Hagley Gap yearns for good roads

November 30, 2016
Gladstone Taylor/ Photographer Motorcycles are a popular mode of transport between Hagley Gap, Penlyne Castle and the surrounding environs as a result of the deplorable road conditions.
Gladstone Taylor/ Photographer Deplorable road network condtions were among the main issues discussed by residents in the Cedar Valley Division of St Thomas when they voted on Monday.
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Local Government elections have come and gone in the hills overlooking Hagley Gap, St Thomas, but the problems remain.

The roadways are poor, almost to the point of being non-existent. And if there was one Christmas wish that residents would want granted, it would be for better infrastructure.

A resident in the Hagley Gap community told THE STAR that his biggest problem is the roads in the community.

"The road dem bad, dem terrible. When rain fall, nothing can't drive pan di road dem. These roads need special attention. The heavy rains weh fall weh day, nothing couldn't cross the river down deh, so and the White River worse. People couldn't get fi go market," the resident said.

Most of the roads that run through the coffee-producing communities are rugged and unpaved. The long, windy and dusty road stretches from Kingston, on the western side, through Mavis Bank and Mount Charles and works it way to the world famous Blue Mountain Peak. The equally rugged roadway runs east from Hagley Gap and connects communities like Cedar Valley, Llandewey, Yallahs and Seaforth.

transport voters

As is commonplace in elections, candidates seeking votes have to rely on motorists to transport voters to polling stations. In Hagley Gap, the options were either motorcycles and four-wheel drive vehicles, such as Land Rover jeeps. This is no place for cars.

Micheal Drysdale was one transporter in Penlyne and Minto polling stations.

"I do this every time there is an election - local government or general election," said Drysdale, who, like many residents, yearn for the day when the cool St Thomas hills will be blessed with good roads.

The majority of voters returned the People's National Party's Marsha Francis as councillor. She will now serve a second term in the parish council.

Hagley Gap falls in the constituency of Western St Thomas, which has been represented by the Jamaica Labour Party's James Robertson since 2002.

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