Vicki Macleod for Weybridge in the Surrey Elections 4th May 2017

On Thursday 4th May, you have a  chance to elect a new councillor to represent Weybridge on Surrey County Council.

Your local Liberal Democrat candidate is long term Weybridge resident Vicki Macleod.

You may know Vicki from her work in our local community, perhaps from her five years chairing the Friends of The Weybridge Centre charity. or as a school governor.

Vicki‘s priority is to give Weybridge a stronger voice for better delivery of the services local people need, including:

  • Better maintained and safer local roads and pavements
  • Local school places for Weybridge children
  • Responsible budget management by Surrey County Council

Many people see Surrey County Council as remote and inefficient with its history of mismanagement. Vicki will work with other councillors to put pressure on the administration for more effective financial management and for budgets that reflect local needs.  Her longer term aim is to see some of the services currently run by Surrey brought into local Elmbridge control.

Read more at elmbridgelibdems.org.uk

 

M25 / A3 Junction – consultation on proposed changes

Dates and times for the Highways Agency Exhibition:
Friday, 3 February – 12 noon to 8pm, Saturday 4 February – 10am to 3pm

Closing date for feedback on the proposals:
Monday, 6 February.

Proposals for M25/A3 junction
The Highways Agency has put forward two proposals for improving safety and traffic flow around the M25/A3 junction (known as the M25/A3 Wisley interchange) and are inviting views from the public.  The two proposed alterations are known as Option 9 and Option 14.

Option 9 – a new flyover to link right-turning movements from the A3 onto the M25

Option 14 – enlarging the existing roundabout, to add more capacity

Information on the proposals and a link to giving electronic feedback can be found here.

If you prefer to respond in writing, you can pick up a hard copy of the questionnaire from one of the two February scheme exhibition events and send it back to the Highways Agency via Freepost.

Exhibitions and consultation

There are two opportunities, on Friday, 3rd and Saturday, 4th February, for local people to see the proposals at a public exhibition at the Cobham Hilton (KT11 1EW), hosted by the Highways Agency. The exhibition gives local residents an opportunity to get more information about the schemes and to ask questions about the proposals.

A point of view
As well as improving safety and traffic flow, the proposed changes claim to be responsive to the following:

  • supporting sustainable travel routes promoted by Surrey County Council and developers
  • supporting economic growth and ensuring the junction can accommodate extra traffic
  • mitigating environmental impacts wherever possible

What a shame then, that the proposals do not take any account of the highly likely knock-on effect of the improvements – such as the bottlenecks that will be increased at the Seven Hills Road / A245 junction, which local workers and residents who travel in rush hour already know only too well.

Other thoughts are:

As part of this scheme, the Highways Agency are also looking at the A3 between Ockham and Painshill. Improvements could include widening parts of the A3 to four lanes, creating an extra lane for vehicles turning left onto the A245 at the Painshill roundabout, and changing local accesses to make these safer and cause fewer delays on the A3.

Surrey’s Parking Proposals For Weybridge

I have just been told that Surrey is to publish its proposals for parking on Friday.  Do give your views on Surrey’s Plans.  Look at Surrey’s proposals with its reasons for change.  Two sets of maps: north and south.

Double-yellow-lines-on-a-road-and-pavement-curb-2101582Surrey is advertising its parking proposals for Weybridge on Friday, 30 September 2016, by way of a press notice published in the Surrey Advertiser.  There now follows a four week period during which anyone may object, support, or comment on the proposals.

Surrey staff will be on site on Friday erecting street notices at the locations affected. Surrey will also send postcards (with a copy of the street notice on the front, and the relevant drawing on the rear) to properties fronting any proposals (about 460 in total), and make hard copies of the plans available in the library, borough and county offices, as well as on it website.

Surrey will also be writing again to all the residents that it consulted in May/June 2016 regarding the permit area F. This includes Cedar Road, The Crescent, Dorchester Road, Gascoigne Road, Elmgrove Road, Holstein Avenue, Monument Green, Mount Pleasant, Oakdale Road,  St Albans Avenue  and Thames Street.

The deadline for comments is 28 October, and people who would like to object, support, or comment, may do so via Surrey’s online form (from Friday), or in writing to

Weybridge Parking Review
Surrey Parking Team
Rowan House, Merrow Lane
MERROW
GU4 7BQ

surrey-parking-plans-2016

Extension of Heathrow – Have your say

heathrowAs part of its assessment on the proposed expansion of Heathrow airport, the borough held a ‘Scrutiny in a day’ meeting on Friday 16 September at the Civic Centre on the High Street, Esher.

Chaired by Councillor Christine Elmer, the aim of the meeting was to investigate and probe all the arguments surrounding the proposed expansion of Heathrow.  Recognising that there could be significant benefits for Elmbridge residents but that these need to be considered against environmental, transport infrastructure and safety impacts, the councillors heard from a range of stakeholders including Heathrow Ltd, Local Authorities Aircraft Noise Council (LAANC) who updated on air quality and noise concerns, the Council’s Housing Strategy and Enabling Manager and Economic Development Officer, as well as representations from private sector companies in the Borough.

Residents Action Group Elmbridge (RAGE) discussed their views on the proposed expansion of Heathrow with the Councillors at a meeting on Thursday, 15 September.

The borough is eager for Elmbridge residents to have their say. If you want to share your thoughts on the proposed expansion, then please complete the online survey. The survey is available on the Elmbridge website until midnight on 30 September.

Resurfacing

Digger’s Bridge.  The bridge by Weybridge station has been resurfaced – big improvement.  However, even when driving across it I noticed that it was very bumpy. This worries me because it seems that it was a full resurface and not a skim.  When a highway is given a full resurface it is usually very smooth – like Holstein Avenue where I live.  Even a cyclist cannot feel any bumps because the surface is as smooth as glass.  Because bridges are difficult to resurface given their location, I would have thought one would not want to maintain the location too often and therefore a full resurface would be provided.  Is the recent work a poorly done full resurface or a halfway measure?

Weybridge Point.  Place where Walton Lane, Weybridge meets Thames Street was been recently resurfaced.  Could this be an opportunity not to replace the overly “main highway” road markings used in the past?  I know that it is a bend but it is in a 20mph zone.  If it has to have markings could they at least be minimal?

Night Street Lights

Heritage LampsSurrey has 89,000 street lights.  Currently the vast majority of them are dimmed by up to half from 22:00 to 05:30 each night.

Surrey is considering going further in the autumn by turning off some street lights from midnight to 5:00.  The driver of this plan is, of course, to save money – the reduction of CO2 is a welcome bonus but not the reason (there are plenty of actions that Surrey could undertake to reduce carbon emissions but they are not taken).  There is also the bonus of less light pollution.

Surrey wants to hear your views the matter by 2 September.   As usual Surrey, along with with the British government recently, asks for a view without a clear picture of the alternative.  It would have been useful for Surrey to have shown, on its interactive Surrey map, the streets left in darkness and those that will remain lit .

Some answers to your questions.

Tell Surrey your general views on highways by the end of August.

Thames Byfleet Cycleway

Heath RoadThe Liberal Democrats along with its allies in the new coalition administration agreed in cabinet today to proceed with studies to facilitate a path/cycleway alongside the Heath from the station to Brooklands Lane.  This land is held in common and is therefore heavily protected so any proposal with have to be very sensitive to the green space.

Campaigners have been seeking such a development for over two decades and there is still more work to come.

You can check the details here.

Town Meeting on Parking

Double-yellow-lines-on-a-road-and-pavement-curb-2101582Following the disturbing lack of engagement of residents, businesses and other interested parties by Surrey in its review of parking in Weybridge, your local Lib Dems decided to host a consultation meeting in the Weybridge Community Centre, Churchfields Place at 8:00pm, on Thursday, 14 July.

Discussion will include off-street and on-street parking policies; safety, parking on main roads; the balance between shoppers, workers and residents; and, the most effective way to ration available spaces.  It will also discuss approach to individual streets such as Curzon Road, Grenside Road, Pine Grove Road and Wey Road.  It will be an action filled event and school drop-offs etc will also be discussed.

Surrey’s parking review for Weybridge was up for decision at the Local Committee meeting on 27 June.  Cllr Andrew Davis argued that the consultation process should involve more presentation and dialogue with local residents before a set of firm proposals was put forward. He was supported by colleagues across all parties.  This resulted in the local committee agreeing that Surrey officers should discuss and amend the proposal in direct consultation with your Weybridge councillors at the end of July.

The previous proposal are here.

 

New Lights in Town

Traffic LightsIs it just me or are these new pedestrian crossing lights facing the wrong way.

Surely, if you have two displays, the upper ones should facing the people crossing from the other side.

The upper displays were probably added because only having one display mean that people could not see if there were many people waiting.

I know that Puffin crossings are supposed to be an improvement on the old Pelican crossing that we are used to but like so many engineering features they can have the opposite effect.

Studies show that the new Puffins are marginally safer than the old Pelicans. What they mean is that there are fewer injuries associated with Puffins than Pelicans. Traffic engineers often confuse fewer and less serious accidents with a place being safer. One could put guard rails along the entire High Street so that no -one can cross the street without using a car.  That would make the High Street “safer” but it make it less amenable for walking.  In my view if a High Street was a guard rail there is someone wrong with the layout and design of the street.

Guard rails in High Streets, pro-car new traffic signals, poor road surfaces – it re-enforces the notion that our Surrey administration favours Chelsea tractors over walking.

The reason why Puffins have the display on the post is to make pedestrians look at the on coming traffic.  Imagine if the traffic signals for cars where placed not ahead but to the left and the right.

I am awaiting an answer from Surrey Highways regarding this replacement programme.  I hadn’t seen any thing about it in the committee papers and it was not discussed.  I hope it not a waste of money.

This picture happens to show my workplace – no not the Ship but above Waitrose.

Old Bridge

Wey BridgeThe road surface over Weybridge’s Old Bridge has been poor for too long.   Wey Meadows residents pointed out to me that this short stretch must be the worst in Weybridge.  I called Surrey’s chief highways engineer who reviewed the situation and told me that following inspection of the bridge the structure team had decided to bring the resurfacing work forward to June or July this year.

In the meantime there will be extra patching (now installed but not satisfactory).

Surrey structures team does not believe that the poor surface threatens the integrity of the bridge itself.

I would bring all the schedules of work into the public domain so that we could at least see the order in which these works were to be done and why.  Whilst none of us want delay (like waiting for a bus) we feel better if we know when the project will begin (like bus indicator boards).  The technology is not that expensive and I believe it would save Surrey money.