Weather shuts part of Bognor Regis town centre

Firefighters assessing the damage in the High Street
Firefighters assessing the damage in the High Street
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A busy Bognor Regis town centre street was closed this afternoon (January 5).

Emergency services rushed to the High Street after a large piece of grey metal cladding became loose from the side of Reynolds furniture store.

West Sussex Fire and Rescue Service received a call reporting the incident about 12.45pm. Firefighters from the town’s fire station were on the scene within minutes and, after assessing the situation, they called for an aerial ladder from Worthing at 1.10pm.

Sussex Police quickly closed a section of the High Street stretching from its junction with York Road to just past the furniture store.

York Road was also closed and buses were diverted along Belmont Street.

The sections of road are expected to remain closed until later today.

It is believed the cladding was loosened by high winds experienced across the area over the last few days. Gusts in excess of 40mph were recorded in the town today.

Rail commuters also faced long delays as high winds continued to cause disruption.

Earlier this morning a tree fell on the line in the Billingshurst area which closed the Arun Valley Line, causing severe delays for Bognor and Barnham passengers. Replacement bus services were in operation.

For full report and pictures see the Bognor Regis Observer on Thursday, January 12.