Lockdown’s mixed messages


As cold temperatures linger, despite the sun, last Easter weekend was not as crowded with visitors as it might have been, though some were around (often without masks), and many local residents are clearly looking forward to next Monday, April 12, when non-essential shops, self contained holiday accommodation, hospitality venues with outside space, and leisure centres can re-open as the next step in moving out of the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown.

But the messages are mixed. The Chamber of Commerce wants to see business  flourishing, but the government’s message is still to take care, and Rye’s Town Hall is similarly cautious.

Drug busts and house prices

And messages about Rye and the surrounding area are mixed too as, just before the long Easter weekend kicked off, Sussex Police announced a number of drug raids on homes in Rye, Rye Harbour and Hastings. The police said their warrants were issued to “disrupt the supply of drugs in Rye” after information had been received about a “crime group distributing drugs in the area”.

Over the weekend however the Sunday Times had a feature on how house prices were rising in Rye, but more particularly in Camber (apparently to an average price of around £371,000), as “creatives” from London were attracted to what the area had to offer. But drugs were not mentioned.

Neither was poverty, and the Food Bank in Rye continues to meet a heavy demand in a coastal/rural area with a lot of poverty reflected in local statistics – but possibly not in affordable house prices.

Go away versus stay at home

Covid-19, though, is still topic of the month as we pass the anniversary of the start of lockdown, and huge question marks still hang over our ability to take a foreign holiday and, if we do, what might be the additional “Covid costs”?.

This might mean more “staycationers” flocking to Camber and Rye, but will they be able to get the food they want? An  Opinion article suggests they may not because of planning delays – something else the Sunday Times forgot to mention.

But perhaps Rother District Council has a strategic plan for that – like their one for Camber’s traffic – also not mentioned in the Sunday Times article.



Image Credits: kt bruce .

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