After many years of discussion and implementation of the road narrowing features at the entrances to the village, the Parish Council submitted a bid in 2015 as part of the Local Highways Improvement (LHI) scheme. This was based on concerns at the time for speeding traffic near the children’s play area on Warboys Road. This bid was successful and the Parish Council notified in June 2016.
In parallel with this a 2016 village survey confirmed concerns for the speed of vehicles travelling throughout the village.
As a result of concerns, the community plan team saw traffic calming measures researched in detail by looking at other village solutions, considering national statistics for successful implementation whilst also gathering data within Pidley of traffic moving down the High Street and Warboys Road. In addition consultation was made with the local Highways agency to consider options for funding and to discuss the findings with relevance to Pidley & Fenton.
Detailed findings are as shown in the report (a full copy will be available here soon). As part of the report’s findings recommendations for 1, 3 and 5 year implementation have been made to allow the Parish Council to spread the associated costs but also to allow full studies to be conducted by the relevant authorities.
The LHI bid for speed cushions has been approved and the Parish Council must have arranged for the resulting plan to be implemented by March 2017. Otherwise we will lose the funding allocated by Cambridgeshire County Council. In addition the community volunteering team have already embarked on tidying the village and have placed planters at the village entrances, Community Speedwatch teams will be trained and we hope to be able to acquire traffic data from Fenton.
The Parish Council is aware that a number of parishioners have concerns over the impact of various traffic calming measures and has tried to address these as follows. In addition a number of questions have been raised with CCC; once feedback is available this will be communicated. In the meantime should you have any more questions then please seek to discuss this with one of the Parish Councillors so that it can be raised at the next Parish Council meeting.
- Who is funding the cushions? The Parish Council made a bid for funding in 2015 to the Local Highways Improvement scheme to reduce speeding around the play area on Warboys Road. Many Parish Councils apply for this funding and CCH use a risk scoring method to prioritise the bids. Our bid was successful because of the risks associated with young people congregating in this area of the village. As a result the CCH will contribute nearly £10,000 whilst the PC will contribute 10% (£1,050) to the plan as a result of the Bid.
- Where will the cushions be placed? The proposed plan indicates the position of each pair of cushions. This was prepared by the CCH project manager after his visit in July 2016. In order to help residents better understand the location, the Parish Council chairman arranged for a number of traffic cones to be placed in relevant positions on the road side. With time, unfortunately these have been moved out of position. Confirmation of the positions can be found here however the final layout will be confirmed after CCH conduct a road safety audit.
- Why are there only 5 cushions in the LHI proposed plan? The plan as a result of the LHI bid is primarily concerned with the road near to the children’s play area in Warboys Road. Cambridgeshire County Highways’ project manager carried out two site visits in July & August 2016 and identified that placing five pairs of cushions would help provide the most effective traffic calming in this area. Unfortunately the budget as a result of the bid is limited to five pairs at this time, however future funding may be available for alternative locations.
- Why aren’t there any cushions either side of the junction with Fen Road?The LHI bid was originally for 6 pairs of cushions, five pairs of which have been utilised in the proposed plan based on the available budget. The cost of adding & installing further pairs of cushions is ~£1,500 per pair. There would also need to be three additional signs on Fen Road, Pond Close & Church Farm Close at a cost of £900. Funding this will be considered by the Parish Council in the future. In the meantime additional traffic calming measures are being implemented at the village entrances (as described in the community plan).
- Can the location of the cushions be moved? The layout has been designed by the CCH project manager based on the current road layout, existing signage and features. It is subject to review by a Road Safety Audit team appraisal. The project manager has advised that the cushions should be placed ‘at around 80m apart to have any significant effect’. This allows for a steady flow of traffic (<30mph) over the cushions (rather than the need for excessive deceleration and acceleration in between them). He has also taken into account the bends in Warboys Road to draw up his plan. He has identified that the left hand bend as you approach the junction with Fen Road and the final right hand bend as you approach the T-junction with the High street do have an existing effect on slowing the traffic. It is acknowledged that a number of properties have asked for them to be moved by a few metres which has been requested of CCH already and will be reiterated as part of the feedback process.
- What about noise? Larger vehicles are likely to straddle the cushions, and many cars can also do the same which minimises noise but still achieves a slowing of traffic. In addition feedback from Colne has suggested that the cushions have limited impact on noise in nearby properties.
- What about the width and height of the cushions? Cambridgeshire County Council fit as standard a 75mm profile cushion. Cushions are available in two sizes; a lower profile one at 65mm however this may not be as effective and may incur additional charges. The Road Safety audit will be asked to provide advice on the most effective profile. They will also consider the width of the cushion taking into account the width of the road.
- How can I comment on the proposed plan? All households near the intended cushion locations will be sent a letter by CCH about the proposed plans and will have an opportunity to respond to the Parish Council prior to installation.
- When will they be installed? The cushions must be installed by March 2017 to secure the agreed funding from CCC. Installing the cushions and associated signage is envisaged to take 2-3 days. Further details on timing will be advised once known.
- Who is coordinating Speedwatch? A number of volunteers have already put their names forward, and spaces still exist but training should happen this year (2016). Arrangements for training are being coordinated by the Parish Council Chairman (David Hopkins) with Cambridgeshire Police and Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Road Safety Partnership. If you would like to become involved please contact David.