This consultation concerns routes for children going to the following schools:
University College Junior School, Hampstead Parochial Primary School, New End Primary School & Christ Church Primary School.
We have already heard from Bob Speller, the keeper of Hampstead Parochial School concerning this scheme. He says:
I am the school keeper at Hampstead Parochial school and would like some advice on how to persuade the council that the safe route to school they are planning for our group of primary schools in Hampstead is in fact the opposite.It consists almost solely of pavement build outs making crossing the road a little more dangerous for pedestrians and extremely dangerous for
cyclists.The green travel plans submitted by the schools were not considered. At our school, Fitzjohns and Christchurch 60% of the children if allowed to choose how they travel to school would cycle. They are by far the most pro cycling part of the community and the most restrained from doing so.We have many parents who cycle with their children to school and are very pro cycling maybe we could get something going between the school and C.C.C.
The proposals consist of suggested pedestrian improvements at six different locations:
- The two pedestrian crossings in Heath Street to the north of Hampstead Station are to be raised to form flat topped speed tables – the existing crossings have a double kerb on the west side. I believe that this proposal is good.
- Proposals for dropped kerbs and pavement build-outs at the junction of Willow Road with Well Walk, Gayton Road, Flask Walk and New End Square. Traffic calming measures have already been applied in this area, effectively preventing through traffic from using Willow Road as an alternative to East Heath Road. I spent a little time here mid morning and found there was not much traffic – is it heavier at the times children travel to school?
The features in these proposals that will reduce the road widths are:
i) a proposed build-out on the corner of Willow Road/Gayton Road to enhance visibility down Willow Road.
ii) a pavement widening on the corner of Flask Walk/Willow Road (it is currently very narrow)
iii) widening of the island at end of Well Walk
I am not convinced that (i) is needed, but I personally do not believe that any of them would make life any more difficult for cyclists because the small amount of traffic is slow. However I would like to have comments on this from others who know the area better.
The council also propose to write no entry on the road to enforce the rule that people cannot drive straight across from New End Square to Willow Road – sounds a good idea.
- A pavement widening on Frognal Lane opposite the end of Chesterfield Gardens. The driving styles in Frognal Lane appear to be very dangerous for everyone concerned. I believe that the introduction of a 20 mph limit here would be the best safety measure. The proposed localised pavement widening could be a pinch-point for cyclists – should we object or request a speed table instead?
- South End Green. Move the existing zebra crossing on South End Road a little closer to South End Green, build out the kerbs and improve the central island. Although the new position seems to be an improvement, cyclists will be forced into the narrow space between the kerb and central island. I would like to suggest that they build the crossing on a raised flat topped speed table instead.
- Dropped kerbs and tactile paving at all junctions of Redington Road between Heath Drive/ Redington Gardens and Frognal. I have not inspected this one – has anyone that knows the road any comments?
- Junction of Holly Bush Vale and Heath Street outside Hampstead Parochial School – dropped kerbs and tactile paving and School Keep Clear sign. These all sound OK to me.
Safer Routes to School – Hampstead Area
University College Junior School, Hampstead Parochial Primary School, New End Primary School & Christ Church Primary School
As part of Camden Council’s policy to reduce casualties and to encourage parents and children to walk and cycle to and from school, the Council is proposing to introduce a number of Safer Routes to School schemes throughout the Borough. This is to provide a consistent level of safety features in the roads surrounding the schools and to minimise the risk of accidents involving child pedestrians. The four schools above and the surrounding roads were identified for improvement as part of this initiative and a grant from Transport for London has been provided for this work for the next financial year (2004/05).
The aims of the initiative are as follows:
- To provide a safer environment for children and parents, to encourage more walking and cycling to and from school.
- To improve school child safety outside the school entrance.
- To improve pedestrian safety generally in the area.
- To introduce a School Safety Zone encouraging drivers to take due care and
attention when in the area surrounding the school.
- To improve the general environment in the area.
Consultation has been undertaken with children at the schools to find out their safety concerns about their journeys to and from school. The Council has studied the consultation results and a number of measures have been proposed to address these concerns. The proposed measures are shown in detail inside this leaflet.
The Council would be pleased to hear your views on the proposed measures and details on how to respond to this consultation are given on the back page of this leaflet.
Consultation: Safer Routes to School Hampstead Area – response
Camden Cycling Campaign (CCC) understands that one the aims of this initiative is to encourage more cycling between school and home. We are therefore disappointed that the proposals do not include anything that is designed specifically to benefit cyclists.
We are pleased to see that efforts have been made to improve conditions for pedestrians. In the cases where these conflict with cyclist safety, we will attempt to suggest alternatives.
We note that there is a strong contrast between the two residential areas concerned: the area around the Well Walk/ Willow Road junction has been subjected to effective traffic calming measures, whereas the area surrounding Frognal Lane and Reddington Road appears to be in need of traffic calming. We believe that a 20 mph speed limit in the latter area would be a very effective move towards making walking and cycling safer for children.
We now comment on four of the six proposals:
- The two pedestrian crossings in Heath Street to the north of Hampstead Station. CCC supports the proposal to raise the crossings to form flat topped speed tables.
- Junction of Willow Road with Well Walk, Gayton Road, Flask Walk and New End Square. The proposed build-out on the corner of Willow Road/Gayton Road will reduce the road width and could make the junction more difficult for inexperienced cyclists – CCC objects to this because the visibility down Willow Road is good without it.
- Pavement widening on Frognal Lane opposite the end of Chesterfield Gardens. The driving styles in Frognal Lane appear to be very dangerous for everyone concerned. As mentioned above, we believe that the introduction of a 20 mph limit here would be the best safety measure. The proposed localised pavement widening could be a pinch-point for cyclists. For this reason we suggest that a raised flat-topped speed table should be used instead – it will have the additional benefit of reducing speeds at the approach to the crossing.
- South End Green. The new position for the zebra crossing appears to be an improvement. But cyclists may be squeezed by cars in the narrow space between the kerb and central island. CCC requests that the crossing be built on a raised flat-topped speed table instead.