Councillors’ Report October 2020

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/new-national-restrictions-from-5-november

Above link , latest Covid 19 Lockdown details.
Councillors’ Report October 2020As Covid restrictions still oblige us to keep our Public Forums in stasis , your local Ward Councillors will continue to send out our quarterly reports by e-mail to keep in touch…….
THE HOT TOPIC – EXPERIMENTAL ROAD TRAFFIC RESTRICTION ORDERS ( ETROs ) :

TO RECAP
Victoria Park Road – “Experimental Traffic Restriction Order”Emergency measures to support Active Travel are being introduced across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole funded by the Government’s Emergency Active Travel Funding.
Prioritising walking and cycling also helps us to contribute towards tackling the council’s declared climate emergency and to enable people to make journeys to work, school, and for leisure, by bicycle instead of using cars or public transport as contained in the Local Transport Plan.

Details of the scheme We are introducing an Experimental Traffic Regulation Order (ETRO) to create a low traffic neighbourhood in Victoria Park. An experimental junction closure will be implemented on Victoria Park Road, between the junctions with Oates Road and Namu Road, to reduce through traffic and create a safer environment for people to cycle and walk through the area.

The ETRO can run for up to 18 months, with a review of the changes planned for early 2021. The works are planned to be implemented the week commencing 17 August 2020.

  • The closure will be carried out using bollards and timber planters, along with appropriate signage.  
  • The closure applies to motorised traffic only, so people will still be able to walk and cycle through. 
  • Access to properties will be maintained and the scheme will not include the full pedestrianisation of streets.  
  • There will be no loss of parking spaces.

From your Councillors :
This scheme was precipitately installed to meet Conservative Government anti-Covid measures
funding parameters’ but most local Councillors across the BCP Council area had little if any warning as these schemes were ‘rolled out’. Many were not implemented or cancelled after objections from not only Ward Councillors but from Residents’ Associations, major business stakeholders and trade bodies. For those who read the ECHO, this whole issue will be well known to you.

The whole subject of “Covid 19 Active Travel Measures” has National Press coverage ( Daily Mail 24.10.2020, for example ).

BCP Council ETROs have been implemented on Evening Hill in Poole, Poole Park (Keyhole Bridge) and Leven Avenue for example. The latter two have been cancelled.

The WWW ETRO in Victoria Park Road will continue to the first six month point for full assessment with the local Ward Councillors’ agreement but certainly we have been feeding back assiduously the Residents’ comments and it is felt that those in favour do not (as directly communicated to us) find themselves in the majority BUT the Council’s Consultation has had numerous direct comments about the scheme which, at this point, local Ward Councillors are not privy to.
WWW Ward Councillors HAVE kept a Dossier of our directly-received contributions to the debate and these have and will be further shared with the Highways Portfolio Holder ( now changed from the PFH who initially held that role at the point of inception and instigation as far back as June 2020 ) and all the senior Highways Officers and the Covid Distancing Assistant Travel Engineer who is overseeing the Consultation. Some Residents are in direct dialogue with him.
(Our WWW ETRO DOSSIER is available by e-mail for those who would like to read its 30+ pages.)

Whilst Moordown St John’s church and school were not consulted prior to the scheme being installed (and nor indeed were the Bournemouth Blind Society) none have raised objections as yet with the school and its Governors, with whom the Councillors are in contact with, are not against the scheme. The school has staggered its start times (indeed prior to the ETRO) so some aspects of congestion have been assuaged already.

It has though been of concern to the Ward Councillors that certain roads and certain residents have immediately had to endure challenging and at times ‘deemed dangerous’ traffic movements and regular observations by ward Councillors at the junction in question has seen some alarming manoeuvres , some at what could be called ‘unnecessary speed’ and perhaps even without ‘due care’. These have all been fed back to BCP Officers responsible for the scheme.

Please encourage all who travel in this area to feed into the debate, via your Ward Councillors and through the Council’s web site link:

https://www.bcpcouncil.gov.uk/Council-and-Democratic/Consultation-And-Research/Consultations/Victoria-Park-Road.aspx

Formal comments

If you wish to formally object to or support the proposed Order, please send your comments by 21 February 2021 to:

Please include the reference ‘ETRO/3’, your name and address and specify the grounds for your support or objection in your response.
Any representations received may be made public. Written objections and support will be considered by the council before deciding whether or not to make the experimental measures permanent.

Next Steps
We intend to review the measure in early 2021.  A full report on the findings and outcomes of the ETRO will be presented to the Council’s Cabinet, who will make a decision on whether the changes should be made permanent, retained (with minor alterations), or removed. The experimental order can also be maintained for further review, up to a maximum period of 18 months.

WWW ETRO CONSULTATION

COMMENTS ARE CONTINUALLY RECORDED BY WARD COUNCILLORS and ensure all are noted by the Highways Consultation Team.

A resident of Victoria Park Road has repositioned the “Covid 19 Active Travel Measures” signage to ‘better explain’ to drivers why they have to embark on diversionary trajectories. He has also removed a fly tipped bag of cement that was leant against one of the planters. Residents are watering the planters and the all shrubs are healthy and one has numerous berries on it.
Councillors have asked for pine needle mulch to be removed from the kerb(s) and shown the yellow lines on a crucial corner need ‘refreshing’.

CHILD FOOD POVERTY IN SCHOOL HOLIDAYS

Our Conservative Group, now the Administration, has taken action on this issue to ensure whole BCP support where and when necessary:

From the Leader of the BCP Council –

“I am pleased to now be able to confirm that we will be providing food parcels to all children who require them and that this will be available from Monday 26th October 2020. I am also particularly pleased to be able to utilise the “Together We Can” network to help facilitate this. The best of this pandemic is how we can come together as a community to support each other and there is no better embodiment of this than Together We Can.
“The government have made it clear that local Councils are the ones who are best placed to make sure that those families who find themselves struggling with food poverty during these tough times. We’ve received additional money of around £3m this week alone from government to help with our response to things such as this.

We’ve therefore spent the last few days ensuring that our already established methods to help in this area, such as through our Together We Can programme, are ready to ensure that no child who needs extra food over the half term will go without.
I’m pleased to confirm that this is all now firmly in place and we will continue to make sure that any child or family who needs help gets it.
If you are entitled to free school meals or universal credit and struggling to pay for food over half term, we will be supporting the community response by making food parcels available to all who need them.
The Together We Can website has details of how to contact us. It is open Monday to Friday.

Cllr Drew Mellor, Leader, BCP Council.”

BOUNDARY ROAD ROUNDABOUT
Work continues and despite ‘road closures’ , Gillett Road at the roundabout end ( access from Fern Barrow ( new Covid 19 Testing Station being set up in Gillett Road – appointments ONLY ) ) and south bound Boundary Road carriageway , traffic congestion and traffic ‘incidents’ have not registered on the Ward Councillors desks nor in boxes. Certain signage has been improved , extended ( needs improving and promised to be so ) and the protocol of ensuring all safety signage ( such as the temporary pedestrian crossing ) is UPRIGHT AND VISIBLE at the start of each working day. Cllr Hedges has persistently called for Highways to use “non-tip-uppable” signs where the legends are BOLTED into the frames and not just clipped in…….and even with sandbags weighting them down , wind and flailing feet from belligerent passing pedestrians often see these signs not only failing to fulfil their prime intention but becoming trip hazards on the pavement and obstacles sliding into the carriageways. We will continue to press for improvements in this particular area of road works and continue to monitor the scheme’s progression as a whole.

A MESSAGE FROM OUR WARD’S FOOD CHARITY “CRUMBS”
“A unique charity that opens doors to employment and independent living through hospitality training.”

As the winter months are long – vulnerable elderly residents in our community find it hard to get to the shops- Crumbs have put together a trial package of home-made ready meals nutritious and all fresh ingredients
Please see attached information- please share to anyone you feel may need support – we deliver free at short notice -socially distance delivery to the door
Let’s get together to see how we can make the Christmas lunch work- having something to look forward to for many elderly living on their own is priceless.

We can socially distance the tables in Community Centres

  • 6 covers per table – 4 tables in the room 24 covers each day to be safe , we could do this over a few days if we have the numbers
  • Guests would be shown to their table
  • Hand sanitizer at the entrance and one their table
  • Temperature check taken and logged on arrival.
  • Name and contact number for traceability log
  • Food to be cooked at Crumbs
  • Hot trolley will be set up before hand
  • Crumbs team can work from your kitchen to serve meals
  • Only two member will serve the tables masked and shields will be warn at all times
  • All tableware will be heat washed -gloves will be warn to set tables

Erika Sloper Food Service Manager www.crumbsathome.org.uk

FLY POSTING ON HIGHWAYS FURNITURE

Ward Councillors continue to remove these dangerous and illegal distractions to drivers and pedestrians. ALL materials recovered are taken to BCP Council’s depot in Southcote Road for eco-disposal.
Councillors continue to insist these companies are “contacted and advised” and we continue to actively enquire for Fixed Penalty Notices for persistent offenders.
Please inform your Ward Councillors when these appear.
WARD NOTICEBOARDS
These continue to be refreshed with new information. Our local Police Team have sent new information flyers and these have been installed in our Ward’s notice boards at Slades Park ,
Wallisdown Roundabout ( at Aldi ) and in Bascott Road.
Ward Councillors apllied for a new one in Vicarage Road but have at this point been unsuccessful………

CIL FUNDING
To ‘beat’ the previous BCP Council’s Administration’s “deadline” , with many proposed and indeed passed “Community Infrastructure levy” applications having ‘failed to proceed or ‘failed in process’ ( no comment ) , the final £15,000 has been allotted to schemes for new play equipment at Slades Park and ‘incursion prevention measures’ and new litter bins off Columbia Road heading into Cornish Gardens.
The Speed Indicator Devices requested for Daws Avenue have now been provided by BCP Highways Road Safety Team at no expense to the Ward’s CIL funds.

MAN LIVING IN HORSEBOX , VICTORIA PARK ROAD
Councillors have arranged for BCP’s Outreach Team ( St.Mungo’s ) to make contact with this gentleman to ensure he is not vulnerable.
The horse box is being fitted out with shower facilities and has heating. He assured our Outreach Team that he was quite comfortable and safe. The vehicle although it had three flat tyres earlier in that week , is taxed and MOT’d to be legally on the highway although at a tight junction , and close to a bend reducing sight lines for drivers in both directions.
It is half parked on the pavement. Highways and Road Safety Teams along with Parking & Enforcement Teams are also involved in this issue as this area has particular attention because of the ETRO scheme mentioned above.

GOOD WORK BY RESIDENTS IN FORSYTH GARDENS
LITTER PICKING
Residents of Forsyth Gardens continue to litter pick their area which we thank them for.
Councillors are active across Wards with their pickers and bags and whilst Covid restrictions have stymied mass litter picks , individuals and indeed some cycling Councillors are still ‘clearing the streets’ with 172 individual items safely disposed of after on two mile journey across our Ward starting just outside it……


They have been on numerous litter picks and cleared the leaf mulch from the road and kerbsides. They are planning a litter pick along Wallisdown Road before Lockdown too.
The Police are now setting about investigating two new ASB issues recetly reported by the Councillors.
TALKING TO OUR MP ABOUT THE WALLISDOWN ROAD WORKS

meet with Conor Burns MP to discuss the Wallisdown Road works scheme ( second half to start the other side of the Wallisdown Roadabout ) with Boundary Road Roundabout works well progressed and on schedule.
There have been representations from our Ward’s cycling community and cycling enthusiasts concerning aspects and tweaks that they would wish to see and these are ebing relayed to the BCP Head of Major Engineering Projects.

“ROAD CLOSED” signage…….but IS the road “CLOSED” ?

Ah , but IS it ? Daws Avenue saw a head on ‘bump’ between two cars , one exiting and one trying to enter the road to visit her father YET both , with the entry side of the road
BARRICADED , access and egress were the one and the same side of the carriageway off a busy Turbary Park Avenue. ( The works and signage were for SGN works ).

layout was employed in Gillett Road ( T&BW Ward) where so many WWW Residents shop , visit the Pharmacy , visit the Village Surgery , can now have a coffee ( “L’Arté” coffee shop ) , buy take-aways , visit other roads off Gillett Road , access BOTH Universities AND find their way “seemingly barred” to the new Covid 19 Testing Station* !!!
( *Universities and Public Health England , appointments only when open. )
Ongoing dialogue betweeen Ward Councillors and Highways Engineers saw this rectified speedily and the above , less aggressive and clear ‘advice’ sees safer traffic and pedestrian movements.

Helping to deliver food packages to families
  Our Together We Can programme have been working with Yellow Coaches & Yellow Buses to deliver food parcels to over 261 families and 502 children in the community during half term across the Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole conurbation. BCP Councillor Nicola Greene Portfolio Holder for Covid Resilience said: “I am extremely proud of the efforts of all those who have stepped up to prepare food parcels, staff the phone lines, plan the distribution and deliver these essential packages to families all across the BCP area this half term.” “We’ve seen a brilliant effort from all those involved to make sure those children most in need don’t go hungry. A huge thank you all our staff, amazing volunteers and to Yellow Buses for taking part and helping to distribute food parcels – what fantastic support.” 

BCP Council response to national lockdown
Leader of the Council Cllr Drew Mellor said:“Residents should be reassured that we are ready and prepared for any additional measures which need to be taken following this latest government announcement. Our multi-agency approach, which commenced at the start of the pandemic, has continued to operate on an almost daily basis and make preparations for eventualities such as this.
“We will be working to support residents and businesses and work with our public sector partners, including the NHS, to ensure continued delivery of the services which we know people rely on. 
“I would particularly like to thank local businesses for working so hard to be covid-compliant and provide services to residents safely. I don’t underestimate the very difficult position that tonight’s announcement places our businesses in, and those in the hospitality sector in particular. We will be working with our local MPs to seek further clarification from the government as soon as possible on whether additional support is available to the hospitality sector to help them through this latest lockdown.”
Cllr Nicola Greene, Cabinet Member for Covid Resilience and Public Health said: “It is clear from the data presented tonight that cases in our area continue to rise across all age groups, with hospital admissions also rising, posing a risk to capacity in a matter of weeks.
“We are grateful to the vast majority of local people for following national guidance on social distancing, face coverings and hand hygiene, and for self-isolating when needed. 

I am confident that everyone will continue to do their bit now, staying at home and only having physical contact with those in your household or your exclusive bubble.

“The Together We Can helpline is operational from 9am on Monday on 0300 123 7052 to support anyone requiring support, in particular those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and require help accessing essentials such as food and medicines.”

Councillor Philip Broadhead
Deputy Leader & Cabinet Member for Regeneration, Economy and Strategic Planning 
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Council
T. 07709 427725   philip.broadhead@bcpcouncil.gov.uk

Following the Prime Minister’s announcement on Saturday, new restrictions will come into force in England from Thursday 5 November:

You must stay at home and only leave for specific reasons. This includes for: education or to provide childcare exercise outdoors, with your household or support bubble work, where you cannot work from home  to shop for food and essentials to provide care for vulnerable people or as a volunteer medical reasons, appointments and to escape injury or harm to visit members of your support bubble 
Here’s what we know about the latest restrictions
Schools, education settings and essential shops will stay open.

Non-essential shops, leisure and entertainment venues will all be closed.

Pubs, bars and restaurants must close, except for takeaway and delivery services.

Playgrounds can remain open.

Hotels, hostels and other accommodation should only open for those who have to travel for work purposes and for a limited number of other exemptions which will be set out in law.

Your Ward Councillors hope this ‘newsletter’/Report is of continued help and interest.
Please let us know if is no longer required.

Hopefully this time it is not too large to be sent out in two halves…..
Stay safe , stay well , and stay in touch.

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