Blog Archives

Pothole Patrol Takes Action!

County_Council_Candidate_Labour_John_Taylor

Labours County Council candidate, John Taylor, is fed up with Potholes and decaying roads and is calling for more action.

Labours County Council candidate for the Talke and Red Street ward has pledged more action to tackle potholes that blight local roads.  Councillor John Taylor has this week set up a Pothole Patrol for Butt Lane, Talke and Red Street to ensure more people are reporting problems with local roads. 

John said: “Our roads are in a shocking state of disrepair and we need some action to improve the situation.  The local Pothole Patrol has been set up to make it easier for residents to report bad road surfaces to the council or their councillors”. 

“It’s important that your representatives are taking the fight to Staffordshire County Council and demanding that more cash is spent on road maintenance.  We are regularly promised more will be spent each year to sort out our decaying roads but so far we aren’t seeing any difference.  I will push the County Council to spend your money better and look at the whole way in which maintenance is carried out”. 

Using www.fixmystreet.com you can report potholes anonymously using an online map.  This facility then notifies the local council and informs them that a complaint has been made.  The council responsible then has a period of time to fix the pothole before the complainant is given another opportunity via email to update whether the council has fixed the problem.  Fix My Street has been very successful and local councillors encourage the public to use this online tool. 

Labour Councillors are also encouraging people to contact them to report potholes and road maintenance issues.  The Pothole Patrol structure will ensure everything reported will be logged and followed up if repairs are not carried out. 

You can call:

Butt Lane, Talke and Chesterton – John Taylor 01782 786227
Butt Lane – Kyle Robinson 07837905443 (or send a text)
Butt Lane – Sylvia Burgess 07906 337215 (or send a text)
Talke and Talke Pits – Dave Allport 07870 650248 (or send a text)
Talke and Talke Pits – Mike Stubbs 07500 091504 (or send a text)
Chesterton – Eddie Boden 01782 722248
Chesterton – Hilda Johnson 07598 118208 (or send a text)
Chesterton – Sandra Simpson 01782 564483

To contact Staffordshire Highways direct you can contact them using the methods listed below:

Phone: 0300 111 8000
Email:  highways@staffordshire.gov.uk
Online:  http://tinyurl.com/bjk2ckj

By working together we can ensure our roads are maintained to a high standard and at a standard we deserve!

Councillors ask for ‘avoid parking signs’

The_Avenue_Kidsgrove

Kidsgrove, The Avenue on an average day.

Motorists have told Labour councillors that they wouldn’t park on The Avenue if there was more parking in Kidsgrove Town centre.  On a walkabout last week councillors spoke to people who park their cars on The Avenue on a daily basis. 

It was discovered that some commuters parked their cars on this stretch of the road due to the lack of parking at Kidsgrove train station and not due to the £2 parking charge introduced in 2011 (although some had a moan about the charges).  One commuter furiously asked why the county council hadn’t opened up a new car park at the side of the train station with all the spare land available. This has been promised in the past.  I shook my head and told the gentleman he needed to contact his County Councillors who have access to officers who can push this forward. 

Residents have also said that some staff at the local primary school are forced to park on this road due to virtually no parking on their premises.  I do sympathise with the staff and feel they have little option to park anywhere else.   The school was never designed to accommodate a large amount of vehicles and the open space available is used as a playground for the children. 

Ravenswood care home has recently expanded to offer more places for the elderly.  This move has taken up more space that was originally used by visitors for parking.  It has been noted that carers working shifts have also been forced to use The Avenue to park their vehicles.  Was the lack of parking ever questioned by Newcastle Borough Councils planning committee when the extension was passed a few years ago? 

We took a stroll into the town centre to find that during midday the car parks in Kidsgrove were packed full.  Parking is mainly being used by shoppers and by people who are employed locally.  I do sympathise with local residents who have to put up with ever increasing traffic outside their front doors.  If vehicles are parked illegally Newcastle Borough Council parking wardens will take action and I have asked for this area to be targeted.  It has been pointed out that The Avenue does not have double yellow lines along it so people parking their cars aren’t actually breaking the law.  This is a matter of common sense and people should use the town centre car parks in the first instance to ensure safety of pedestrians, residents and vehicles passing through. 

Labour Councillors have asked the County Council to put up signs asking people to use car parks and not the highway.  The situation is constantly being monitored by highways officers and councillors are working to improve the situation. 

I have looked up the definition of ‘double parking’ and in this case we do not have the same problem:

“Most people think of cars which are illegally parked when they visualise double parking. In the first and often most pernicious sense, double parking refers to parallel parking alongside another car so that all or part of your vehicle is in the street. In addition to blocking the original, legally parked car in, the double parked vehicle will block part of the street and a bicycle lane, if one is present. In highly congested cities, double parking can be a serious problem, since it obstructs traffic”.

Many thanks

Councillor Kyle Robinson

Woodshutts Street Residents want one way

 

Woodshutts Street

This picture shows Woodshutts Street on an average day.

The results are in and residents of Woodshutts Street have voted overwhelmingly for their road to be made one way. A whopping 65% said they would be happy for the street to be made one way as soon as possible. Residents also added comments and wrote letters to offer more ideas on how to tackle parking, congestion and speeding.

Another 21% of those surveyed felt Woodshutts Street should be blocked off altogether. Many residents added comments saying it would be better to place concrete bollards at the end of the terraced houses just after the turning into Woodlands Avenue giving plenty of room for vehicle manoeuvre.

9% of residents called for permit parking. Although this was not an option on the survey I felt it needed adding to the results as 3 residents asked for this to be included as a possibility.

Finally 3% which equals to 1 resident asked that I (Councillors) do nothing. Many responded in their comments that doing nothing was absolutely not an option.

Woodshutts Street Survey Results

Results of survey: 21 Residents voted for one way, 7 residents voted for the street to be blocked off, 3 residents asked for permit parking and 1 resident asked for the council to do nothing and ignore the problems.

I think it would be fair to say I have been rather brave to take on this issue that many of those before me have tended to shy away from to avoid upsetting residents and local business.  In my opinion this has to be tackled sooner rather than later because I am concerned there could be fatalities on this stretch of road if we carry on with the way things are.  As many residents have pointed out, they have pushed for years for all sorts of different ways to reduce traffic but nothing ever seems to move forward.  On a regular basis vehicles are damaged and even written off because of collisions in the terraced part of Woodshutts Street. 

I would like to bring your attention to a plan that a resident has provided me with.  The gentleman is one of the residents calling for the blocking of Woodshutts Street but at a different point than previously suggested in the survey.  His idea does make sense but might not suit everyone.  Here is the plan below:

Woodshutts Street Block off Plan

As you can see from the plan this could be a possibility.

If this option was to be considered 90% of residents would need to agree with little opposition because Staffordshire Highways Authority have to go with a large majority view.  Under this plan Cul-De-Sac signs would be erected at the entrance of Woodshutts street from Congleton road. 

This will provide access to Woodlands Avenue/Pickwick place and also allow the terraced house dwellers to turn their cars around as this road is wider at this point as you can see on the sketch above. 

The traffic entering Woodshutts Street from Cedar Avenue would have two turning places, the bollards halfway up Woodshutts Street and Milstone Avenue.  This should suffice for residents in this area. 

So what happens next?

I would like to produce the one way proposals and the above plan to residents in another newsletter and a door knocking session.  This will take place in the new year, preferably the end of January.  Following this there will be a public meeting and I will be hoping residents attend to air their views.  As you can imagine this is a very difficult piece of case work for me and other Butt Lane Councillors so we want to reach a solution that suits the majority of residents.  I will ensure a Highways officer from Staffordshire County Council attends the meeting and also members of the joint parking committee at Newcastle Borough Council.  It would also help to involve Staffordshire Police who might be able to give us some supporting evidence for the proposals above so I shall invite PCSO Colin Stepney. 

Many thanks

Councillor Kyle Robinson