Many residents will have been disappointed at the news that the planned 20mph limits around Hayes’ schools have been shelved following Transport for London (TfL) withdrawing the necessary funding.
Unfortunately TfL’s parlous financial state before the Coronavirus outbreak proved too much and funding the costs of the lockdown meant that many projects have been cancelled. This also includes the more controversial and tentative plans for a ‘School Street’ along George Lane, which was about to enter the early consultation phase.
On a brighter note, some funding has been made available for measures to encourage socially distanced walking and cycling, but for now the other schemes have been put onto the back burner.
Undeterred, as your local councillors we will continue to support ideas to improve the quality of life and travel for our residents, where such schemes are practical, affordable and have the broad support of the community.
The road resurfacing schedule for 2018/19 has been confirmed.
Roads for resurfacing are listed based on information such as technical inspections, input from residents (including the FixMyStreet website) and requests by us as your local councillors.
The roads on the list this year are:
Bourne Vale (part)
Five Elms Road
Hayes Lane (part)
Hayesford Park Drive
Other roads outside but close to the ward:
Church Road (Bromley Common & Keston)
Jackass Lane (part) (Bromley Common & Keston)
Hayes Road (part) (Bromley Town)
Westmoreland Road (part) (Shortlands)
The full report, as presented to the Environment scrutiny committee is under item 6b here.
We don’t yet know precisely when each road will be done and there is always the chance of some slippage in the schedule if, for instance, we experience a hard winter when resources have to be diverted into emergency repairs elsewhere.
Occasionally some rescheduling may also take place as a result of the need to coordinate with utility companies if they have some planned (non-emergency) works of their own, to avoid a newly resurfaced road being dug up just months after it’s been laid. Similarly, non-emergency works requested by utilities shortly after a relaying will also usually be denied.
Following the submission of the plans for redeveloping the farmyard at Hayes Street Farm, your local councillors have been in pressing owners Rookery Estates for clarity on the future of the rest of the land.
The open farmland is not part of the development plans, and as ‘virgin’ green belt is heavily protected against future development regardless of whether the farmyard plans are approved or not. Understandably though, many residents are still worried about what may happen once the farm is no longer operating in its current form.
Rookery tell us that they “envisage having horses on the farm for the foreseeable future although these will be live out horses. No new livery buildings are anticipated. The fishing lake has been let for 10 years so [we] expect this to continue into the future”.
On the future of the boot fairs, George Hoeltschi “has been given permission to hold boot fairs for the next 2 seasons only but Rookery would probably need to curtail this after this year if planning permission is approved for the development”.
Questions remain though about how the future of the rest of the farm can be further secured. Local opinion is split on the boot fairs, but will the land still be viable with just the trout fishery and only live-out provision for horses, for example?
As regards the development proposals themselves, the application for the farmyard plans is open for comment until 24th January. As your local councillors we will be formulating our own detailed response to the plans soon and have already asked that the application is put before a committee for a public hearing, should the recommendation from planning officers be for approval.
After some years of working with various groups, including traders and the Coney Hall Village Residents’ Association, we can at last report that plans have been unveiled for some improvements to the area of Kingsway in front of the shops.
The pavements are to be relaid and improved, and pay & display parking bays introduced on the western (‘Wickes’) side to ensure a better turnover of parking spaces.
Work continues in partnership with the Residents’ Association on plans for a notice board and other possible improvements, and we will continue to seek ways to discourage HGVs from venturing too far into Kingsway and beyond where they have been known to get stuck while turning round.
Bromley’s Conservative Councillors have moved to dispel fears over changes to the borough’s libraries following a misinformation campaign by activists.
Some residents have been in touch with us recently about the proposals to ‘outsource’ Bromley’s libraries to a not-for-profit company.
The Council has confirmed that the proposed changes to the library service will not lead to a single library closing, or a single minute being taken off opening times. If the proposal is approved, the operator would need to run the same level of service or better.
The Council has spent a lot of time looking at the way it works in order to protect frontline services, bearing in mind the tough financial environment it’s facing. Over the next few years, Bromley has to find £24m of savings from a £192m budget. Doing nothing is not an option. It has long been recognised by councils of all political colours, that commissioning companies and charitable trusts to provide services brings value for money for the council tax payer and improved efficiency.
The proposal would keep all libraries open while reducing costs. The libraries would remain in council control, with professional librarians, but would be run by Greenwich Leisure Limited (GLL) – a not-for-profit organisation which was established by a Labour authority to run their library and leisure services. It is virtually identical model to the charitable trust which has successfully run the Borough’s leisure centres since 2004. Staff will be transferred under TUPE regulations protecting their terms and conditions and membership of the Council’s pension scheme.
The savings would be achieved through economies of scale; GLL operates more libraries than Bromley council, so it has greater buying power – for example when purchasing books and computers. It could also reduce back office costs through avoiding duplicate tasks. Public consultations have been supportive of the proposals. In a consultation of 1,837 people in 2014-15, 57% of respondents supported the option of the library service being run by a trust or charitable provider. This is exactly the proposal.
The council also continues to invest in libraries – with brand new ones opening in Penge, Orpington and Biggin Hill over recent years – and is looking to continue that trend, for example at Chislehurst library.
Though not in our ward, many Hayes & Coney Hall residents will be affected by road resurfacing works that Transport for London have announced for the Croydon Road (A232), Hastings Road (A21) and Farnborough Common (including the Fantail/Chapter One junction). The project is scheduled to start on Tuesday 7th March lasting until Thursday 13th April. Various closures and diversion will be in place, though the actual works will take place at nighttime between 9pm and 5am.
The timetable is as follows:
7-14 March 2017 – TfL will put in some temporary traffic lights, enabling traffic to continue to flow on the A21 Hastings Road From 21:00 each night until 05:00 the following morning
15-23 March and 3-6 April – The A232 Croydon Road will be closed between the junctions with the A21 Farnborough Common and Oakley Road. Please follow the signed diversion
26 March – 2 April and 9-13 April – The A232 Croydon Road will be closed between the junctions with Hollydale Drive and the A21 Farnborough Common – The A232 Crofton Road will be closed between the junctions with Farnborough Common and Elm Walk. Please follow the signed diversions.