Hindhead Tunnel Opens Today Making Portsmouth & Solent (DI Andy Horton country) Easily Accessible From London

The South Coast  where my marine mystery crime novels, featuring the rugged and flawed DI Andy Horton are set, has just become hugely more accessible from London with the opening of the Hindhead Tunnel today to south bound traffic and to north bound traffic in a few days time.  It is set to dramatically reduce driving times from London to the south coast - making this vibrant, historic and beautiful coast, as well as that on the Isle of Wight, more accessible than ever before.

The 1.2 mile Hindhead Tunnel on the A3 completes the dual carriageway link between London and Portsmouth, enabling drivers to finally by-pass a notorious congestion spot outside the village of Hindhead in Surrey. It runs under the Devil’s Punch Bowl, a nationally-recognised Site of Special Scientific Interest, and forms part of a new four-mile dual carriageway road linking existing dual carriageway to the north and south of the village.

Among the locations now more easily accessible from London are:

• Portsmouth's Waterfront City, home to Portsmouth Historic Dockyard, with Nelson’s flagship HMS Victory and the 170-metre Spinnaker Tower with its 360-degree views of the city, sea and the River Solent at Gunwharf Quays ( named Oyster Quays in the Horton novels).

• Across Portsmouth Harbour is the town of Gosport and Lee-on-the-Solent, (featured in the next DI Horton crime novel A Killing Coast) and the marinas at Gosport, featured in Deadly Waters and where the Police Launch in my crime novels is situated with Sergeant Elkins and PC Ripley on board.

• Hayling Island - reached by a single-track bridge with its wonderful Hayling Island Coastal Path ( featured in Footsteps on the Shore) and the birthplace of windsurfing. The national Windsurfing Festival takes place on Hayling 3 - 4 September 2011. Now that's another idea for a Horton crime novel

• The Isle of Wight - with its award-winning beaches and beautiful countryside. This is where I set my thriller In For The Kill and the Horton novel Blood on the Sand is also set there.

You can travel across to the Island on the Wightlink Car ferry or by Hovercraft

'This part of South East England has some of the region’s most compelling heritage, but it’s also great for families and there are fantastic festivals to suit all tastes. We hope the new improved journey will encourage more visitors from the London area,”commented Tourism South East’s Head of Marketing, Karen Roebuck.

I'll echo that, and I hope that many more people will be able to join us at the exciting CSI Portsmouth event on 5 November where crime fact meets crime fiction, with crime authors (including me) and crime experts. More on this to follow in August.


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