Work to repair the section of road outside Jeake’s House in Mermaid Street should be completed this week, according to the site foreman of Cappagh Browne, contractors to Southern Water. What initially had been a contained but dangerous obstacle to traffic as reported in Rye News became an ever enlarging hole, at least 8ft deep and 6ft wide, shored up by steel shuttering.
The cause of the sink hole was attributed to a broken sewer pipe, but nearly eight weeks elapsed before this received attention. According to Richard Martin of Jeake’s House, it was not registered by Southern Water as an emergency despite the danger to traffic and the unpleasant smells arising. “In my 37 years here at Jeake’s they have dug up the street no less than six times and each time the residents and visitors have suffered,” he said.
Mermaid Street has been claimed as one of the five most beautiful streets in the world, but it certainly ranks as one of the most picturesque in the UK. Much of its charm derives from the cobble-surfaced street. The re-laying of the cobbles requires a level of expertise however, in accordance with the specification agreed some years ago by Rye Conservation Society with the ESCC highways department. The society will seek to ensure that the appropriate standard is maintained, said chairman David Bookless.
Image Credits: Kenneth Bird .