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Bonkers Blog November 2014

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26 November (Part 2) - Halt! Who goes there? Nobody

Yesterday a message said…

You may not be aware of yet another traffic light permit issued by the council! It’s for National Power for a set of lights at the junction of Long Lane and Brampton Road.

I’ve just endured an extra 20 minutes on the bus trip from Bexleyheath to ‘North Borough’ due to these lights and then the bus stop at Abbey Wood station was blocked with contractors vans etc. To top it all the cones were breeding by the Sainsbury’s site. A lane was closed.

I went to take a look but the B11 wasn’t stopping anywhere near the site of the chaos. All stops closed and as it was raining I didn’t go back for a closer look.

Today I did and sure enough the area was still badly congested due to a pipe lying in a rather neat hole. Why does a job like that have to be stretched out to last a week?

Crossrail Crossrail Crossrail Crossrail

The southbound queue stretched half way to Woolwich Road but northbound things weren’t so bad. And the bus stop no longer had a closed sign on it.

VansThe complaint about contractors blocking the bus stop, whilst true, may be a little unkind. Yesterday I saw three of their vehicles (two vans and a digger) parked in the Abbey Wood station bus layby but they were doing an essential job which should be finished soon. I was on a bus at the time and my camera was packed away, however earlier in the day I had almost ‘caught’ two. (See Photo.)

There will be times when there will be no easy way of getting essential work done. It will be interesting to see how Crossrail proposes to deliver all the materials for the new station. By crane from below I hope and not low loaders at the bus stop.

Then another message arrived…

Crossrail Bexley council must have had a meeting on how to ensure increased footfall in Bexleyheath in the run up to Christmas.

Answer? Road works in Townley Road. 45 minutes to get through this morning coming from Sidcup. The Broadway shops won't see me again.

Broadway’s loss. Bluewater’s gain.

As if that wasn’t enough someone from Sidcup who has put up with nearly a year of road works is not too happy about yet more.
The cones that held up the first correspondent in Harrow Manorway are indeed breeding. Pedestrians are diverted into the road with a consequent width reduction to allow utility services to be moved prior to the installation of a roundabout and another pedestrian crossing to serve the new Sainsbury’s store and hotel (Cross Quarter).

Crossrail Crossrail Crossrail Crossrail

I am beginning to feel trapped. I can no longer get to Blackwall Tunnel easily because of Greenwich’s success in making McLeod Road and Plumstead High Street a no go area for motorists - two shops and the petrol station no longer get money from me - and now the bypass (A2016) is becoming ever more difficult to access. Between them, Bexley and Greenwich councils are intent on causing traffic problems even before any bridge is built.

Bexley’s road planning probably owes much to incompetence but a friend once found herself at a Christmas party and making conversation with a man who approached her said “what do you do?”. The man said he was in charge of Public Realm at Greenwich council and his job was to “piss off as many motorists as possible”. It was a few years ago now but true nevertheless.

Returning from the Harrow Manorway photo sortie on foot I realised for the first time that pedestrians from the north have to cross the dual carriageway three times in order to get to Wilton Road. The second photo in the group immediately above shows yet more traffic lights in Felixstowe Road.


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