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.