Let's Talk Central

Welcome to Let's Talk Central
What do you think of Central Bedfordshire? Tell us what you think
Welcome to Let's Talk Central
What do you think of Central Bedfordshire? Tell us what you think
Welcome to Let's Talk Central
What do you think of Central Bedfordshire? Tell us what you think
Welcome to Let's Talk Central
What do you think of Central Bedfordshire? Tell us what you think
Welcome to Let's Talk Central
What do you think of Central Bedfordshire? Tell us what you think

Have your say!

Saturday, August 21st, 2010
Let's Talk Central

We really want to know what  you think are the issues in Central Bedfordshire – so this is an open question for you to discuss the issues of the day with other users of Let’s Talk Central.

So, whether it’s to let everyone know about something happening in the area, a question you’d like to hear others answer, just post them below!

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171 Responses to “Have your say!”

  1. adf says:

    REMOVING the confusing clutter of street signs from roads will allow councils to compete for prizes, ministers announced yesterday.

    The best work by town halls to get rid of unnecessary signage will be rewarded at a ceremony in June, Patrick McLoughlin, the Transport Secretary, said. The awards are part of a drive to cut the number of signs spoiling towns, cities and the countryside.

    Many local authorities are making good progress in getting rid of clutter from their roads, but the Government wants to see more action being taken to dispense with old and confusing signs.

    Mr McLoughlin said: “Pointless signs blot our landscape, confuse motorists and are expensive to maintain.
    At last – from a tabloid

    “This new award is about recognising and showcasing the good work being done by local authorities across the country, and I urge councils who are taking action to tackle this problem to put themselves forward.

    “I want these examples to inspire other councils to improve their streets and public spaces.” Entering for an award is open to councils in England who can demonstrate having taken steps to make roads clutter-free.

    The removal of barriers and unnecessary markings from Kensington High Street, in west London, resulted in a 47 per cent reduction in accidents.

    Local councils please take note.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 5 Thumb down 0

    • No more signs says:

      I’ve been meaning to tell CBC re this mad sign. Going south on the A6, after the Streatley roundabout, there is a road sign showing a Right Turn. However, a couple of hundred yards further on, there is a sign showing that right turns are banned – and rightly so, because they would be dangerous. Please would CBC/Amey remove the first sign, showing a right turn, as it is confusing, and could be dangerous.

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      • Matthew Green says:

        Hi, if you report this to our Highways team here http://ow.ly/josIs they’ll be able to look into it and you’ll get a reference number so you can track the progress of your request. MG

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  2. No more Gentrifaction says:

    Several years ago, Mid Beds District Council, the forerunner to CBC, gentrified/ruined the centres of both Biggleswade and Shefford. There had been a vibrant market in Shefford, which due to the disruption was nearly killed off. Traders came back, but fewer of them. A fortune was spent by the Council on fancy paving stones on the footway and blue posts alongside the edges of the footway. Worst of all, raised area were put in at various places across the highway. The raised tables aren’t actually quite as bad as they look, as it is possible to drive over them at 20 mph, the posted speed limit. Unfortunately, especially at the traffic lights, many drivers go over them too slowly, resulting in tailbacks at the lights, even during quieter traffic periods, not helped by poor timing of the lights. This is a plea that, when the raised tables start to deteriorate, which they most certainly will, that they are removed, and the carriageway resurfaced at grade. The footways can have dropped kerbs again, just like it used to be, to cater for the less ambulant.

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  3. No more Road Rage says:

    I think that the new “Traffic Calming” measures in Flitton/Greenfield must have now been in place for at least a couple of years. If anyone wants to see how badly such schemes, including chicanes and altering T junctions to change the priority make the roads less safe and encourage drivers to go faster, to get through before oncoming traffic, work, then this is the place to go. Please can we ask CBC not to spend anymore of public monies (nor to use developer provided funding where available), for these contributions to road rage. In poor weather, in the dark, the edges of the protruding kerbs can be difficult to see, and they are just a pointless piece of road engineering. There are no speed bumps at Flitton/Greenfield (thankfully) but where they are located it is often not possible to travel over them at the posted speed limit. If CBC want to reduce speed limits, they should do it publicly by consulting, not secretly by installing humps.

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  4. adf says:

    I wholly agree with the comment above – ….”the computer assumes drivers behave as they should do. Many motorists are not “model” drivers”.

    Like the road surfaces the driving and observancy skills are deteriorating at a very noticeable rate.

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 9 Thumb down 1

  5. Billy says:

    Hi, why has the roundabout adjacent to the entrance to Asda on Court Drive Dunstable been made so small? Lets not even go there with the kidney shaped lunacy by the college. It is clearly apparent that drivers have driven across the mud in the centre of the roundabout because it’s so narrow? Not everyone drives a G Whizz car! So my question is, WHY on gods earth has someone now encased it with concrete blocks! I know this is to deter the harmless, taxpaying motorist from driving across the miniature, poorly developed, mindless roundabout, designed by smurfs but when an inexperienced driver, young mum in a people carrier or elderly driver hits one of the concrete blocks who do they sue when their vehicle gets damaged? Why not crazy pave or concrete over the mud? Use some common sense please!

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    • Matthew Green says:

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 6

      • Billy says:

        Interesting Matt, what type of computer software was used to ascertain a safe approach to a narrow roundabout?

        Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 1

      • Eila says:

        I think the problem is that the computer assumes drivers behave as they should do. Many motorists are not “model” drivers.

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        • Computer models never (hardly ever) work says:

          Councils like using computer models, because they use them to show people are wrong. An example is where Luton BC used one for traffic light timings and bus lanes outside the Cinema by St George’s Square,. The road layout, complete with yellow box junction, has never worked properly – I know this in Luton, not in CBC’s area, but shows that other Councils use Road Computer modelling as an emotional crutch.

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    • Eila says:

      I understand the concept, but if a pedestrian walks across a courtesy crossing with confidence and a driver (who quite possibly is not adhering to the speed limit)hits one, the consequences are not too good! However if the pedestrian is injured on a zebra crossing I assume they have more protection from the law?

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      • Eila says:

        No one seems to have replied to my post as to whether a pedestrian has legal protection on a zebra or other crossing which they will not have if injured on the courtesy crossing…

        Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

        • Matthew Green says:

          Hi Eila, courtesy crossings have no legal status but act as a guide to pedestrians, like all other uncontrolled crossings. Unlike controlled crossings such as Pelicans, Puffins and Zebras, uncontrolled crossings have no traffic signals in which vehicles have to respond to. Therefore the pedestrian does not have priority over vehicular traffic and must make a decision about whether it is safe to cross.

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  6. Eila says:

    Over the last 3 years I have reported 6 vehicles, including a people carrier, which have to my knowledge gone into the ditch on the corner of Dunstable Road and Millfield Lane (after what was the garden centre) coming from Caddington towards Dunstable. One of which was mine worth £3.500 which was written off as as although not travelling fast if there is black ice on that bend your vehicle skates over the little grass verge and falls into the ditch (there are currently track marks where some other poor driver has done it recently). The local paper has done an article on it, and 3 Counties Radio had me on speaking about it. The Highways Department says its on the salting route and if I notice it is icy can I please inform them! What I originally suggested was a barrier on the corner, since then I have suggested kerbing but am getting no where. It has also occurred to me that perhaps just making the verge higher would stop vehicles toppling into the ditch as I am convinced one day there will be a serious accident if not a fatality there! Also can I encourage anyone who falls foul of that corner to report it as there must be far more incidents than the ones I have reported!

    Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

    • Eila says:

      Thank you for putting an “Ice” sign on the bend on Dunstable Road in Caddington when it was like an icerink. At least a step in the right direction!

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  7. Eila says:

    I still feel there issues with the new road layout on court drive. What’s wrong with an old fashioned zebra crossing rather than a “courtesy” crossings which are not that obvious especially if you do not know the area (do they exist in the highway code?). I still think a central white line is needed and the bus lane made more obvious i.e coloured red. I find that psychologically as I have walked across the bus lane I only expect traffic to come from my left and have to remember the traffic is coming from both directions. Especially worse in the dark.

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    • Wider Roads says:

      The problem with bus lanes, is that they are a waste of resources – they carry hardly any traffic (buses) which means that other traffic is compressed into what has become a narrower highway. It wouldn’t be so bad if bus operators paid to be able to have their own, almost private, roads. In 100 years time, when archaeologists look back at our roads, they are going to think we were mad for using so much road space for so few vehicles. Not everyone has the luxury of being able to travel on buses, they have to go roughly were you are goping from and to, to be any use, and most don’t – meaning people have to spend their own money on transport – and then find that they can’t use a good ptopoortion of the carriageway width – madness!!

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 0

    • James says:

      I could not agree more. This shared space is almost comical now. It says on their website ‘An enhanced street scene – different colour gravel finishes on the highway to define different areas’…..that would be a start. It is just black. There are also no white lines at the new junction with Court Drive and Kingsway. The times I have seen people not stop at this junction since Christmas is worrying. Every where else in the UK has a give way signs and ‘old fashioned’ white lines at junctions to indicate right of way. I am all for a shared space but at least have one traffic lit crossing next to Asda that leads to the towns busiest leisure complex and more importantly playground where children often are. If it is a shared space does that mean pedestrians can walk freely down the centre of the road and cars can drive on the pavement? Surely kerbs are there as a barrier to make careless drivers aware of when they have left the roadway. The courtesy crossing at the bend from Asda to Grove Park / House must be nearly 25 metres or the equivalent of walking across one side of the carriageway of the motorway! At least on a motorway you only have to look one way….on this one it is right, right, left! I don;t know about anyone else but being on a ‘pavement’ up on a kerb is invisibly reassuring. The roundabout and road from Asda towards the college is indeed a shared space as most drivers heading towards the college are on the wrong side of the road unless being a shared spaced there is no such thing. At least Central Beds / Amey put the coloured gravel in that your web site has boasted for months and stop putting pointless decorative stones around a one tree roundabout.

      Well-loved. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 11 Thumb down 0

      • Eila says:

        Hear, Hear! My point being its may be OK sharing the space, but if the motorist gets it wrong, it is obvious that the pedestrian comes out worst.

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    • Matthew Green says:

      Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

      Poorly-rated. Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 6

      • James says:

        This is a typical reply from an local authority. Reduce the dominance of cars next to a superstore, a leisure centre, a theatre and a college with large car parks…..please it is almost insulting. Clearly people using this shared space have a different experiences than your research suggests. They are not confident driving or walking in/on it. The lack of kerbs, markings, coloured tarmac (that your web site states it will have but you always fail to comment on)and the lack of markings at one junction confuse all. It does not look safe, the courtesy crossings are too long especially for the older and much younger generation who cannot walk as quickly as some. Despite having, as far as I can see and hear, received wide spread criticism, it has taken too long, caused and is still causing issues to a lot of people. The reported accidents seem high for a stretch of road / shared space that is designed at reducing motorised traffic speeds that has only been open a short period of time. Act on the websites promise of at least coloured tarmac areas and at least a few white lines or cats eyes on the road aspect for cars to know what part they should stick too. Admit there could be improvements and actually put it too a publicised web vote and end the local scepticism.
        Can you also tell me where the other shared spaces are in the UK that you /they / the planners got their research from. I work around the UK and have yet to come across a similar scheme.

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        • Karen Aspinall says:

          Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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        • Eila says:

          I agree with the above, the courtesy crossings would be shorter if they actually went straight across the road rather than at a diagonal. I still have not had an answer as to why there is not a zebra crossing and whether a pedestrian has more legal protection if injured by a motorist on a proper crossing rather than a “courtesy” one? Surely coloured tarmac and some white lines are a fairly inexpensive common sense measure…….

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

          • Matthew Green says:

            Hi Eila, I’ve replied to this question on your post further up the page.

            Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

    • Eila says:

      Do we have statistics on accidents yet? Many people have told me they have seen near misses with pedestrians having to dodge traffic on the new layout.

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      • Matthew Green says:

        Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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        • Eila says:

          Thanks Matthew, these are the recorded accidents, i suspect some go unrecorded. As I have no knowledge of the norm, can you tell me is this considered to be usual or is this a large or small number for the stretch of road please?

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    • Eila says:

      Are there any statistics on accidents on the new layout please? I hear reports of near misses where pedestrians have had to dodge traffic.

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  8. alfie says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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