B259 (Newhaven - Eastbourne)
|Location Map ( geo)|
|Distance:||11.8 miles (19 km)|
|Met:||A259, A275, B2109, B2108, A22|
|Now part of:||A259|
|Route outline (key)|
The B259 was originally allocated in the 1922 Road Lists to the road between Newhaven and Eastbourne via Seaford and East Dean, in a strange violation of the otherwise strictly followed numbering rules, which stipulated that such a number should exist in the Outer London area.
The original 2-zone draft list allocated the A271 from Worthing to Newhaven, the B2109 from Newhaven to Eastbourne, and the A254 from Eastbourne to Dover. Five numbers were missing in the draft (A205, A207, A226, A235, A239), being either new road projects or old roads bypassed by them, meaning the "A254" would eventually become the A259 in the final list.
During 1922, when the list of road numbers was being finalised, the Ministry of Transport notified each Regional Division of its proposed set of routes and asked them if there were any alterations that should be made. In September of that year, the Eastern & Home Counties Divisional Engineer informed the MOT that they thought the Worthing - Dover road was a recognised "Coast Road" and should receive a single number. However, this was not possible to do under the numbering rules because the route was a mix of Class I and Class II roads.
Eventually, a compromise was reached where the B259 was moved from its intended location near Dartford to take over the B2109; the remaining 3 digit B roads above this were all bumped up by one; and the A276 was moved from its proposed Worthing - Newhaven route and got allocated to a local route in Lewes instead (which would otherwise have received a 4 digit number). Notes in the relevant archive files discussing this read "Same number, different class, Worthing to Dover".
On 1st April, 1924, the B259 was one of the first roads to be upgraded to Class I status, resulting in the A259 being a continuous route along the south coast.