Category: Transport

Hump with no bump: Ludlow Sandpits traffic calming scheme speeds up traffic!

After years of discussions, a road safety scheme has been installed by Shropshire Council outside Ludlow Primary School on Sandpits Road. It doesn’t work. If anything, it speeds up traffic approaching the school gates. “This is not the scheme we expected”, says Shropshire Councillor for Ludlow East Tracey Huffer. “After years of discussions, a scheme for improving road safety outside the school has been implemented. There are new signs and new road markings. The centrepiece of the scheme is a raised table, a wide road hump. But the table is too low. It has no effect on the speed of traffic. If anything, it is speeding traffic up because it is so smooth. It is a hump with no bump.” Tracey is now calling for an urgent site meeting with highways officers, parents and residents to discuss how the scheme can be improved. There has been a campaign for a safety scheme outside the school by parents, school governors and councillors for several years. The main concerns have been traffic travelling faster than is safe and careless parking. A scheme was approved a year ago and was installed after an extensive closure of Sandpits Road by Seven Trent Water and…

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Time for normal service on trains through Ludlow to be resumed to boost economy and reduce overcrowding

Around the country, train services are returning to normal timetables. Not though on Transport for Wales, where services along the Marches line have been halved. This leading to overcrowded carriages and an increased risk of Covid-19 transmission. Notifications such as the one above at Ludlow rail station a few days ago are no use if overcrowded trains are only running hourly. If you are on your way to an essential meeting or hospital appointment you will have no choice but to get the train even if it is overcrowded. At the end of 2019, there were 26 trains from Ludlow to Shrewsbury. Now, there are just 18 trains a day at intervals of 52 minutes to 69 minutes. There are no longer through trains to North Wales and passengers must change at Shrewsbury. I am concerned that the service along the Borders will remain one train an hour, not the three trains every two hours it once was. In the week that the Rail Operators Group launched “Let’s get back on track” to encourage people to get back on board, Transport for Wales should tell us what its plans are to get its trains out of the sidings and back…

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Salopia Flog It! Shropshire Council to raise cash in a roundabout way (updated)

Update. The council’s cabinet has agreed to implement this scheme. The council’s cabinet will tomorrow (Wednesday) discuss a proposal to install advertisements roundabouts, boundary signs, lampposts and verges. This commercialisation of public space is predicted to generate £392,000 for the council over four years. The plans will also clutter the county with around 270 roadside signs, with the possibility of others to follow on bus shelters, bridges, central reservations, barriers, waste bins and street furniture, hanging baskets and flower beds, customer vehicles, customer buildings, car parks, statues and so the list goes on.

Ambitious £120 million dream for Shropshire Highways (updated)

Update: Shropshire Council has agreed to persue this strategy. Do highways chiefs dream of tarmac sheep? There is certainly a lot of dreaming going on in Shirehall. In the May elections, the Conservative group promised an extra £10 million a year for highways for the next four years. At the time, the council said it would find the extra money from grants, extra government funding, cuts to other budgets and the council’s diminishing reserves. The council has “found” this year’s £10 million by raiding the broadband, commercial and drainage budgets. Even so, ten million pounds proves to be little more than a drop of a rainwater in a flooded pothole. Highways chiefs estimate it will cost £600 million to bring Shropshire’s highways up to scratch. In your dreams on getting that much. Instead, Shropshire Council is aiming to “investigate a highway investment strategy of between £60m and £120m” over the next five years. That is still dreamy stuff in when local government finances are stretched and getting more so.

Shropshire Council is lagging other councils on highways fault reporting. The online reporting system is clunky. It can be difficult to describe where the fault is especially in rural areas where postcodes can cover such wide areas, they are next to useless. But now the council is adopting Fix My Street as its main portal for reporting highways problems. Fix My Street also covers a lot more than potholes. I would recommend this for reporting problems because it allows residents and councillors to see whether problems have been reported before, whether they have been fixed and whether there are more problems in some areas than others.

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