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Bonkers Blog January 2017

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20 January - Bexley Council is ‘Having a Larf’

A correspondent notes that blog material has been in short supply recently and suggests it will be allowing time for me to do other things. There is a lot of truth in that but the emphasis should be reversed. I am giving priority to the other things which have been taking far too much time and there has been none left over for digging into what might be going unreported.

It’s amazing how many people think that retirement means loads of free time spent sitting around doing nothing. Obviously I am not good at refusals because I find myself an unpaid hospital visitor, carer, taxi driver, commercial photographer, personal shopper and IT consultant. I have unanswered email going back to New Year and the TV has only been on once in 2017. Maybe I am just a poor organiser.

Albion Road Albion RoadHelpfully the aforesaid correspondent has written a short blog for me and even supplied the title used above. He is not at all pleased about what Bexley Council is doing in Albion Road. (It’s a pity he doesn’t own a camera.)

A trip to Albion Road was on the agenda for this week as Bexley Council had announced that they would start to destroy it this week, but at Wednesday’s Transport Users’ Committee meeting they said the start had been deferred to next week, so I was glad of the excuse not to go there.

The following report suggests the Committee does not know what it is talking about.

Some expensive work has just commenced in Albion Road, Bexleyheath which is funded by Transport for London. It will result in the previous two traffic lanes in each direction being reduced to one lane each way but creating TWO cycle lanes for the virtually non–existent cyclists.

As a local resident I cannot recall the last time I actually saw anyone cycling along Albion Road.

I would guess this proposal must have been initially approved in Boris Johnson’s time and that it was probably a precondition to obtain TFL funding that any scheme must include cycle lanes even if no cyclists use the route.

Bexley Council Highways Department has been asked several times if any surveys of actual cycle usage along Albion Road have ever been undertaken but surprise surprise the question has been ignored. I wonder what a Freedom of Information request might reveal?

The first phase of the work is taking place between the roundabout at the Oaklands Road car park entrance and the Townley Road roundabout. The central wall between the carriageways is to be removed and to facilitate this work the traffic lane either side of the central barrier has been coned off. For the remaining lanes which can still be used Bexley Council have put up signs warning motorists of NARROW LANES but then adding the instruction DO NOT OVERTAKE(non-existent) CYCLISTS.

As the heading says someone really is ‘Having a Larf’!!!!

BashfordAt the Transport Users’ meeting, the engineer in charge of this madcap scheme said that the later stages of construction will cause “significant disruption”. I suspect that the roundabouts proposed for Gravel Hill at both the Watling Street and Albion Road junctions might improve traffic flow although if they are as silly as those installed elsewhere in the borough, maybe not.

The idiocy imposed on Ruxley in 2010 by the same design team has been featured on a website which highlights all sorts of dubious decisions. £140,000 down the drain.

Who in their right mind halves the capacity of a town’s bypass?

Andrew Bashford is the man who told me back in 2009 that his road designs complied with the recommendations of the Transport Research Laboratory unaware that my son was their safety consultant at the time. I wish that all of Bexley Council’s lies were so easy to disprove.

No blog tomorrow. Granddaughter is seven already, party to go to. How did that happens so quickly? She wants a science book. Enid Blyton is for kids!


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