13 December 2016 Transport Group : Draft Minutes

Draft Minutes of the Transport Group

A committee of the Avebury Parish Council

December 13th 2016

Present:  Rob Macaire, Stephen Stacey Andrew Williamson, Tim Lewis, Moya Brennan, Mike Bedford

  1. Apologies for absence: Angela Norman, Liz Moore
  2. Declarations of interest: None
  3. Acceptance of minutes of 8th March 2016: Corrections suggested by TL accepted and implemented. Accepted.
  4. Actions from minutes: Land at Trusloe for parking at 1-6. Still not clear but also requires housing needs survey output first to determine best use of the land.
  5. Update report from Dr MB and AW including: (i) Extension of 30 mph limit on A4361 Swindon Road: Completed and has had some definite benefits in reducing speeds past Rawlins Park but cars still overtake. Double white lines not an option however as there needs to be limited sight lines to justify. (ii)  Follow up for Atkins design brief for Beckhampton and West Kennett (See appendix 1. Atkin’s report and costings, previously circulated to members).

Discussions noted that there may be some benefit to have representatives of both Beckhampton and West Kennett to discuss some of the suggestions in the brief with Steve Hind.   Inclusion of Sarah Simmonds in the meeting would also be of benefit.

West Kennet for example – Great proposal but stumbling blocks are evident and their impact could be limited if they were phased. It may be that the path in the verge need not be addressed at the same time as narrowing the road for example. Closing the Avenue – would be of benefit to the A4 at West Kennett but should not be linked to it. Suggested that the transport group could bring a proposal to the APC  that the Avenue be closed and see what reaction is noted from the parish.  The proposal would list the benefits as being:

  1. Reduced wear and tear in a sensitive archaelogical area
  2. Safety
  3. Benefits to pedestrians and cycling route
  4. Diverts buses back through Beckhampton which they can currently miss
  5. Allows narrowing of the A4
  6. Conducive to improving the outstanding universal value.                                 HOWEVER, it would be of benefit to run this suggestion via Steve Hind and Sarah Simmonds at the same meeting proposed to review the A4 at Beckhampton and West Kennet but separate the two issues. Information gleaned from this meeting regarding additional benefits of closure of the Avenue may aid in selling the proposal to the Parish.                                                                              Beckhampton                                                                                                    Splitter islands welcomed as is the whole proposal but noted that the splitter on the A4 eastwards should have a cut though to allow access and exit from the pub car parks or end the splitter before the pub. Also not clear whether the bus stop should be on the carriageway given the splitter islands will effectively mean that a parked bus will block the carriageway.                                                                                                          Money: Costs for the designs are £18765 for both schemes. Parish is willing to cover 25% of the two schemes together – costs are Beckhampton £9650 and the fixed fee for West Kennet is £9125. Some money could be raised from local residents and then incentivise CATG to fund the remainder. The group is hopeful that we can raise 25%  from local residents, a suggestion which could be raised at the CATG meeting (15th December) which AW will attend. Also suggested that we could approach Sustrans as a potential supporter of the initiative to raise funds and similarly engage Sarah Simmonds.                                                       Actions:
  • MB to contact Steve Hind and arrange a meeting with Rob Macaire and Sarah       Simmonds to discuss the proposals as noted above
  • MB/RM to poll local residents re funding
  • MBrennan to ask Ryan whether a Sustrans approach of a sponsored cyclethon at the pub may raise significant funds for this project
  1. Footpaths: report by Tim Lewis
    1. Maps of footpaths in APC presented. Meeting held on 13 July 2016 with Stephen Leonard who is the Senior Warden at Wiltshire Council in charge of footpaths in North Wiltshire, including Avebury. As a result, one synthetic sign has been put up from A361 towards Windmill Hill although two signs originally requested by Mr Lewis. The National Trust also put a sign up opposite their car park pointing towards Silbury Hill. Wiltshire council are now down to last 20 signs so no new ones will be placed. Costs of new signage, if we were to replace with oak itemised in TLs report. Costs don’t include working brief for monumental consent. Recycled plastic signs last a lot longer and are one third of the cost (£5700). Idea is to have consistent signs for the whole of the WHS. MBrennan suggested oak signs in the centre of the village and recycled ones further out, as long as they have the same logo/design. APC may contribute some funds to this project as there were some reserves

Actions: Ask Sarah Simmonds and Stephen Leonard if we can arrange a meeting to discuss replacement signs in the whole of the WHS.

  1. Update on double yellow lines in Trusloe: Keep under review
  2. Great West Way project – Interaction with WHS transport strategy

Calne wanted to increase its tourist income by putting a vintage rally in place. But this has now been superceded by Visit Wiltshire who are trying to increase visitation to the A4 corridor by encouraging online bookings from abroad. Funding of £24 million is available. Message from Avebury is that we don’t want an increase in footfall in and around the village and monument

  1. A303 plans near Stonehenge and implications for Avebury – information only

Short tunnel proposal for A303 is such that it would emerge within the WHS and as a result may jeopardise the archaeology and the status of Stonehenge as a WHS. Since Avebury and Stonehenge are linked as a single WHS, the loss of WHS for Stonehenge would lose Aveburys status as well.

  1. Signage Audit: Road sign audit needs to be completed. Ask Sarah Simmonds for the proforma as discussed
  2. Any other business: None
  3. Date of next meeting: TBA

Meeting adjourned at 21:35

Appendices

1.  Atkin’s Report and Costings

8 March 2016 Transport Group Meeting : Minutes

8 March 2016 Transport Group Meeting

A committee of the Avebury Parish Council

Present : Mike Bedford, Rob Macaire, Angela Norman, Andrew Williamson, Tim Lewis, Dave Brotheridge.

1. Apologies for absence – Liz Moore. Steven and Moira and Peter Wilson, David Brotheridge (for first 30 minutes of meeting). Mike Daniel no longer a member via Parish Council.
1. Question of quorum came up as only 2 parish council members were present and at the initiation of the meeting 3 members of the public. Agreed we should assume quorum and proceed
2. Declarations of interest
1. None
3. Acceptance of minutes of 18th January 2016
1. RM suggested that the crossing points should be considered as a phased development and not be considered as an alternative to the developments of the main plans.
Proposed AW seconded TL
4. Actions from minutes: Proforma from Sarah Simmonds (SS) for Signage Audit – SS has made several inquiries but as yet not found the relevant person. She will be meeting with WC and feedback once she has located the right person. Will not cover footpaths but all other signage.
5. Update report from Dr MB and AW including:
(i) Application to CATG for extension of 30 mph limit on A4361 Swindon Road, This has gone in and will be confirmed at the CATG on 17th March. APC has agreed to put up £1000  or 25% of total cost (whichever is lower) to match funding for this work as this is now a pre-requisite for such work to go ahead
(ii) Informal crossing points. No developments as yet. MB/AW to discuss ideas with Sarah Simmonds
(iii) Non-slip surface across A4 at Beckhampton
AW to meet with Martin Cook (highways engineer) to look at non-slip surface for horses. Could be done with v little funding and agree that it could be linked to the informal crossing point design as discussed in item ii) above
6. Funding: including raising private contributions for fees for design work on A4 at Beckhampton and West Kennett.
Sukhvir Kaur (who is the secretary servicing CATG) contacted to get costs for getting a detailed quote for the overall design work. MB to re-send the request with comment that we are ready to contribute from private, business and local funds.
7. Footpaths: report by Tim Lewis including list of existing, missing and desirable signposts, and list of rights of way in Avebury parish (for information).
1. Audit is now 2.5 pages. Signposts are either synthetic black posts but there are also wooden posts with fingers with names and distances – latter more informative, better looking but looking old and in need of replacement. Some have the fingers missing. Where a footpath leaves a metalled road there is a statutory obligation to have a sign. This is not always adhered to. Not clear who put them in but some do comply with the sign requirements (eg horse for bridleway) and some don’t. Such wooden signposts more desirable but question is cost – may be more expensive, but regardless they should be compliant. Cycleway signage is also sporadic and needs auditing for veracity. Target is to identify which signs need replacing and have discussion with highways authority as to which they are obliged to replace. TL to talk with Richard Broadhead (Wilts Rights of Way officer) and Sarah Simmonds regarding what is obligatory.  Question whether such signage consistency should be extended throughout the WHS was discussed and agreed was a good idea.
8. Signage Audit
See item above
9. Parking in Avebury Trusloe:
(i) Update on WC meeting with private landowners.  Meeting on 14th March with Centurion, Aster and Wiltshire Council to discuss possible solutions
(ii) Review of parking outside 1-6 Trusloe Cottages. Different points of view, some think it is a good idea but owners of 1-6 think it is a bad idea. Will likely come up at AGM for APC. Soundings of Trusloe residents will discover whether they want eg railings removed to allow parking. Currently no solution.
(iii) Survey of perceived and actual speeds in Avebury Trusloe. Needs to be monitored with speed gun. MB to contact Antoinette and find who raised the issue to find out when would be best to monitor
10. Any other business
1. Avenue – RM – Question regarding closing the Avenue. Up to this point in time this issue has been avoided to prevent conflict as opinions are divided. Should we have an opinion? This point should be put on the agenda for next meeting so it can be discussed and output/idea forwarded to APC for potential polling of views from the community
2. Chevrons in Avebury, leaving towards Swindon seem to be wanting. Questioned as to whether this is needed. Recall from meeting with Dave Thomas and Philip Whitehead was that they are not legally required in 30mph zones.
11. Date of next meeting: 19th April @ 1900hr

18 Jan 2016 Transport Group : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council

Transport Group

Minutes of the Transport Group Committee of Avebury Parish Council held at the Social Centre, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF at 8pm on Monday 18th January 2016.

In these minutes APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, AONB for Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site, CATG for Community Area Transport Group, DfT for Department of Transport and WC for Wiltshire Council.

Time Start: 20:03

  1. Transport Group members present: Dr Mike Bedford (Chairman of the Group and Vice-Chairman APC), Mike Daniel, Tim Lewis, Rob Macaire, Angela Norman and Andrew Williamson (member and Chairman of APC).                         Members of the public present: none.                                                                 In attendance: Liz Moore (Clerk).
  2. Apologies for absence: Stephen Stacey.
  3. Declarations of interest: none
  4. Acceptance of minutes of 19th November 2015: the minutes were unanimously agreed as an accurate record. Proposed by Mr Williamson and seconded by Mr Daniel.
  5. Actions from minutes: Dr MB and AW to follow up with SS for the proforma required for the signage audit.
  6. Report from Dr MB and AW on 5 January 2016 meeting with WC’s Cabinet Member for Highways Cllr Philip Whitehead and Highways Engineer Dave Thomas. The Chairman asked members for their feedback on the notes from the meeting on 5 January 2016 at County Hall including the discussion on the four elements from the Transport Strategy contained in the notes dated 14 January 2016 (previously circulated to members and see appendix 1).
    • RM questioned the tone of the meeting and reflected that there seemed to be a lot of negative responses from WC.

    The Chairman said that the meeting was not unduly negative; while some suggestions had been resisted, WC had made some positive suggestions as well.  He explained that a lot of the smaller projects were going to be more expensive than originally perceived and there was a question mark as to whether legislation or DfT guidance would be used to give the go ahead for a project. He said that on a positive note that meant implementation of the proposals would require negotiations by the Parish Council.

    • MD said he was annoyed by the suggestion a 40 or 50 mph buffer zone north of a new 30mph limit on A4361 would not work and that a no overtaking policy on Swindon Road had to be dangerous to be implemented.

    The Chairman explained if the new 30 mph limit on the A4361 didn’t improve safety then the Parish Council could still request additional works at a later date. He added that WC was not unsympathetic to the need for the major works on the A4 at Beckhampton and West Kennett but that budgets were very tight.

    AW reported WC had limited capacity to draft a design with a costing for works on the A4 as they only had one person working on Highways locally.  But at the CATG meeting on 17 December it had been resolved that CATG would ask WC to get consultants Atkins to quote a price to draw up plans and provide costs. CATG anticipated that their fee was likely to be in the region of at least £5,000. Members noted the next CATG meeting would be taking place on 17 March.

    AW introduced WC’s suggestion of implementing informal pedestrian crossings within the Parish. Members expressed a lot of support for the idea and were keen on having several crossing points across the Parish including in the middle of the village. AW explained crossings would need to be distinct to the AWHS and use for example a chalk or neutral colour. Members noted that to drive the project forward SS would need to get all the partners together to agree a scheme.

  7. Report from AW on CATG meeting 17 December 2015: already covered under item 6. AN asked for clarification on purpose of CATG within the structure of WC. AW explained there were 18 Area Boards with budgets in Wiltshire, Marlborough Area Board being one of them.  CATG was a sub group (consisting of 4 WC Councillors) that dealt with low budget Highways issues. CATG had had larger budgets in earlier years which had, for example, enabled it to fund the £11,000 cost of the pavement extension near Avebury Trusloe bus shelters, but funding was much reduced now.  He added CATG was the gate-keeper to bigger funding sources such as the Highways Substantive Fund and could move projects towards those sources.
    • Decision: members noted a copy of the meeting notes of 5 January had been sent to APC members for consideration at next Council meeting on 2 February and that after that meeting Dr MB and AW would request another meeting with WC. Transport Group members endorsed this process, approving the recommendations set out in the paper. Proposed by RM, seconded MD and carried unanimously.
  8. Footpaths: the Chairman invited TL to introduce his proposals for improving the footpaths in Avebury and see report (appendix 2). A map of the Parish footpaths was also tabled. TL reported the footpaths were generally in good condition except those use by 4×4 vehicles or tractors and listed several observations contained in the report. TL said that since his report issues on route AVEB15 had been addressed and stiles were now in place at both ends of the path. Members noted TL had only walked the footpaths in Avebury and not the whole of the AWHS. In discussion members expressed concern that considerable damage had been recently done to a byway near Adam and Eve stones by 4×4 vehicles and noted the police were now involved as landowners’ fences had also been damaged. Action: AW advised Beth Thomas at WC was currently producing a footpath plan and Transport Group should point TL in her direction. TL added there was a need for consistent policy to replace all footpath signage. It was noted TL could find no reference that signs should be made of oak and strongly recommended the use of synthetic signs. TL to draw up a list and email the Clerk.
  9. Signage Audit: members noted they were waiting for pro-forma from SS.
  10. Parking in Avebury Trusloe: AW reported WC had received a positive reply from the private land owners and they had agreed to attend a meeting. AW added the Parish Council had carried out a site visit to Avebury Trusloe on Saturday 16 January and had also looked at the possibility of car parking provision in the area outside 1-5 Trusloe Cottages.
  11. Any other business: none
  12. Date of next meeting: provisional date: 7pm on 7 or 8 March at the Social Centre
  13. The meeting closed at 21:11

Appendices:

  1. Notes from meeting with Cllr Philip Whitehead, Dave Thomas, Sarah Simmonds, Andrew Williamson and Mike Bedford on 5 January 2016 at County Hall.
  2. Footpaths: report by Tim Lewis dated 7 July 2015.

[The AWHS Transport Strategy was also viewed by members at the meeting].

19 Nov 2015 Transport Group : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council

Transport Group

Minutes of the Transport Group Committee of Avebury Parish Council held at the Social Centre, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF at 8:15pm on Thursday 19th November 2015.

In these minutes APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, AONB for Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site, CATG for Community Area Transport Group.

Time Start: 20:17

[The Clerk advised that a minimum of three Parish Councillors should be at the meeting as per the Transport Group Committee’s Terms of Reference. Members decided to continue with the meeting as an exception].

  1. Transport Group members present: Dr Mike Bedford (Chairman of the Group and Vice-Chairman APC), Moya Brannon, Rob Macaire, Angela Norman, Stephen Stacey and Andrew Williamson (member and Chairman of APC). Members of the public present: none In attendance: Sarah Simmonds (WHS Officer) and Liz Moore (Clerk).
  2. Apologies for absence: Dave Brotheridge, Tim Lewis, Paul Ryder-Morris and Peter Wilson.
  3. Declarations of interest: none
  4. Acceptance of minutes of 9th June 2015: the minutes were unanimously agreed as an accurate record. Proposed by Mr Macaire and seconded by Dr Bedford.
  5. Actions from minutes: not covered / refer to main agenda.
  6. Update on 30 mph limit in Avebury on A4361: AW reported that further to APC’s proposal being supported by CATG the engineers report had not taken the AWHS Transport Strategy into consideration and its recommendation of a 30 mph limit on the Swindon road. As a result of that error the proposal did not comply with WC policy to warrant a 30 mph limit as not enough properties fronted the road. AW explained that a policy decision within WC needed to be taken to incorporate AWHS Transport Strategy into Highways policy. AW said a meeting would be taking place shortly between Dr MB, AW, (both representing APC), SS (WHS Officer) and the Chairman of Highways, Councillor Philip Whitehead. MB questioned how other villages managed to get works agreed and SS assured her she had recently had an internal meeting on implementing the AWHS Strategy and that the document would not be disregarded. MB asked what the next steps in the process would be and timescales for project start date. SS explained CATG would be asked to review the report and said that it would then be reconsidered.  She also said that the A4 projects (below) would go to CATG for consideration on 17 December. AW added that some design work would need to be done and he was not sure himself on the timescales. SS offered to attend the CATG meeting and request an agenda item so that she could explain the AWHS Transport Strategy to the meeting and CATG Chairman, Councillor James Shepherd.
  7. CATG proposals for Beckhampton: Dr MB explained the Parish’s priorities for Beckhampton as per the draft document: Area Board Issue 4245: Speeding traffic at Beckhampton and West Kennett (previously circulated to members and see appendix 1). MB asked if the splitter islands would be grassed and SS confirmed they should be grassed as opposed to an urban look. SS asked if anyone knew the purpose of the metal post that had appeared on the highway beside Beckhampton roundabout and reported that even the Head of Planning did not know what it was for. Members had no information so SS said she would investigate further. In discussion members considered whether to ask for no lights on the roundabout. SS said as an alternative, different lights could be sourced but a review would need to take place and if this happened WC should consult with APC on the design. Dr MB invited RM to introduce the Parish’s priorities for West Kennett.
  8. CATG proposals for West Kennett: (previously circulated to members and see appendix 1). RM stated all the residents at West Kennett were in favour of the project however it was hampered by not knowing the costs [and that was why a village meeting had not been arranged]. RM asked SS for her feedback on the priorities and she advised they were fine. AW reported there was a new Clerk for the CATG and the reports would need to be sent to that person two weeks prior to the CATG meeting. Action: AW to circulate the final draft document for CATG to Transport Group members. (Further to ACP Council meeting on 1 December) AW to email the new Clerk with the proposals and ask for an agenda item for SS. A draft letter written by RM was tabled seeking sponsorship from organisations (see appendix 2). Members agreed they would like to start the process of consulting local businesses for funding by word of mouth initially.
  9. Progress of proposals for Avebury Trusloe including parking and consideration of extension of 30 mph limit on A4361: AW reported they were currently waiting for a reply from the private landowner in order to progress with the parking proposal. Dr MB said the Beckhampton proposal linked to the extension of 30 mph limit on A4361 as it would create a 40mph speed limit from Beckampton roundabout to Avebury Trusloe. Further action deferred.
  10. Footpaths: report by Tim Lewis deferred to next meeting as TL was not present. SS said she would like TL’s details to give to her colleague Beth Thomas who was working with rights of way on an access strategy. AW to email SS. MB highlighted the lack of signage on many of the paths around village in particular the Windmill Hill area.
  11. WH Transport Strategy including signage audit: Signage Audit and Redesign: SS explained this was not a top priority for WC however if the methodology was put in place it could be done by volunteers. SS agreed to talk to the Highways Officer to obtain some proforma documentation. AW invited SS to provide information on WC’s priorities. SS explained she was currently working on some large projects including:
    1. Research with Historic England to look at the damage to the monuments on the B4003 Avenue road.
    2. A ‘Setting Study’ to look at how infrastructure projects affected the Stonehenge setting.

    In discussion members noted that buses continued to use the Avenue as a shortcut even though they were not supposed to but it was noted this was not illegal. Mr Stacey said width and weight restriction signage should be considered and MB suggested a ‘quiet lane’ sign as per the signs in situ at Woodborough. SS said the use of signage would come up for wider discussion however highways expectation was that advisory signs did not work. On the one hand members felt this could be challenged and was a defeatist attitude, on the other hand they were not in agreement with a lot of signage and therefore the solution would need to be thought through carefully. SS said the project would need a lot of local support to progress. Members would wait to receive the methodology/proforma documents from SS.

    SS added that another priority project for WC was:   c. Protecting byways and collecting evidence with the Ridgeway Partnership and other organisations on the issue of four by four vehicles damaging the Ridgeway. SS stated APC could offer support by writing a letter to WC.

    B4003 West Kennett Avenue Closure:

    SS said there would need to be local support for B4003 West Kennett Avenue Closure. Some members strongly disagreed with the proposal for closing the Avenue, others were in favour. Further discussion deferred.

    Mr Stacey asked SS for her views on Green Street. SS stated WC must allow reasonable accesses for the public, but at the same time promote tranquillity and therefore a balance needed to be achieved. AW stated approximately £2,000 was available from APC for a signage audit and that GPS and photography would need to be used to carry out the audit. AW added the volunteers would need a programme for removing the signs. SS reported that the new AWHS boundary sign was similar to the Stonehenge sign, that the background colour of the sign was light blue and no additional signage would be used.

  12. Process for moving projects forward: the proposed extension of 30mph speed limit on A4361 Avebury to Swindon road on hold until after APC’s meeting with Councillor Whitehead (Chairman of Highways). [Members questioned whether they should have a standalone document for the A4 and it was agreed Dr MB and AW should seek advice from Councillor Whitehead at their meeting]. The proposed scheme to improve the A4 at Beckhampton and West Kennett to go to CATG for consideration at 17 December meeting. If WC agreed to the designs (+ rough costing by Highways) the projects would then go to CATG March meeting for decision as to whether CATG would help support a bid to the Substantive Highways Scheme Fund.
  13. Any other business:
      1. The Clerk reported Mr Brotheridge had asked her to inform the meeting that he had independently reported to WC that the chevron sign on the bend from Swindon to Avebury (near the NT Manor entrance) had fallen down.
  14. Date of next meeting: 7pm on Friday 8th January 2016.
  15. The meeting closed at 21:37

Appendices:

  1. Draft CATG Application to support Area Board Issue 4245: Speeding traffic at Beckhampton and West Kennett: second draft
  2. Request for sponsorship: draft letter by RM

9th June 2015 Transport Group : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council 

Transport Group

Minutes of a meeting of the Transport Group of Avebury Parish Council held at the Social Centre, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF at 7pm on Tuesday 9th June 2015.

In these minutes APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, AONB for Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site, CATG for Community Area Transport Group, NWD AONB for North Wessex Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Time Start: 19:02

  1. Transport Group members present: Dr Mike Bedford (Chairman of the Group and Vice-Chairman APC), David Brotheridge (member APC), Rob Macaire (from item 4 to part way through item 6), Angela Norman, Stephen Stacey and Andrew Williamson (member and Chairman of APC). Members of the public present: none
  2. Apologies for absence: Moya Brannon, Mike Daniel (member APC), Kate Fry, Keith Howell (member APC), Simon Vatcher and Peter Wilson.
  3. Declarations of interest: none
  4. Acceptance of minutes of 11 May 2015: the Clerk tabled revised minutes received from Mr Macaire and read out a proposed amendment at item 7a. – RM joined the meeting. RM read out further amendments that supported and clarified the document (See appendix 1). The Clerk tabled the list of funding sources to be included in the appendix of the minutes. Further to the above amendments and inclusions, the minutes were unanimously agreed as an accurate record. Proposed by Mr Brotheridge and seconded by Dr Bedford.
  5. Actions from minutes:
    1. Additional trees on Swindon Road. (Min ref. 9 c). DB stated he had taken a look at the site and he did not think it would be practical to plant more trees. Further action deferred to next meeting when hopefully those members who had made the request would be present.
    2. Application to CATG to extend 30mph limit on Swindon Road northwards to Rutlands Farm. (Min ref. 9 a). AW said the application was going to be considered by CATG at a meeting on 25 June 2015. AW reported that if the application was successful the next step would be for CATG to instruct WC Highways to do a review.
  6. Next steps:

 

  1. Reports on progress of proposals for:
    1. Beckhampton DB referred to min ref. 9 ii. and asked why Cllr Phillip Whitehead had said it would not be feasible to put hedging around the whole of the approach roads when several roundabouts in Swindon used big boards to slow traffic on approach to the roundabouts. [Dr MB said it was possible the reason was because national speed limit applied on approach to the Beckhampton roundabout]. Dr MB tabled the proposal for Beckhampton (See appendix 2 Beckhampton proposals for traffic management). Dr MB read out the proposed works and suggested order with rationale. In discussion members felt that both decreasing the speed limit and introducing splitter islands would make it safer for pedestrians crossing. Members also agreed that splitter islands would stop two cars overtaking each other (particularly on the roundabout) and that this was the cause of the majority of accidents aside from people speeding. AN pointed out there was a duty of care to motorists to ensure speeds were reduced on approach to the roundabout. AW pointed out that as per their design the flutes of the splitter islands would jut out into the roundabout and therefore works on this part of the scheme should be done altogether. Members agreed this would avoid the potentially dangerous situation of the road suddenly narrowing on the roundabout where only one splitter island had been implemented. In further discussion members agreed to include the possibility of removal of street lighting from the junction. Decision: Dr MB to amend the proposal document / update list of priorities and circulate by email. Members noted they would need to approach WC Highways to ascertain what APC might be able to do with regards to planting on verges.
    2. West Kennett Members tabled the proposal for West Kennett (See appendix 3 Proposed works to A4 at West Kennett). RM stated the local community had lobbied for the introduction of a 40 mph speed limit and now the main question was how much of the works as outlined in the overarching AWHS Transport Strategy could be requested. RM read out point’s a-g of the proposal and said two options were proposed: all the works or as a bare minimum only items a. narrowing the road and g. decreasing speed limit. RM asked how this proposal could be linked in to narrowing the rest of the A4. In discussion members felt they should ask for the big scheme by extending the solution as part of the WHS solution. Dr MB suggested traffic could be slowed through implementation of bicycle lanes from Overton Hill to Beckhampton. However, RM said this was unlikely to be appreciated as per the guidelines in the AWHS Transport Strategy and referred to p.18 and road widths: ‘…narrower carriageways…can also increase the chance of conflicts between vehicles and worsen provision for cyclists; therefore it must be fully assessed before being promoted’. AN pointed out that not many people would want to leave their bicycles at West Kennett due to the high risk of theft and therefore provision of cycle parking near the A4 was questionable. Decision: RM to amend the proposal document / update list of priorities and circulate by email.
    3. Avebury AN highlighted the ongoing safety issue of people in vehicles losing their way and having to turn around in Green Street and also people accelerating on seeing the national speed limit sign. In discussion members felt this could be remedied by the signage audit [and changing the road surface to e.g. cobbles?] AN offered to help with the WC signage and members felt it would be good to set up a small group of Community volunteers to assist WC.
    4. Trusloe Parking – AW stated he was now in a position to progress this and would initiate communication with the private land owners so that residents’ in Trusloe might benefit from an increased parking area. Members would also need to consider the 30mph extension on the A361 – deferred to next meeting
  2. Signage audit AW reported Mr Tim Lewis was currently carrying out a signage audit of the footpaths in the Parish and members agreed it would be good to invite Mr Lewis to the next Transport Group meeting to share his findings. AW to action. DB and AN reported the main NT car parking sign was obscured by bushes and as a result people were having difficulties finding the car park. Action: Clerk to contact WC Highways to ensure they cut back the vegetation. AW reported he had recently met with Henry Oliver (Director, NWD AONB) and the organisation was interested in working in partnership with Avebury.
  3. Planting of Beckhampton Roundabout Dr MB said the group could also consider planting bushes / low trees on the roundabout to reduce visibility over the roundabout and therefore reduce approach speeds. Members noted the grass on the roundabout had since been cut by WC.

Decision: It was unanimously agreed to refer the new proposals and requests including the signage audit to APC for consideration / action at its next meeting on the 7 July 2015. Proposals would then be sent to WC to provide the costing information and finally a village meeting arranged so that parishioners could consider the proposals informed by the costing detail.

– RM gave his apologies and left the meeting.

b.  Signage audit (continued…). Action: Clerk to check if APC has the power to contribute funds to signage audit. AW said Sarah Simmonds (WHS Officer) would be the best person to request this project on behalf of the Parish.

7.  Any other business: none

8.  Date of next meeting: tbc

9.  The meeting closed at 20:33

Appendices:

  1.  Amendments to 11 May 2015 draft meeting minutes
  2. Beckhampton proposals for traffic management
  3. Proposed works to A4 at West Kennett

The AWHS Transport Strategy was also tabled at the meeting.

11 May 2015 Transport Group : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council

Transport Group

Minutes of a meeting of the Transport Group of Avebury Parish Council held at the Social Centre, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF at 7pm on Monday 11th May 2015.

In these minutes APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, AONB for Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site.

Time Start: 19:05

  1. Transport Group members present: Dr Mike Bedford (Chairman of the Group and Vice-Chairman APC), Moya Brannon (item 7 to 10), David Brotheridge (member APC), Mike Daniel (member APC), Keith Howell (member APC), Rob Macaire, Angela Norman and Andrew Williamson (APC member). Members of the public present: none
  2. Introduction of new members: members welcomed Angela Norman (Green Street).
  3. Apologies for absence: Kate Fry, Stephen Stacey, Simon Vatcher and Peter Wilson.
  4. Declarations of interest: none
  5. Acceptance of minutes of 17 April: Mr Daniel requested the last words in the paragraph under item 6di be changed from ‘…double white lines in the Rawlins Park to Melbourne House area.’ to ‘…double white lines in the Rawlins Park to East Farm area.’ Further to this amendment, the minutes were unanimously agreed as an accurate record. Proposed by Mr Howell and seconded by Mr Daniel.
  6. Actions from minutes: a.   Report on meeting with Cllr Philip Whitehead, Wiltshire Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport:  Dr MB and AW reported that they had presented the WHS Transport Strategy to PW and that he had been very complimentary about it.  He had noted that public expenditure was constrained, and reinforced APC’s view that anything that was already in the Strategy would be far easier to get actioned. Dr MB read out a list of funding sources (see Appendix 1). Dr MB stated it might be possible to tackle the whole of the A4 project and put it forward to be funded by WC end of fiscal 2015-2016 budget. Dr MB said once members had identified priority projects the next step was for the Group to seek the support of local people at a public meeting and for APC adopt them.  APC would then forward them to Parvis Khansari (Associate Director Highways and Transport at WC) who would then arrange for staff to come back with estimate costings. It would also be useful to copy in Councillor Philip Whitehead. Dr MB confirmed that funding for repairs to footpath 22 would be coming from a WC footpath budget.
  7. Re-cap of Avebury Traffic Plan and WHS Transport Stategy developed over the past three years:
  1. Relevance of Avebury’s Parish Traffic Plan and WHS Transport Strategy: the meeting agreed that the main theme which had emerged as a priority for the community, across the whole area, was traffic speeds.  The Parish Traffic Plan and WHS Strategy both supported that.There was a discussion of how best to achieve lower speeds (Dr MB reported Cllr PW was not keen on putting up signs if they were not enforceable.  The Police would also resist new limits that they did not have the resources to enforce). AW said that both the Parish Plan and the WHS Strategy gave priority to reducing vehicle speeds by the use of ‘design speeds’.  While speed limits would be relevant in some areas, changing the design of roads could be more effective in changing driver behaviour.
  2. Design principles: extract from the Parish Traffic Plan tabled and see appendix 2.  Members also referred to Part 5 of the WHS Transport Strategy.
  3. Concept of ‘design speeds’ versus speed limits: in discussion members felt the majority of people adhered to speed limits but if the design was done correctly and combined with a reduced speed limit then the road would feel slower. Dr MB said speed limits would not get considered unless the road was also redesigned.

8.  Tactics:

      1. Most effective methods of securing action by Wiltshire Highways, and others: already covered.
      2. Funding sources: already covered.
      3. Maximising support at officer and councillor levels in Wiltshire Council: AW said it would be good to look for support from North Wessex Downs AONB, National Trust, UNESCO and others.

AN asked if it would be possible to put together a list of key people. AW suggested that Cllr PW would be an important point of contact in referring the Transport Group to the correct contacts at WC.

9.  Next steps:

a.  Consideration of draft proposal to the Community Area Transport Group to extend 30mph limit on Swindon Road northwards to Rutlands Farm: AW reported this had been endorsed by APC at a previous Council meeting on 5 May.  APC had agreed not to ask for additional requests outside the WHS Transport Strategy but to bring forward a second phase e.g. 40 mph buffer zone, at a later date if the extension of the 30mph limit was not effective. Transport Group members were satisfied with the decision.

b.  Develop proposals in greater detail for each hamlet – Avebury, Trusloe, Beckhampton, West Kennett: Dr MB stated it was a marriage of desire for WHS-wide speed limit with the possible. Dr MB said there might be first level projects that could be fed into different funding streams, e.g. CATG or the substantive fund, and second level projects that might require the largest funding.  Cllr PW had suggested that the Group should progress the latter, larger projects so that they would be ready for occasional and unpredictable large-scale releases of funds by Treasury.  These tended to occur in the first quarter of a calendar year.

 AW stated there were various projects already in hand such as parking in Trusloe that did not fall into the categories mentioned by Dr MB. AN asked how smaller projects would be delivered. AW said that the Community Area Transport Group covered most smaller projects.  He also gave the example of signage in Green Street and said this could be dealt with further in a signage audit.  He therefore recommended putting in motion the signage audit scheme. In discussion, members felt the initial two main focus areas should be West Kennett and Beckhampton.

(i) West Kennett          

Section 3.2_A4 West Kennett (AWHS Transport Strategy) tabled. RM said the priority for West Kennett would be to narrow the road. AW reported Cllr PW had said in order to slow traffic through West Kennett he had recommended narrowing the road before entry to the hamlet from the east and west on the A4, using a chicane design. RM stated phase one could be focussed on reducing speed limit by narrowing the road and putting in a footpath south of the A4 (to Gunsite Road). Phase two could be cycle parking, car parking, bus stop and any other footpath work. AW and Dr MB asked RM for the views of West Kennett residents on moving the bus stop into the layby. RM said there was concern that any new bus stop should not be directly outside the houses on the layby, as suggested by the sketch in the WHS Strategy, but moving it slightly up the layby and onto the island would resolve any concerns, and on that basis residents were supportive.   It might require a bus shelter and more funding would therefore be required, so residents would not want that to hold up the works to the road.   RM would review residents’ views again.

(ii)  Beckhampton

3.4_A4 Beckhampton (AWHS Transport Strategy) tabled. Dr MB reported Cllr PW had advised that putting hedging around the whole of the approach roads could result in reduced sightlines and consequent liability claims against Highways following accidents. In discussion Dr MB advised the Group to prioritise putting in splitter islands to the roundabout one at a time and recommended the first one should be implemented on the A361 Devizes road as this was the most dangerous area on approach to the roundabout and a request for the second one to be installed on the A4361 towards Trusloe. AW recommended setting up a community planting scheme for the roundabout and verges and members thought this was a good idea. Decisions deferred to next meeting. On street lighting at the junction, there was a case for it being retained as it was used by emergency vehicles and to warn drivers they were approaching a roundabout but, on the other hand, most local residents favoured it being removed.

(iii) Conclusion

Dr MB stated sections 3.1-3.5 of the AWHS Transport Strategy could be treated as one project (East Gateway / The Sanctuary, West Kennett, Kennet Valley – West Kennet Long Barrow / Silbury Hill, Beckampton and Western Gateway / Knoll). In discussion, members noted there was only one house at Silbury Hill but many walkers.  Sightlines were however good unlike those at the Sanctuary. Members felt they should not lump all the A4 schemes into a single project in discussions with Wiltshire Council, because the cost would probably be prohibitive and nothing would happen.   The group should initially focus on solutions for West Kennett and Beckhampton, without ruling out treating all of 3.1 – 3.5 as a single project in future if funding became available.  

c.  Signage improvements: members agreed APC should also press for this.

 

MB asked if it was feasible to get additional high trees planted on the Swindon Road. She said that Lime trees were extremely slow growing and alternative trees should be interspersed so that a quicker result might be achieved to reduce sight lines and slow traffic. In discussion members noted the current 30 mph speed limit did not stop all cars from overtaking and therefore additional tree plantings could support and improve the effectiveness of moving the 30 mph speed limit northwards. Members noted the area for planting was by the telephone exchange, on NT land on the west side of the A4361. AW asked MB to make a drawing of where she thought the trees should be planted. MB, MD and DB agreed to meet and draw a sketch plan.

Decision: RM and Dr MB to consult residents in West Kennett and Beckhampton to put together their proposals for the two main focus areas and then to request Wiltshire Council to provide estimates of relative costs. Members agreed the size of the two schemes and their location along the A4 corridor meant they could go in as one project for possible funding by the WC end of fiscal 2015-2016 budget. The signage audit scheme would be recommended to APC for action. In the meantime, MB would provide a sketch plan of proposed planting on A4361. Proposed by Mr Howell, seconded by Dr MB and carried unanimously.

10.  Any other business: none

11.  Date of next meeting: 7pm on Tuesday 9 June.

The meeting closed at 20:40

 

Appendices:

  1. List of funding sources

Sources of funding, in increasing order of funding ability

a. Local parishioners/collections and the Avebury Parish council itself.

b. CATG – up to 25k projects. Avebury has not had such an award for a while due to waiting for publication of WHS document so we are “due” for an allocation if the proposal is good enough.

c. Substantive schemes – available from the council for projects above £25ke.

d. Maintenance budget – any scheduled maintenance should and will be adjusted to take into account of modification of the roads that are in the plan and can be accommodated by scheduled maintenance works.

e.  National funding – often at end of fiscal year a potentially very large pot of money appears with very short notice (3 weeks) and is allocated to those with plans at hand which are costed and ready to go. This means that only pre-approved plans get such money. One action for the transport group would be to consider such a plan to deal with the high cost traffic calming ideas along the A4 from Overton hill to the racing stables at the Calne exit from the roundabout. If a plan is produced and ready to go then this could radically reduce the time likely needed to deliver the changes needed using fund sources aàd above.

f.  Leveraging WHS status with multiple commercial and Governmental/EU funds may be possible if the right emphasis is put on the specific project. One such route would be as above (e) to make evident that the application we are putting in is not just for the residents but also to 250,000 + visitors to a WHS site.

2.  Extract of Design Principles adopted in the Parish Traffic Plan:

In addressing the delicate balance between highways and special places such as Avebury and the surrounding WHS, our proposals seek to influence driver behaviour and traffic speeds by emphasizing a close relationship between highway design and details, and the specific context of each place and set of circumstances. To this end we aim to avoid reliance on standardised signs and markings, barriers and conventional traffic calming measures. Instead the proposals intend to alert drivers to the unique surroundings of the Parish of Avebury, and to ensure that, as far as possible, the highway forms an integral part of the settlements and the World Heritage Site. Legibility, low speeds and a reduction in highway intrusion underpin our approach. The design principles include:

  • careful attention to the entry points into the site, and into each settlement, to contrast the low-speed context of the villages and archaeological sites with the remainder of the highway,
  • strong emphasis on place-making at key locations to maintain driver awareness and lower speeds,
  • the use of contextually appropriate surface materials, verge details, minimal intrusive road markings and reductions in apparent carriageway widths to emphasize pedestrian activity and likely crossing points throughout the Parish, and
  • the use of carefully selected and appropriate materials and elements to clarify the vehicular boundaries between the visitor and residential areas of the Avebury village core.

Given the constraints on resources, the plan concentrates on a limited number of important focal points where improvements are necessary and where the combined efforts of Wiltshire Council, the local community and other stakeholders could develop sensitive and effective ways to minimise the impact of traffic and maintain the distinctive qualities of place on which Avebury relies.  [The Plan then proposes schemes for nine ‘Focal Points’ and the need for better signage. Eight of the Focal Points are the Red Lion/Green Street area, Avebury High Street, the Rawlins Park/Swindon Road area, NT main car park, Trusloe/Bray Street, Beckhampton, West Kennett and the four scheduled monuments along the A4.  The ninth ‘Focal Point’ addresses intermittent events such as summer solstice, and an appendix addresses the need for better signage.]

17 April 2015 Transport Group : Minutes

Avebury Parish Council

Transport Group

Minutes of a meeting of the Transport Group of Avebury Parish Council held at the Social Centre, High Street, Avebury SN8 1RF at 7pm on Friday 17th April 2015.

In these minutes APC stands for Avebury Parish Council, AWHS for Avebury World Heritage Site.

Time Start: 19:00

  1. Transport Group members present: Dr Mike Bedford (Chairman of the Group and Vice-Chairman APC), Moya Brannon, Mike Daniel (member APC), Keith Howell (member APC), Rob Macaire , Stephen Stacey and Andrew Williamson (APC member). Member of the public present: Pascale Stacey.
  2. Apologies for absence: David Brotheridge (member APC), Kate Fry, Simon Vatcher and Peter Wilson.
  3. Declarations of interest: none
  4. Welcome and introductions including a statement regarding what members wanted from the Transport group: Dr MB introduced himself as Chairman of the Transport Group. Dr MB: interested in controlling traffic, decreasing traffic speeds in Beckhampton. MD: protecting village, making it a safer environment, decreasing traffic speeds. AW: solving community and WHS issues (speeds, parking, congestion) as effectively as possible while using minimum interventions. MB: primary concern speed. RM: paper tabled with signatures from all households in West Kennett requesting lower speeds on A4. (See appendix 1). SS: solving parking issues but general concern for Avebury and requested an infrastructure that permitted daily life for those that lived there. PS: requested sign at end of Green Street (local traffic only or no through road). Too many drivers were getting lost and going down Green Street.
  5. Review of Terms of Reference of Transport Group: Members had reviewed the TOR (previously emailed). Dr MB stated the Group’s purpose was to develop priorities and then recommend to the Parish Council. Action: no changes were requested therefore document to be adopted by APC at next Council meeting.
  6. WHS Transport Strategy document and Avebury Parish Traffic Plan.

 

  1. Review of suggested criteria to rank schemes: Dr MB proposed the village would be broken down into four hamlets and low hanging fruit/low cost schemes to be put forward first. AW stated that APC had agreed that all schemes recommended for action by the Group must be in the plans.  He also read out APC’s suggested criteria for choosing priorities (See 2 Dec 2014 APC Minutes item 9b2.). RM urged caution regarding putting rankings on (i) low hanging fruit / instant fixes (ii) schemes that were a priority for the village. In discussion, members agreed they would like to see the projects broken down into bite size chunks starting with the minimum works that could possibly be carried out and the cost.  It was agreed later on in the meeting that due to complexity it would not be useful to rank schemes for the time being.
  2. Projects already completed and work on APC’s current ‘to do’ list:  AW read out a list that included:
    1. Planters in High Street: done
    2. Drop kerbs at Henge: NT still to action
    3. 30 mph extension on Swindon Road: deferred until WHS Strategy published
    4. Parking in Trusloe: in progress
    5. Beckhampton Stables crossing on A4: partly done; railings had been put up and paid for by the landowners
    6. ‘Shot-blasting’ road surface of Beckhapton roundabout: done
    7. Resurfacing of A361: done
    8. Planting on Beckhampton roundabout and verges to reduce speeds by restricting sightlines: APC had considered requesting a planting scheme in these areas. In the interim WC was currently considering an experimental scheme to defer mowing in 2015 to allow grass to grow.
  3. Members invited to present favoured schemes with rationale: Members selected Scheme 1.3 Encourage Slower Vehicle Speeds (AWHS Transport Strategy). It was agreed that the main priority was for vehicle speeds to be reduced. Example: extension of 30 mph limit along Swindon Road because children needed to be able to cross the road safely. Also considered but out of the scope of the project were additional tree plantings on the Swindon Road to help slow traffic by reducing sightlines. Dr MB said a 50mph speed limit across the WHS would send out a calmer message but this was not in the AWHS Transport Strategy Plan. Dr MB reported a possible crossing at Rawlins Park had been identified in the AWHS Plan but that this appeared also to be independent from the plan. Members recommended asking WC for preliminary designs or plans for a particular project but not detailed studies as the latter were far too expensive. RM gave an example of a WC cycle network project study that had cost £79K. Action: AW to email Transport Group members the original application for extending 30mph speed limit northwards on Swindon Road for comment and consideration at next Transport Group meeting.
  4. Review of proposals and consolidation: following preliminary discussion, members agreed the Transport Group should develop the following priorities in the four hamlets:BeckhamptonReduce vehicle speeds by installing splitter islands along A4, A4361 and A361 as shown in the WHS Transport Strategy.

    Avebury

    i. Reactivate the original request for extension of 30mph speed limit along Swindon Road and possibly add request for 40mph limit to East Farm and double white lines in the Rawlins Park to Melbourne House area.                                      ii. Request a sign to limit Green Street to local traffic.

West Kennett

Request Wiltshire Council to draw up a scheme and costing to reduce vehicle speeds by narrowing of the A4 and installing a 40mph limit.

Trusloe

  1. Continue to work with Wiltshire Council and Aster Housing to improve parking, and engage with private landowner at the Nursery Site.
  2. Reduce speeds on A4361 at Trusloe turning.

AW said Martin Cook (Area Engineer at WC Highways) would be available if requested to attend a future meeting and that he and Dr MB were arranging a meeting with Cllr Philip Whitehead (Cabinet Member for Highways and Transport).  AW was also likely to see Jane Scott (WC Leader) and Councillor Stuart Wheeler at the launch of the new WHS Management Plan in May and would be able to press for their support. Members noted there was a need to understand the processes better.

7.  Funding sources: members noted WC funding sources were:

  1. Community Area Transport Group
  2. Annual Maintenance Fund
  3. Substantive Fund (also part of Integrated Transport Fund).

8.  Any questions: RM asked for a date for the next meeting. Next APC Council meeting would be on the 5 May and a Transport Group Meeting was provisionally booked for 7pm on 11 May 2015.

9.  The meeting closed at 21:10

Appendix:

  1. Copy of paper with signatures from all households in West Kennett