafront are likely to travel via Trafalgar Street turning right at the very narrow Blackman Street corner, or alternatively use Sydney Street which is officially closed to traffic during the day.

The junction at the corner of Blackman Street and Trafalgar Street will see taxis going to and from the Stroudley Street rank. This junction will cause utter chaos.

Have GTR bothered to model the impact of its decision, in which case can these studies be made publicly available?

Or have arrangements been made to ensure that there will be no extra taxi traffic through North Laine?

North Laine residents will be very keen to know the results of any traffic plans undertaken.

I call upon GTR to put their plans on hold while they hold a proper consultation and meanwhile conduct appropriate investigations into the likely outcome of their plans, remembering that it is always the unintended consequences of decisions taken by so-called experts which causes the greatest distress to local people.

PJ Crowhurst, North Laine resident