Would a walk to school zone ease the jams?

Would a walk to school zone ease the jams?

A 500 metre wide zone around local schools – in which children are persuaded to walk or cycle to school – is just one idea being put forward to ease the traffic effect caused by so many vehicles transporting youngsters to both state and private Bath schools in the east of the city.

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London Road traffic

 

Transition Larkhall are involved in a a year-long study investigating – amongst other things – how parents take their children to school and why they choose to travel that way.

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Deadmill Lane is one of the roads surveyed.

 In conjunction with the University of Bath and the South West Foundation, this local community body – part of a world-wide transition movement which is working towards a post-oil economy –  surveyed traffic on 4 successive Mondays between 7.00am and 10.00am, at the Gloucester/London Road junction and on Dead Mill lane.

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Transition Larkhall have held two local meetings to explain to the community the results of the survey.

The Study Coordinator – Joanna Wright – told Bath Newseum what they had discovered.

You can read a full report of the survey as it was presented to the West of England Joint Transport Study Consultation via http://transitionlarkhall.uk/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/West-of-England-Transport-Consultation.pdf

There’s more information – via Transition Bath – on http://transitionbath.org/transition-larkhall-analysis-show-50-baths-rush-hour-traffic-can-attributed-schools/

 

Classic look to Warminster Road

Classic look to Warminster Road

The show home won’t be ready to view until July, but that hasn’t stopped potential customers at one Bath building site from already liking what they see.

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The Holburne Park development on the Warminster Road.

Though it’s only meant to be a temporary structure, the sales office in front of the new Holburne Park development on the Warminster Road is so striking – with its classical facade – that it’s been getting offers too.

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The ‘Marketing Pavilion’ at Holburne Park.

This former MOD site – which overlooks the city – was purchased by HardRock Developments Ltd and planning permission given for a 250 strong mixture of houses and apartments.

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Guests at this development site launch get a chance to view a three dimensional model of the proposed layout.

Bath Newseum was invited along to view the plans and construction underway.

There was time to catch up on too on the history of this site  from Savills Director Vicky Dudbridge. It’s her estate agency that will be handling sales at Holburne Park.

 

 

One week to go to Metro Mayor election

One week to go to Metro Mayor election

With a week before polls open in the first ever West of England Combined Authority Mayoral Election, registered voters in Bath and North East Somerset are being reminded to have their say on Thursday 4th May.

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Over 680,000 registered voters across the region will have the chance to choose their candidate to become the first Mayor of the West of England via postal votes or at polling stations when they open at 7am on 4th May.

The West of England devolution deal, worth £1 billion, brings powers and money from national Government with the ability to make local decisions about spatial planning for the region (including where new homes are planned and where investment in new services is needed to support their development), adult education and skills, employment and regional transport.

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Maria Lucas, Local Returning Officer for Bath & North East Somerset Council, said: “The 4th May election will give residents in Bath and North East Somerset the chance to make their choice on who will become the first West of England Combined Authority Mayor. I urge all eligible registered voters in the region to exercise their democratic right to vote and cast their ballot on 4th May.”

A booklet has been produced with useful information about the West of England Combined Authority, the mayoral election and the supplementary voting system, and statements from the candidates standing in this election. All registered voters have been sent a paper copy of this booklet as required by law*. An online version can be found at www.wevote.org.uk.

Polling stations will open at 7am on Thursday 4th May and close at 10pm. Voters are urged to check their poll cards for the address of their polling station and allow time to cast their vote.

British citizens, Commonwealth citizens and citizens of the Republic of Ireland, Cyprus and Malta who are registered to vote in the West of England Combined Authority Mayoral Election are also registered to vote in the UK Parliamentary General Election on 8th June. Residents who are not already registered to vote should visit www.gov.uk/register-to-vote to register online. The deadline to register to vote in the UK Parliamentary General Election on 8th June is midnight on 22nd May. It is now too late to register to vote in the West of England Mayoral election. 

* One booklet must be distributed to each person entitled to vote at the election. This booklet has been produced in accordance with The Combined Authorities (Mayoral Elections) Order 2017.

For information:

Supplementary Voting System

This election will use the supplementary voting system. Voters will have two votes – one for their first choice candidate and another for their second choice candidate. The ballot paper will list all of the candidates in alphabetical order with two columns next to the names. To select their first choice candidate, voters will mark an “x” in the first column and, should they wish to, an “x” in the second column next to the name of their second choice candidate.

The first choices are then counted and if one candidate has 50 percent of the vote or more, they are declared the winner. If no one candidate has 50 percent of the vote or more, the two candidates with the most first choice votes will remain in the election and the others will be eliminated. The ballot papers for the eliminated candidates are then checked and any second choice votes for the remaining two candidates are added to their first round totals. The candidate with the most overall votes wins.

 

Green shoots from Sainsbury’s

Green shoots from Sainsbury’s

Seems to be a Sainsbury’s week – with apologies to all the other supermarkets in Bath –  but the Green Park sited store has been in the spotlight for two reasons.

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The man in the orange jacket is rigging up the lights.

The first is the re-vamped pedestrian bridge which – with concerns about the River Avon beneath it expressed to Bath Newseum – now bears warning signs at either end.

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The warning sign.

Today (Wednesday, April 26th) l discovered electricians adding lighting to the barriers to ensure people can cross safely in the dark.

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Connecting up the wiring.

Meanwhile there is good news about the dead sapling at the station end of the store.

I have several times wondered whether anyone would replace it with a living specimen.

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The dead tree outside Sainsbury’s at Green Park.

Now comes the following statement from Sainsbury’s press office…

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We will wait and see.

Longer Xmas Market proposed and new locations.

Longer Xmas Market proposed and new locations.

Work in Abbey Courtyard – as part of Bath Abbey’s Footprint Project – and emergency repairs in York Street – are going to affect the layout of this year’s Christmas Market which will be looking to expand to other parts of the city.

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Work underway on the Abbey Courtyard side .

It is also hoping to get planning permission from B&NES to trial  an extension to its normal running time.

Emma Frayling – Communications Manager for Bath Tourism Plus – who organise the market – told Bath Newseum: ” Yes, we are hoping to extend the market to 25 days as a trial for one year and we are in the process of submitting a planning application to this effect.

Because of the Abbey Footprint we won’t have Kingston Parade and are looking at spreading the footprint further encouraging visitors to explore more of Bath. This will be achieved by relocating stalls to Southgate Street, Union Square and Hot Bath Street.

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A scene from the annual Christmas Market.

We hope that the extension to 25 days will help ease congestion by giving visitors extra time to come. We are also planning lots of fringe events and activities for families in Walcot Street, Kingsmead Square and Queen Square.

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Our 2016 survey concluded that £16 million was spent in the city when the market was operational so the event is important to the economy of the city.

If any stallholders have any direct questions they can call the events team on 01225 322 436 or email Christmas_market@bathtourism.co.uk “

A bridge of signs.

A bridge of signs.

Sainsbury’s at Green Park have remodelled the pedestrian walkway across the River Avon onto their supermarket site.

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The remodelled pedestrian bridge.

The tatty curved cover has been removed and the walkway tarted up with paint and a slightly raised side rail.

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Are the side barriers high enough?

Bearing in mind the number of people who have drowned in this river in recent years l contacted Sainsbury’s Press Office to ask if the company was satisfied with the height of the newly modified guard-rail – especially as one witness had seen youngsters actually climbing on top of it.

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My query was passed on for dealing with several weeks ago. l have heard nothing.

So l was interested to see that at least warning signs have been erected to make people aware of what they are crossing at this point.

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The warning sign.

Elsewhere in the city do mind how you go if using the pathway which leads to the side entrance to Waitrose. A portion of a recently installed set of steps has failed and will need repairing.

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The pathway that leads to the side entrance to Waitrose.

Maybe they’ll consider dismantling the rest of these stairs and putting in a ramp for the disable and for cyclists to push their bikes up to the stands installed for them.

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The broken stairway in close up.

Something that should have been put in – in the first place.

 

Cycle race guaranteed bumpy finish!

Cycle race guaranteed bumpy finish!

There’s a certain irony in the fact that Bath is hosting the first ever Saturday night stage of The Tour Series and the Matrix Fitness Women’s Grand Prix with a brand new city centre route which starts and finishes on Great Pulteney Street.

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The street is lined with parking restriction notices warning of the no parking decree affecting the grand avenue on May 20th. Not often cars make way for bikes!

I am just a humble local cyclist who uses this grand Georgian terrace-lined route into town as l emerge from Sydney Gardens and the canal towpath.

As a regular man-on-two-wheels l can tell you the road surface is in a real mess and bike riders in particular feel every bump.

Whilst the professionals will speed over this lunar crater-like surface at a much greater speed than l ever could, l wonder whether B&NES is feeling just a tad embarrassed about its condition.

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Cracks and craters line Great Pulteney Street.

I mean bone-shakers are supposed to be a thing of the past but not in Great Pulteney Street. Just be careful you don’t bite your tongues you lovely ultra-fit racers.

There are other events on Saturday, May 20th which, according to B&NES, will aim ‘ to encourage as many people as possible to choose cycling as either a leisure activity or as a way of commuting to work in Bath and North East Somerset’.

I think that will depend on decent road surfaces and properly designated areas for us cyclists to use all year round – not just on May 20th when many will turn out to cheer that flash of blurred colourful lycra as these cycling supremos wizz past.

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Maybe we should start giving our road craters names?

The Tour Series starts in Worcestershire on May 9, and finishes on May 29 in Stevenage.

Highlights of every round will be shown on ITV4, with programmes also available on demand via the ITV Hub.

More information can be found for all cycling events  in and around Bath on May 20th via  www.bathnes.gov.uk/tourseries

You can follow details of the Bath Stage of the Tour Series and the Sportive on Facebook Love 2 Cycle or Twitter @Love2cyclebath #TourBath #love2cyclesportive