e-shootershill homepage

Recent Updates

  • hilly 7:26 pm on July 25, 2014
    Tags: , , ,   

    New River Crossing Consultation 

    Gallions Reach from Barking Creek

    Gallions Reach from Barking Creek

    Two thousand and twenty-eight pages in eighteen impenetrable documents have been published by Transport for London as part of their consultation on new river crossings in East London, and nowhere does it discuss the prospect of increased traffic in residential roads south of the river. A surprising omission since the poor road infrastructure south of the Thames  was one of the major issues in earlier consultations, and could be seen as the reason that the previous Thames Gateway Bridge scheme was cancelled.

    Also, bizarrely, all the traffic modelling assumes that the Silvertown Tunnel is already in place! Why? Not only is it not in place, but its construction is not even part of the current consultation: there will be a separate consultation later about Silvertown. Even if the tunnel  is approved it will take longer to construct than a bridge or ferry at Gallions Reach so for several years we’ll be dealing with the impact on traffic in the absence of the tunnel, and that’s what the modelling should have shown.

    This assumption that the Silvertown Tunnel has already been built pervades the Traffic Impact Report, to the extent that many of the traffic flow maps  don’t show how traffic will change compared to today, but how they will change compared to the flow after the Silvertown Tunnel has been developed. They are useless for anyone trying to work out how traffic flows will change in the future.

    The consultation asks for our opinions about four possible river crossings:

    1. A new modern ferry at Woolwich
    2. A ferry service at Gallions Reach
    3. A bridge at Gallions Reach
    4. A bridge at Belvedere

    We have until 12th September 2014 to respond, and can do so using an online survey. It can be completed quite quickly; there are just 15 simple questions.  Transport for London are holding some roadshows about the proposals where TfL say their staff will be able to answer any of our questions. There is one at Woolwich Library tomorrow (26th July) between 11.00am and 4.00pm and another at the Broadway Shopping centre, Bexleyheath on Saturday 30th August from 9.00am to 2.00pm.

    Routing of trips using a charged Gallions Bridge from TfL's Traffic Impact Report

    Routing of trips using a charged Gallions Bridge from TfL’s Traffic Impact Report

    I must admit I haven’t read all 2028 pages of TfL’s technical documentation, though I did search them all for mentions of Shooters Hill, Oxleas and Plumstead: I found barely a handful that were relevant, and only one on traffic impacts. This was in a footnote to a summary table at the end of “Report F Gallions Reach Ferry and Tunnel”, which indicated that there may be critical traffic impacts on the South side:

    Particularly increased traffic on tunnel approach roads in Thamesmead, Plumstead & East Wickham (on A2016, A206, A209 & A205). Highways works and traffic management will mitigate but not necessarily eliminate negative impacts

    The traffic flow map above comes from the Traffic Impact Report. Compared to the map in the London Borough of Newham’s report on the Economic Impact of Gallions Reach Crossings it seems to show lower flows through residential roads in Plumstead and Bexley. This may be because it uses a different traffic modelling tool to that used by Newham. It uses a model called the London Regional Demand Model (LoRDM) which models highways using TfL’s River Crossings Highway Assignment Model (RXHAM); Newham used another TfL model called ELHAM. However TfL do add the caveat:

    It should be noted that the RXHAM is strategic in nature and is used to identify broad changes in traffic patterns across the highway network, as well as the magnitude of this change. The results should not be taken as a definitive forecast of future flows, especially on minor roads or at individual junctions. Also the models do not yet assume any mitigation measures that might be introduced such as changes to junction capacities or new traffic calming measures.

    The map shows some traffic increase through Plumstead and Knee Hill, but surprisingly nothing coming from the South Circular at Woolwich. I wonder where all the traffic that currently crosses the river on the Woolwich Free Ferry goes to? Later in the document in the section about the routing of trips using an enhanced Woolwich Ferry it states that “the main roads used to access the ferry south the River Thames are Beresford Street, Western Way and Eastern Way.” Again no South Circular. Is something missing from the model?

    I wrote in a previous post about Oxleas Wood:

    TfL’s work on the traffic impacts of a Gallions Reach crossing will not, in my opinion, be complete unless they include a convincing, costed proposal for solving the inadequacies of the transport network south of the Thames that politicians commit to. Otherwise the additional traffic generated by the new crossing will overload local residential roads leading to pressure for new roads and a renewed threat to our heritage ancient woodland.

    It’s still not complete, and as it stands will lead to increased traffic through residential roads that weren’t designed to take it, leading to pressure for more road building and threatening Plumstead and Oxleas Wood.  Not to mention the end of the Woolwich Free Ferry. A campaign to oppose the Gallions Bridge is being set up.

    Postscript:

    I asked my questions at the roadshow in Woolwich on Saturday. As far as TfL is concerned the Silvertown Tunnel is going ahead so they felt it would be wrong to not include it in the traffic models, and they expect it to be complete before any of the other crossings. Of course if there were no Silvertown Tunnel, I was told, traffic flows over the other crossings would be significantly higher. They didn’t feel it was dishonest not to include the results of modelling without Silvertown. There will be two more consultations about the Silvertown Tunnel, but they would not be about whether it was built but how.

    I expressed surprise at the results of the traffic modelling: in particular the predicted reduced traffic flows from the South Circular Road through Woolwich to a proposed Gallions Reach Bridge, and that the increased flows predicted seemed to show traffic would go along the M25 as far as the approach to the Dartford Crossing, and then turn off along the Thames to Gallions Rach to cross there. The only response was “that’s what the model shows”. There are no current plans for improved road infrastructure South of the Thames, and I was advised to express my concerns in the consultation.

    HOK and Arup design for proposed Thames crossing bridge

    HOK and Arup design for proposed Thames crossing bridge

     
    • Kristine Inglis 4:24 pm on July 29, 2014

      Thank you , Hilly, for all your efforts made at distilling the basic threats/holes/discrepencies of this consultation for us. I’ve had a look at some of it and read your comments and will do the survey. It’s a snow job, TFL operates on uninformed assumption whenever the idea of increased river crossing comes up and floods the public with volumes of words – and it sounds like pretty poor answers at public consultations.
      Will pass your article on.

  • hilly 6:37 pm on July 16, 2014
    Tags: , ,   

    Summer Activities and Bat Walks at Woodlands Farm 

    Woodlands farm Bat Walk poster

    Hannah, the Education Officer at Woodlands Farm, wrote with details of their Summer Holiday Activities for children and about a series of bat walks at the farm in the next couple of months. The children’s activities are:

    Tuesday 19th August Orienteering
    10am-2pm £1 per child
    Can you find your way around the farm without getting lost? Try our different orienteering courses to see how good you are at navigating. No need to book, just drop in.
    Friday 22nd August Be a Farmer for the Day
    10am-12pm and 2pm-4pm £3 per child, accompanying adults free
    Ever fancied seeing what it is like to be a farmer? Join us as we have a go at feeding and weighing our animals as well as walking our fields to check all our animals. This event is only suitable for children over 8 years. It is essential to book, call 0208 319 8900
    Tuesday 26th August Dragonfly Day
    11am-3pm £1 per child
    Drop in for a day all about these fantastic insects. Go dragonfly spotting, follow our trail or make your own dragonfly to take home. Just drop in, for more information call 020 8319 8900
    Wednesday 27th August Science Investigators
    11am-1pm and 2pm-3pm £1 per child.
    Would you like to have a taste at being a scientist and doing investigations? We will be delving into the world of biology with microscopes, owl pellet dissection and more. Drop in to find out more about science. More information call 020 8319 8900.

     

    Common Red Soldier Beetle, also known as the Hogweed Bonking Beetle, at Woodlands Farm

    Common Red Soldier Beetle, also known as the Hogweed Bonking Beetle, at Woodlands Farm

    The Bat Walks are on Wednesday 20th August at 8pm. Thursday 28th August at 7.45pm and Wednesday 3rd September at  7.30pm. Booking is essential, and you’ll need to be quick as places always fill fast: book by  e-mail at education@thewoodlandsfarmtrust.org  or by phone on 020 8319 8900. You’ll be walking around the farm’s meadows in the dark so you will need to wear sturdy footwear and suitable outdoor clothing and bring a torch. Children must be accompanied by an adult and the walks are not recommended for children under 6. They cost £4 for adults and £2 for children.

    Volunteers at the farm have been taking part in the bat Conservation Trust’s  National Bat Monitoring Programme recently and in the first of their July survey walks again detected both Common and Soprano Pipistrelles and Noctules. However they didn’t see anything auite as big as Biggles the Pipistrelle, pictured below,  which featured at Bat Fest at the Natural History Museum recently. Probably just as well.

    Biggles the giant Pipistrelle at Bat Fest at the Natural History Museum

    Biggles the giant Pipistrelle at Bat Fest at the Natural History Museum

     
  • hilly 11:23 am on July 15, 2014
    Tags: , ,   

    Shooters Hill Park Fêtes 

    Friends of Shrewsbury Park Summer Festival leaflet

    Next weekend in Shooters Hill is going to be busy, with both the Friends of Shrewsbury Park and the Eaglesfield Park Neighbourhood Watch Scheme holding their summer fêtes, as well as the opening of Severndroog Castle and a London Bubble play, Ishbel and I, at Castle Woods.

    The Shrewsbury Park Summer Festival is on Saturday, 19th July, starting at 1.00pm. As well as their highly entertaining dog show, complete with competitions for agility, speed and catching biscuits, the Hawk and Hood School of Falconry will be there and there will be opportunities to learn how to safely observe the sun and to help judge the Friends’ photographic competition. There is still just about time to enter the competition, the deadline for entries is tomorrow, 16th July. The Friends web site has details of how to enter:

    We invite you to capture images of the Park over the next few months. They can be dramatic, seasonal, humorous, exciting, tranquil, close ups or panoramic– with or without people and wildlife, colour or black and white.
    The twelve most interesting photos will be chosen to be included in our 2015 calendar.
    Please send your photos to fspdog@hotmail.com with ‘photo comp’ as the subject. It would be very helpful if you also produce a suitable print if possible. Please include your name and a caption, and how best to be in touch with you.

     

    Agility competition at Shrewsbury Park Summer Festival

    Agility competition at Shrewsbury Park Summer Festival

     

    EPNWS Community fete Poster

    The following day, Sunday 20th July, the Eaglesfield Park Neighbourhood Watch Scheme will be holding their Community Fête, which will be opened by the new leader of Greenwich Council and former local councillor Denise Hyland at 12.00 noon. The EPNWS Summer Newsletter described the afternoon’s events:

    The Eaglesfield Park Neighbourhood Watch Scheme (EPNWS) invites you and your family to an afternoon of fun on Sunday 20 July from 12noon to 4pm in Eaglesfield Park. Take part in the activities, wander around the stands and stalls and meet the people that help make our community great. This is the seventh year that the fete has been held to help promote the benefits of Neighbourhood Watch and foster community spirit. The fete will be opened by special guests, including the winner of the poster competition from Christ Church Primary School.
    Some of the activities include a hula hoop demonstration, mini tennis, children’s story telling, face painting and a Punch and Judy show. The Shooters Hill Safer Neighbourhoods Police Team is pulling out all the stops for some fun and exciting activities, with the Greenwich Met Police teams on hand and music from the Police Cadets Drum Corp. You can buy home-made cakes and refreshments, and take part in our raffle to win a pair of tickets to see Disney on Ice in The Royal Borough of Greenwich hospitality box at the 02 on Christmas Eve. The day of fun finishes at the Shooters Hill Lawn Tennis Club which welcomes all the community to check out their new club facilities, with a BBQ and refreshments at the club house from 4pm to 7pm.

    There will also be a chance to try some pond dipping in the Lilly Pond hosted by the Friends of Eaglesfield Park.

    Let’s hope the good weather continues through the weekend. Last year the opening time for the EPNWS Community Fête was marked by torrential rain!

    Stalls at Eaglesfield Park Neighbourhood Watch Community Fête

    Stalls at Eaglesfield Park Neighbourhood Watch Community Fête

     
  • hilly 9:29 am on July 14, 2014
    Tags: ,   

    Severndroog Castle Opening 

    Severndroog Opening Poster

    Next Sunday, 20th July, sees the culmination of  many years of hard work by the Severndroog Castle Building Preservation Trust: the official opening of the restored castle and its new cafe, Castlewood Tea Room. Apart from an Open House day a few years ago it will be the first chance for 25 years for members of the public to see the panoramic view from the top of the castle towards the centre of London.

    On the opening day Severndroog will be open from 10.30am to 4:30pm for a tour of the castle, including the viewing platform, and a range of other activities and stalls:

    Storytelling Tent from ‘Storytellers in Hope‘, with a program of short stories for all ages. Sit down under the trees beneath the Castle to hear stories inspired by the magical setting

    ‘Hawk and Hood’ bird encounters, get up close to the magnificent birds of prey

    Woodland tours, short tours of Castle Woods

    Outdoor barbecue from the Castlewood Tea Rooms team

    Stalls from local organisations including the Green Chain.

    Castlewood Tea Room has had a “soft opening” and has been open to visitors for the last few weekends, selling tea, coffee, homemade cake, pastries, sandwiches and Marshfield Farm ice cream, but will also be officially opened next Sunday.

    Castlewood Tea Room Leaflet

    After the official opening  the Tea Room will be open from 9am to 5 pm every day except Monday and  the Castle will be open every Thursday, Friday and Sunday between  12.30 and 4.30. Entrance to the castle will cost  £2.50 for adults and £2 for children and concessions. Children under 14 years old must be accompanied by an adult. Visitors will be looked after by a team of volunteers, and the trust is looking for more people to help out. Current opportunities are listed on their web site, and you can also get details by e-mailing them on volunteer@severndroogcastle.org.uk                .

    I’ll end with a link to the teaser video that Dr. Barry Gray of the trust sent to me a few months ago.

    The restored Severndroog Castle

    The restored Severndroog Castle

     
  • hilly 3:21 pm on June 20, 2014
    Tags:   

    Mayplace Lane community clean-up 

    Mayplace Lane

    Mayplace Lane

    The next Mayplace Lane community clean-up will take place on Sunday, 22nd June between 11.00am and 1.00pm, details are here on Facebook. Local residents will be clearing rubbish and removing weeds from the lane and also planting flowers and shrubs. Some £80 has been pledged to buy some plants by previous participants. This is the third clean-up. The others have been well supported with up to 20 participants: a great chance to meet neighbours.

    Greenwich Council will again provide equipment such as litter pickers and bags for rubbish, and will collect any rubbish at the end of the session. If you’re planning to come along then it’s worth bringing some strong gardening gloves.  If you have anything stored in the lane you may wish to move it to ensure it is not thrown away.

    Mayplace Lane

    Mayplace Lane

     
c
compose new post
j
next post/next comment
k
previous post/previous comment
r
reply
e
edit
o
show/hide comments
t
go to top
l
go to login
h
show/hide help
shift + esc
cancel