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Bonkers Blog July 2019

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15 July - Making residents’ lives difficult - as usual

Road closure Bus diversionWith just ten days notice Bexley Council issued an unhelpful Public Notice announcing a two week closure of the B213 to Erith otherwise known as Abbey Road. Nearly a mile of it.

They said there would be no access to the five cul-de-sacs that lead from the B213 towards the railway line in Belvedere. The sort of of notice which one should expect from a bureaucrat who has no regard for those who pay his salary.

Fortunately the Council’s contractor, FM Conway, managed each junction such that residents could drive to and from their homes pretty much all the time; obviously not when asphalt was being dumped across those junctions but even then they tried to do it a half road width at a time to minimise any inconvenience.

No doubt someone somewhere was held up for a while but given that the road was in a very bad state and needed to be resurfaced it has been a job pretty well done.

The postman came every day, delivery vans made the effort but Bexley’s recycling lorries gave up and didn’t come until Saturday. The normal collection day is Friday. (Garden waste was on time.)

As you may deduce from the two photos shown here the job ran a day late, entirely the result of Conway’s staff being helpful to residents in their cars. The constant hold ups meant that every day they fell another few metres behind with the result that buses are still on diversion today.

The residents of New Road are understandably not happy.

Abbey Road
Abbey Road
Road closure Road closure Road closure Road closure

It is not all that long since New Road was a quiet residential climb through the woods and then the B11 came along. Last Saturday the 301 joined it taking the total number of buses to 18 an hour. That’s throbbing diesel engines at three stops in each direction from six in the morning until just before one the following morning.

How long before South East London gets to see the silent electric double deckers being introduced in North West London? (Final Photo below.)

Today because of the continuing Abbey Road closure the regular New Road buses are joined by the 229, 469, 602 and 609. A total of at least 36 buses an hour. This morning a neighbour told me that her bus was one of a queue of three descending New Road while two were trying to go the other way.

The junction of New Road and Abbey Road (See Photos below) is a typical poor design from Bexley Council presenting difficulties for the drivers of all large vehicles and the left turn from Woolwich Road to Brampton Road at the Knee Hill traffic lights is close to impossible for buses without the good will of fellow drivers. It was occasionally difficult with four buses an hour, now we have more than twice as many much bigger vehicles.

Not easing over the kerbs on Knee Hill by just a couple of feet looks more like stupidity by Bexley and Greenwich Councils with every bus that passes.

301 bus Road closure Road closure Electric buses

The Alexander Dennis electric buses are essentially Chinese technology assembled in the UK. They have a 382kWh battery (64.2) and a 200kW motor (150kW) giving it a range of about 160 miles (320).

Figures in parenthesis - my electric car. I imagine the bus would have difficulty competing with my 0-60 figures.


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