Rat-run rage.

I don’t know about the rest of the residents in this rat-run of a street but l have had enough!

Looking down our road during the morning rush.

My partner and l have lived on a narrow and dangerous road for eight years now and have watched the volume of traffic grow.

It’s a cut-through for people wanting to avoid the dreadfully-congested London Road and head up over Camden. It is the start of a route that brings misery to hundreds of others who live on streets not constructed to take such volume.

Here’s the crossroads. Traffic from the right has come off the A46 by pass and is heading down old Gloucester Road. Some is then turning into our road on its way to Camden. More traffic coming out of Bailbrook Lane.

When we first moved in we were told by neighbours of the fight that had already been going on for years to try and get a one-way system – or some sort of speed reduction – in place.

Not every wide vehicle takes notice of this sign.

In fact, one neighbour told us how bollards had only been put in place alongside the pavement after she and her child in a push chair had to jump into a hedge to avoid a car mounting the pavement.

Our road wasn’t built for this. Imagine how this would be without bollards lining the narrow pavement!

We daily see angry drivers confronting each other mid-way through our road. Traffic – coming either up the road or down it – won’t give way so there is often an angry stand off.

My partner’s refusal to let cars use our driveway as a turning point resulted in him getting an aerosol can of deodorant thrown at him from a car window. Great example from a driver who had children on the back seat of his BMW.

The ‘missile’ thrown at my partner!

People have grown so confrontational and violent these days.

We who live in this street are suffering.

At the top end of our road is a crossroads which empties cars from three directions into our narrow route-way.

Passings are not always as calm as this!

Cars park right up to the edge of our junction so destroying sight-lines and increasing the danger. B&NES promised white lines and nothing has happened.


Our road is shabby and pockmarked. It is an irony that a cut-de-sac on the Gloucester Road is due to be resurfaced and leads no-where!

A cul-de-sac can have new tarmac – why not a busy through road?

We want action now. We want some system to keep vehicles from parking up to the top junction and some speed limiting system on our road at top and bottom.

Like living on the M4!

Introducing a one-way system with Dead Mill Lane might be helpful but we don’t want a system that speeds up the cars.

B&NES must do more to cut the number of cars going through the city anyway. Be brave and take a lead.

Our road surface is a real mess and increased traffic is wearing it away even more quickly.

The Lambridge ward does not contain big roads yet has to funnel high volumes. It has dreadful pavements for pedestrians that have not seen a resurfacing for years.

Next May we elect new councillors. I will wait to see what action is taken before deciding where my vote goes .

The sign leading into Bailbrook Lane.

Also, B&NES Transport Department, come out and see what is happening to your road signs at the entrance to Bailbrook Lane. Almost obliterated by ivy!

And take a look at the damage a vehicle has caused to a bollard on the crossroads at the entrance to Bailbrook Lane. Someone could have been standing there!

A bollard has been flattened and the tarmac pavement lifted. Good job no one was standing there.


The ivy engulfing the signs leading into Bailbrook Lane has been cut back.


  1. Richard

    Time for road pricing? But pragmatically, we’ll only get it if there’s cross-party agreement.

    Keep up the good work.



  2. Louise Betts

    Comment: Hi Richard,

    I read your recent piece about Rat Run Rage with interest. It is so frustrating that there seems to be a lack of awareness and consideration of residential roads being exactly that, places where people live, and residents feel powerless to stop the invasion of the car in every aspect of their lives.

    I live on the other side of the city in East Twerton in a cul-de-sac but people seem to think it is a car park rather than a place where people live, children play, pedestrians walk or wheel (and need to use drop kerbs and pavements). When politely asking people not to park where it makes the road narrow and/or visibility poor or in a turning space I am often faced with a negative reaction.

    It seems to be a city wide problem!

    Anyway, I don’t know what the solution is but I am going to work on making a small stand with other neighbours to improve things and wish you luck with your campaign to improve road safety and quality of life in your street.

    Best wishes,


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