Highwood Road to remain closed; traffic review promised for rest of town

 SGC meeting to discuss closure of Highwood Road, Patchway. Overflow hall.

The “experimental” closure of Highwood Road to general traffic will be made permanent following a fractious meeting of South Gloucestershie councilors at Patchway Community College last night (16th October).

Around 500 members of the public packed into the main hall at the school with a further 200 listening via an audio link in a smaller, adjacent hall.

A report produced by council officers ahead of the meeting stated that re-opening the road to general traffic would put at risk millions of pounds of government funding for the North Fringe to Hengrove bus rapid transit scheme (now being marketed under the MetroBus banner) that will link Cribbs Causeway with Bristol city centre and South Bristol. Officers also stated that allowing the MetroBus to share the road with general trafic would lead to a fall in passenger numbers and a consequent increase in traffic congestion.

Around twenty members of the public made use of their right to address the meeting, each for up to five minutes. First up was Patchway town councillor Dave Tiley, speaking on behalf of Mayor Chris Mills, who was unable to attend. He described South Gloucestershire Council’s (SGC’s) 18-month experimental closure of the road as a “sham” used to “cycnically placate” concerned residents.

Other speakers repeated counter arguments that have been widely aired by hundreds of Patchway residents over the last couple of years, which can be broadly categorised as: increased traffic on Coniston Road; rat runs on smaller roads throughout Patchway and extra journey lengths for people living in the ‘birds and trees’ roads.

Two members of the public spoke in favour of the closure: Dave Redgewell of  the South West Transport Alliance and a cyclist from Stoke Gifford, the latter claiming that other people in favour of keeping the road opened hadn’t attended the meeting “for fear of being lynched”.

After two hours of public contributions, it was over to councillors to start their debate. Patchway district and town councillor Sam Scott proposed that the traffic regulation orders be “extinguished”, allowing the road to be re-opened to general traffic. An hour of debate followed in which opinions were split clearly along party lines: support from Labour (plus the sole UKIP councillor) and opposition from the Conservatives and Lib Dems.

A ‘named vote’ was then called, in which councillors were individually asked by the monitoring officer whether they were for or against the motion. As it became clear that a majority of the councillors would be against re-opening, members of the public started heckling the councillors, with some leaving their seats to shout and gesticulate in front of the area where councillors were seated. A number of private security guards, from a team of nine which had been hired by the council, then swung into action in an attempt to protect councillors from abuse and calm the situation.

With the vote lost and having been at the meeting for over three hours, around round three-quarters of the public chose to leave the meeting at this point, with many voicing their opinions as they walked out.

A security guard keeps watch at the Highwood Road council meeting.

Photo: A security guard (standing) keeps watch in the centre of the hall, as councillors continue their debate.

An alternative proposal was then put forward by Cllr Brian Allinson (Conservative, Stoke Gifford), for the road to remain closed and a traffic review to be carried out across the rest of Patchway. Both Cllr Allinson and Cllr Pat Hockey (Lib Dem), who seconded the motion, stressed the importance of the MetroBus project to the “whole of the West of England area”. Cllr James Hunt (Conservative, Emersons Green) also spoke in support, saying how critical the MetroBus scheme was to his local area (which it will also serve) and claiming that Patchway’s Labour councillors had “supported Highwood Road’s closure for over ten years” before a recent change of heart – an accusation strongly denied by Cllr Eve Orpen (Labour, Patchway).

Cllr Allinson’s proposal was duly approved in another ‘named vote’ that once again split along party lines.

How events were reported on the Patchway Journal’s Twitter feed:

7:05pm Packed hall at Patchway #HighwoodRoad council meeting. 200 more in overflow hall

7:18pm At least 700 people at #HighwoodRoad council meeting in Patchway tonight. Waiting for main debate to start…

7:24pm #HighwoodRoad debate now underway. Residents were “cynically placated” by SGC’s experimental closure says Cllr Dave Tiley

7:30pm Decision to keep #HighwoodRoad closed would be “a nail in the coffin of localism” says Dave Tiley. New 2900 signature petition presented

7:33pm Dave Redgewell says #HighwoodRoad bus route is important to whole of Bristol. Not just a “parish” issue

7:39pm Why build a relief road and then close the road it relieves? asks Patchway Town Cllr John Moore #HighwoodRoad

7:41pm “SGC report on #HighwoodRoad is biased. Transparency never looked so murky,” says resident of Patchway

7:53pm Trial closure of #HighwoodRoad has been “an unmitigated disaster,” says Lew Gray. “Why not try a trial period with it open?” he asks

8:08pm A resident who has conducted his own traffic surveys on Coniston Road says council’s own figures are too low and not credible #HighwoodRoad

8:17pm 12 more members of the public still waiting to speak on #HighwoodRoad. Each can have up to 5 minutes. Councillors’ debate will then follow

8:28pm HMC garage in Patchway has had to make 3 staff redundant because of #HighwoodRoad closure, says owner’s daughter. More may have to follow

8:45pm Council argues that #HighwoodRoad closure will benefit bus services but residents say their own no. 75 is suffering delays on Coniston Road

8:57pm Charlton Hayes resident to councillors: “Use your heads and re-open #HighwoodRoad”

9:00pm Cyclist from Stoke Gifford speaks in favour of #HighwoodRoad closure. “More attractive for travel by bike and on foot.” Booed from hall

9:12pm #HighwoodRoad meeting: Public contributions now complete – after 2 hours. Councillors now about to begin debating

9:23pm #HighwoodRoad issue looks like going straight to a vote after Cllr Sam Scott proposes re-opening. Seconded by Cllr Eve Orpen (both Labour)

9:25pm But before a vote, three other councillors want to have their say, starting with Cllr Brian Allinson (Conservative)…

9:33pm Cllr Allinson: 10,000s of residents in other areas of South Glos will be upset if Metrobus project endangered by re-opening #HighwoodRoad

9:38pm Cllr Andy Perkins (Labour) says #HighwoodRoad report presented to council is “misleading

9:45pm Cllr Ian Scott (Labour): In future, bus operators might want Metrobus to use Hayes Way instead of #HighwoodRoad

9:54pm Cllr Pat Hockey (Lib Dem) talks of vision created over 10 years ago. People of Patchway have had chance to comment but not used it

10:13pm Named vote on #HighwoodRoad. Result soon…

10:20pm #HighwoodRoad vote result (on motion to re-open) LOST. Cllr Allinson to make alternative proposal…

10:21pm Security guards have taken strategic positions within the hall. Heckling from public #HighwoodRoad

10:23pm #HighwoodRoad to stay closed. Alternative proposal is to study road safety issues within Patchway

10:30pm Most of public have left. Debate continues. Security guards keeping close watch all around the hall. Extraordinary scene.

11:17pm Alternative proposal from Conservatives succeeds. #HighwoodRoad closure will be permanent. Promise of traffic review for rest of Patchway

The agreed decision:

  1. To confirm the Experimental Traffic Regulation Orders as Permanent Orders and which in their own right support the MetroBus North Fringe to Hengrove rapid transit scheme;
  2. To authorise the Head of Legal and Democratic Services to seal the Permanent Orders and post Notices of the decision;
  3. That officers are instructed to work with Patchway Town Council to undertake further investigations to assess the remaining issues and to report the outcome of the investigations to a future Planning, Transportation & Strategic Environment Committee for consideration.

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  1. As the decision is to keep Highwood Road closed permanently will there be sign’s put up at the entrance to Sycamore drive stating that the road ahead is closed.Many people turn into Coniston Rd and then take the first right into Sycamore Drive not realising it is a cul-de-sac,,by the time they reach Bay Tree Close at the bottom there is usually temper tantrums at the time lost and stupid driving back up Sycamore trying to make up the lost few minute’s.There has been a massive amount of this type of traffic down here since the closure including HGV’s and it can be dangerous when faced with irate drivers haring up the road towards you as common sense goes out the window.

  2. And will the closed road be better policed I might not like the out come but I will bide by the law and not use Highwood road I just hope everyone else does the same

  3. I hope they do Richard as I am fed up of them turning outside my house in Baytree in a rush and my kids having to take evasive action to prevent being run over on the footpath.

  4. lol @Jen! (Should I say Maude Flanders?!?) “Won’t somebody think of the children?!?”

    You are fed up of the cars (occasionally/sometimes/a bit) turning round outside your house. Fair enough. I would be too.

    Why do you add the bit about your kids? Why? Are they truly under threat of death from a horrible accident? Really? Honestly now, really?

    I reckon you tacked that bit about kids on the end because “we need to think of the kids” and that carries more weight than the understandable (but minor) inconvenience of extra traffic on your road.

    I forget which pro Highwood Road sort said “stick to factual arguments” – it wasn’t you, but from both sides perhaps it’s an idea to leave off the emotive bit hey?

    And this is why you are all at heart NIMBYS.

    @Happy. It’s the first thing I hope they do, they can drag Andy and his one man protest out of the way of the underused buses for a start 😉

  5. I certainly do not agree with the closure and if you are classed as a NIMBY if you want to protect your local area as insinuated by Patchway Bloke then I am pleased to be classed as one, and contrary him slinging it as an insult,I take it as a compliment
    I do not want to cover old ground the decision is made,do I accept it no, will I abide by it no, have I used the road already, yes,today, and will continue from now on,and I hope a lot more will flout the closure, they cant lock us all up can they,time for a less “democratic” course of action.
    People of Patchway do not give up now,stick together and one day it will reopen

  6. Where to start,

    Thanks to everyone who signed the petition and attended last nights meeting, I would like to thank Dave Tiley for reading out my speech, just wish I was there to read it out myself.

    Last night was an example of party politics and past deals being upheld.

    Lib dem Cllr. Hockey saying patchway had its chance in the past to have its say rings a bit hollow, as both Lib dem Cllrs Dando and Grumpner refused to take our complaints to SGC and I don’t think Cllr Woodley ever thought about it.

    Only when they lost their seats in 2011 did Patchway get councillors who tried to take this problem to SGC, who refused to talk about it to us.

    SGC sold Highwood road to bovis, so they could squeeze as many houses onto Charlton Hayes as possible, SGC tried to frighten us last year with the story that it would cost 500k to reopen the road, the legal department told the councillors that they couldn’t hide behind the cost as this would leave SGC open to a challenge and possible judicial review, so they came up with a cock and bull story about it would slow the Metrobus down by 7% OMG are they serious!!!!!

    Just increase the speed limit on the road from 20 to 25 mph.

    But of course they can’t do that, because they would have to pay Bovis back and they are not allowed to talk about money!!!

    As for the cyclist who rides to the library, he has no need to ride on that part of Highwood road?

    Last nights meeting was predetermined which is against the councillors code of conduct, the proof is both Patchway Stoke lodge Tory councillors didn’t turn up for last night’s meeting, as they didn’t have the courage to support local residents and vote against the party whip.

    Do you want councillors look out for the interests of there residents or just do as there party tells them.

    Only the future will tell, but look out for many more sleeping policemen on Coniston road, who knows this may slow down the 75 by more than 7% what then reroute it to the bus lane?

    Again thanks to everyone who supported the petition

    Chris Mills

  7. Democracy doesn’t exist in South Glos. SGC have proved themselves to be a dictatorial autocratic arrogant council who are intransient – they have grossly underestimated the strength of feeling about the closure of Highwood Road. It is an insult to the people of Patchway.
    This estate was mainly built to house the people involved in the successful aircraft industry that provided much of the wealth in this area. We have seen the loss of farms, the factory, the airfield and now our main road has been taken from us. It appears new towns/estates built up around us take precedence for their needs and ours don’t count. How dare they!
    The outcome of this current situation was apparently decided many years ago. What horrors have they got planned for us for the next 10 years? Are we all fully aware of the huge number of dwellings planned for the airfield/Cribbs sites? Will Hayes Way be able to cope with all that traffic plus that from Highwood Road? If SGC are lacking in basic common sense, lets try and see if we can apply some for ourselves. In the meantime, where do we go from here. There surely must be some sort of appeal process. Does any one know the correct procedure?

  8. Anyone who drives their car willing up a road that is not legally right?

    I want Avon and Somerset Police to be there to fine you all.

    Like it or lump it. It appears that it’s not being enforced?

    You lot wasted all our time (and money) simpletons, but you did. Let’s call it a day and say you all lost.

  9. @patchway bloke

    yep I’m a nimby. I would rather have a road near to me reopened than see the traffic rerouted through residential streets causing more risk to the people who live there.

  10. Just motorcycled down Highwood road and again this morning there was an unauthorised car and lorry using it. Just for the record the lorry using highwood road this morning is one which is contracted out by SGC as they are re-surfacing Sycamore drive, it beggers belief really that this has happened after everything that has gone on. Just another smack in the face for Patchway residents!

  11. Please can we not insult people on this forum
    What’s done is done we now have to educate people that don’t need to use the roads in Patchway if you are not going to you home in Patchway then it’s simple you don’t use Coniston road I still can’t understand why people would want to use it if they live outside of Patchway .
    Also not everyone was for the road to open as it’s been said before only a small minortity wanted it that way .
    As for breaking the law by coming down the road that isn’t a good thing to teach your children is it .
    We can go on and on about this road but it’s been voted on and the vote to keep it closed was the outcome .

  12. Nice to know that a thread on here is to keep insulting people,we are all simpletons now,yes we lost but that does not make it a right decision, and Patchway Bloke despite being requested in previous threads has yet to explain one valid reason why this road should be closed

  13. Can I also say on the issue of Speaking on behalf of Patchway residents on Highwood road it’s not all the resident only 4000 that you are speaking on behalf of

  14. Happy, please stop quoting this 4000 out of 11000. Unfortunately some people will not have access to a computer and possibly not visit the shops which had paper copies of the petition. We unfortunately don’t know how many extra would have voted for the opening of highwood lane but conversly we would not know how many voted against this without doing a door to door survey.

    I think overall the council have been quite underhand about the whole Charlton Hayes/ Highwood road situation. I moved to Patchway way back in late 2002 into Sycamore drive and nothing was seen in my legal searches with regards to the whole Charlton Hayes/Highwood Road development approval. Now why is this? Possibly my solicitor didn’t do their job correctly but more than likely is that information about this development has been supressed from the public domain.

    From my recollection the only time we actually knew the road was going to be closed was once the ‘Experimental’ consultation signs went up on Highwood Road. In no way has the council actually tried to engage with residents before this time.

    This whole situation stems from the council making very poor decisions from the outset. The ideal situation which everybody has already said was to have one side of the duel carraigeway as bus only with the other side given to normal traffic. How the council can call Hayes Way as a relief road but actually close the road it is relieving is beyond me.

    I’m not sure whether there is a certain amount of corruption within the council or just pure incompetence to be honest! People can make their own minds up on this!

  15. I really can’t understand why there was not a compromise here? Highwood Road is a Dual Carriageway, why was there not an alternative proposal to have a bus lane and a lane for normal traffic in each direction!! Bus lanes alongside a normal traffic lane work throughout the area, so why no here?

    This would allow the Rapid Transport Scheme to have a dedicated lane, which was SGC’s main arguement, and keep HGV’s and local traffic away from the narrow streets of Patchway. It would also provide an alternative route if ever the new road from the A38 fly over to the Mall was blocked!! Simples!!!

  16. I’ve said enough everywhere, and clearly disagree with the name callers and told you so attitude of the obvious on here. All points have been made over and over, and all are valid.

    This closure has continued to be wilful and it’s reasons have changed each time on specifics to suit whatever agenda suits SGC’s story at the time, and perhaps who else they serve behind closed doors, their decision was made behind closed doors on Wednesday night, pre-determination if ever I’ve seen it. Why they thought they needed to come here with a show council is beyond me when it was clear they were not for turning, but I’m glad people have seen how they operate at last. 10k a year minimum each for that, and more for committees etc! 750k minimum plus chief exec Amanda Deeks on 150k plus, then her colleagues, so around a million a year between them. That would cover a few green bin services etc etc.

    Just a note on the officer who said it was difficult to re-integrate the buses into the traffic after the bus lane, well, clearly it re-integrates after the traffic lights anyway(!() but not only that, the dual carriageway is still in place on the other side of the road up by the lights, so options were there to make change if they had wanted to, but, they don’t want to.

    Also disappointing to note the likes of Councillor Mike Drew of Yate clearly had no idea of where we were talking about, he won’t have been alone in that, so, many voted on something they knew nothing of, only what they were told, or fed.

    I guess the most disappointing thing for me is they didn’t care either.

  17. Paul
    Yes we did know way before the road closed of the plans ,in our road we have know about them for over 10 years
    Like Dave has said all has been done that can be done just remember when you vote next time who wanted what

  18. well to close a main artery from cribbs causeway to a38 and replace it with a road not fit for purpose where 99% of the traffic now have to reroot and 1% now use it,yes that sounds good.Does the council have any good ideas?Firstly it was 6 million wasted on the tram exercise(althou they did sent people round to ask what we thought) then it was 60 thousand to see if milk floats in concrete tracks would do the trick(I already worked this one out in my head and new it wouldn’t work and it didn’t cost a penny)even though the system they were going to copy from cardiff had stopped working and was removed.so now this 101 MILLION PINK ELEPHANT.even though people in bristol working for a better transport system don’t want this as people are not going to use it.But i’m sure PATCHWAY BLOKE will as he spends 3/4 to a hour to get to bristol.lol.Anybody who recommends this has either got to stupid(at our expense) incompetent or corrupt and there is no other verdict am intelligent person could come to.

  19. patchway bloke and happy,what a couple of nimbys,i will be using highwood road as much as i can get away with,i will put a pound away every week to help pay the fine if i should get caught and i hope others do the same and save petrol and time.

  20. “Children put at risk”

    “Rodway Road Shops all going to close”

    “People “Isolated” in Patchway”

    These are all the FACTS that I am told are facts by all of you.

    The reality is this. A) you don’t like the extra traffic/road noise. B) you don’t like it takes longer to drive to Mall etc.

    (also a lot of you live on said roads but still choose to park outside your houses and that when you have alternative off road parking – but then that’s ok because so long as you are ok that’s fine).

    So many selfish people in Patchway it’s untrue. Yes I live here, I own my home and lived here all my life – but a lot of you are all ignorant/selfish people.

    Ignorant? “we were never told about the road closure” lol. Rubbish. SGC had a legal requirement to do that. You just didn’t care. You can’t be bothered to vote in local elections, make yourself aware of local issues – you had 10 years or so.

  21. The fact they employed 9 private security staff to intimidate and bully anyone attending the meeting should have raised alarm bells… who authorised that payment out of our council tax?
    From the way the road was designed as part of the ‘trial’ it was clear they were never going to re-open it… I mean, the created a bottle neck at the roundabout for starters.. Who creates a bus lane only to have it revert back to single carriage where it’s needed most?
    A compromise that people might have accepted is make the road 2+ and time restricted, e.g like A38 from Filton towards Horfield.
    There is no good reason for it to be 24hr when the bus service clearly isn’t!
    Coniston Rd is a nightmare now, so well done SGC and Patchway Town Councils, keep taking our money and wait until the next local election… you’re out.

  22. #Alun
    Since the 2011 elections, all but 2 councillors on Patchway town council have joined the campaign to keep Highway road open, the 3 Patchway ward councillors on SGC are also Town councillors, at the SGC meeting on the 16th, they all spoke supporting our petition to open the road, with councillors Scott and Orpen putting forward the Labour Party motion to open the road.

    Chris Mills
    Chairman Patchway Town Council

  23. @Callicroft
    I hope the law comes down hard on you for breaking it and not worried about it.
    And as for me being a NIMBY I find that so funny because it is in my back yard I also live on Callicroft road just like you say you do (not sure if you do )
    I’m just getting on with my life and not letting this issue take over ,there are more things in life to worry about than a stupid road .
    You just have to remember at the next local elections
    And wasn’t labour all for this road being closed 10 years ago.

  24. @Patchway Bloke I think a scheme that is flawed is people’s biggest problem, a daft idea that should have been stopped sooner, admittedly. We are talking about up to half a mile of dedicated bus lane on its own for no great reason, the route before and after carries on regardless with cars!

    As @Alun points out, there is no need for a dedicated 24/7 bus lane there, and the A38 Filton Rd stretch is a great example of alternatives, however, touching on the bouncers issue, it’s again another example of the decision already being taken, as they expected public anger knowing they had already decided to keep it closed, and no alternatives were allowed to be heard. Crazy.

    Another example of pre-determination.

    There are historical failings here, clearly, and those in charge at the time should have done better, extremely naive representation and lack of it, but we can’t turn back the clock, no matter how hard we try now it seems.

    I note another attack on the Metrobus in the Bristol media today, if it does come to nothing I’d like to think we’d have a chance then, but given Wednesday night I assume nothing now, our views count for nothing.

  25. P.S.

    @Happy there were three Lib Dems for Patchway on SGC at the time, Dando, Woodley, Graupner, they were the three most influential people at the time, along with their fellow SGC councillors from Stoke Lodge Hopkinson and Pomfret.

    The SGC councillors had much more clout, particularly being in the majority at SGC, where the Cons and the Libs run the show. Dando,Woodley, and Graupner said little in opposition to the closure then, they are on record as noting residents concerns but failed to act on them.

    Hopkinson and Pomfret supported the re-open campaign last year, and signed the petition, but then voted for closure at SGC, I’m told they didn’t turn up to last weeks vote, I didn’t hear an apology for them.

    I’m told Dando and Hopkinson were the big cheeses here back then, that changed when Dando lost his seat, but being honest, we were let down by many at the time, and the Clerk tends to drive a lot of agendas too. Town councils are too often like Vicar of Dibley.

    I’ve seen first hand how bullies dominate the town councils, which are often elderly and frail people who are just out to do good for the community, sadly it’s got too political at town and district level, and it’s all about money now, just like this decision.

  26. @Dave T
    Sorry Dave I stand corrected yes I remember those 3 Libs and that b****y man Hopkinson.
    Yes they all looked after themselves at the time .
    Well we will all remember when it comes time to use our votes .

  27. @ Patchway Bloke, doesn’t look like i am a 1 man protest now with people using the road as well. and also what part of Patchway do you live? I am guessing no where near the road in question and so not affected by increased traffic and noise.
    I may be a NIMBY lol but i really don’t care. I really don’t want it to happen but its not going to long before someone is hurt or worse by the increased traffic on the alternative routes.
    Also the metro bus scheme wont happen, How many schemes is it now that they wanted to introduce and have not done so?

  28. Oh yes, the Dandos… weren’t they too busy being photographed by potholes to notice other council business?

    As for Hopkinson and Pomfret…well all I’d better say there is what about my fence? They’ll understand

  29. happy,for someone who this subject doesnt bother you you are very quick to reply,i do live in callicroft and have done for a number of years and had to put up with traffic problems for a number of years when the council couldnt get it right so i have a lot of sympathy with the residents of coniston etc,as for using highwood lane it is desperation and desperation calls for drastic measures,just think patchway bloke while you are taking 15 mins to get your milk i will be taking 2mins.cheers

  30. If you lived in Callicroft road then you would know it Highwood road not lane as you have said
    And yes I live on Callicroft road and have had my share of traffic over the many years ,so why shouldn’t it be other peoples turn now .
    Yes I Answer quick on here because I can whats that got to do with any of this forum !!! If you have read any off my posts you will see I have said I don’t care open or closed I will go along with the law and not break it like some sad people have said they will do .
    I also don’t think Patchway bloke gives a stuff how long he takes to get to the local shops

  31. Patchway Bloke = Happy

    Happy = Patchway Bloke

    Double poster under different names, im sure im not the only one to work that out

  32. @Worthing: Re: Posting under different names. I do look out for that sort of thing, as I consider it to be unfair and manipulative, but I have seen nothing that supports your theory that Happy and Patchway Bloke are the same person.

  33. well the quote why shouldnt it be other peoples turn just about weighs it up happy.what a selfish attitude.i think you are one of those out of touch councellors who have the same attitude,i think you are that councellor who didnt even know the road they were supposed to be voting on,sad really.

  34. I am sorry to disappoint you @Worthing but I’m am not Patchway bloke .
    The Admin team or Editor will tell you I’m not the same person
    As for @Callicroft that was just a flippant comment from me as I’m cheesed off with all this bickering on this site , and I am not a Councillor and I know what road im Talking about I think it was you that called it lane and not road

  35. Wow! Not much community spirit going on for some of us is there!
    Having lived facing onto HR for 25 years, on the one hand I am relieved to at last be able to open my windows at night and sleep uninterrupted by the heavy traffic using the BYPASS. On the other hand closing the BYPASS is obviously not the right decision for the community as a whole and that’s what we should be thinking of – the whole community – not selfish individual preferences. There are still effectively 2 carriageways under the weeds and I haven’t heard a single valid reason why the precious bus lane can’t run side by side with 2 way cars on the other carriageway. Consiston is simply not built to or maintained to a good enough standard to cope with the extra traffic.

  36. I am not the poster named as “Happy” or anyone else. Just me. The Editor has my Email address and is welcome to contact me for validation if he so wishes.

    So @Worthing, you’ve “worked out” nothing whatsoever. It does sort of illustrate that those who want Highwood Road re-opened are that blinkered that not only do they ignore any counter argument, but appear to believe that no-one would approve of the SGC decision so we must all be the same person!!!!!!!!

    You couldn’t make it up.

    Good people of Worthing/Durban/Stroud Road (oh and Southsea too) how’s about you start parking more considerately for a start? Nah? No need? You not disaffected? Pffft, lots of selfish people in Patchway.

  37. @Hilzcot?

    “Consiston is simply not built to or maintained to a good enough standard to cope with the extra traffic.”

    Rubbish. It’s more than capable. It’s the main road through Patchway estate that was arguably being underused before. I’d stop all that selfish parking on or around the parade for a start. Then drill down, Worthing/Durban/Stroud. Resident permits only – and only 1/2 per house. Make people use their idle garages etc.

  38. @Patchway Bloke

    Your talents are wasted on here, seriously, you have solutions for everything, get them utilised and we can change Patchway for the better.

    There may be an appetite for independent candidates at the next election given historical failings here, you are the man for the job, have a go, you are talking a lot of sense sometimes, though i do love your use of the word arguably there, and lets be honest, you ignore every counter argument too, if you ignore the flawed reasoning for closing Highwood Road then you are entirely right, after that its stalemate and we are all harping on for nothing.

    You sound like an enforcer who could make a difference. I know I can’t. Over to you. Someone’s got to try to make people behave differently. Your turn, you might be our very own George Ferguson. Based on some figures on here you have 7000 supporters already!

    Keep smiling. 😉

  39. @Patchway Bloke does have some valid arguments. Perhaps we should consider double yellows on one side of every road through the estate. That would give more choice of route to the drivers of 40ft 44ton articulated vehicles. Perhaps we could re- open the bottom of Callicroft to give them direct access from Durban to the A38. On the basis that they average about 10 miles to a gallon of fuel, a 4 mile saving per return journey , the transportation cost savings should bring prices down in the shops. Did 40ft Arctics exist when Coniston was built?
    Seriously Patchway Bloke. Just as you are entitled to your opinion, it doesn’t necessarily follow that the opinions of others are any more or less rubbish than your own.

  40. Very fairly put Hilzcot.

    Must admit I’m feeling a bit done in on all this now. For the first time in my couple of years on the council (only a couple of years left, I won’t resign and cost us money) I had an angry resident on my doorstep complaining about the closure and ‘that’ meeting, once I’d worked out he wasn’t angry with me then I invited him in, unnerved as I was.

    After nigh on an hour with mutual disgust at what went down he agreed to keep in touch by email, and me him. I shared this with other prominent local campaigners like Chris Jenner and other Councillors, and we will explore what now, but bear with us folks, bear with us.

    I’ve seen this sham of a council at SGC do this twice now, first over the airfield, now Highwood Road, both are related, but on very different scales, but having sat opposite and pleaded with those cold blank faces more than I’d like to, well, I just have to wonder what it’s all about really…

  41. Money Dave. What else. It’s what it was always about.
    Developer X pays Council Y an over the odds fee for the land n exchange for some condition or other allowing X to get away with blue murder in a proverbial sense whilst boosting council Y coffers ‘ for the good of the community’. No offence Dave, but looking at S Glos and their interpretation of representing their electorate there’s no mistaking why the electorate has lost interest in politics. Sure every would be politician starts out with an idealistic energy and determination, but once they get to a certain level their interest seems to be more aligned with how much ££££ they can get for next to no work. That’s clearly reflected in the salaries they have approved for themselves. Is there even 1 member of the public who agrees that any council member is worth £100k pa?

  42. @Hilzcot, no offence taken, I completely agree.

    Having gotten further involved in a couple of organisations I have had a real insight into how things work, and become completely disillusioned. I have been let down by ‘leaders’ in a couple of walks in life, hence turning my back on some things. There is integrity out there, but it won’t get you very far, following the right clique is essential, not doing so, damaging and limiting.

    Hence why ‘most’ of those Cons and Liberals sat there and said nothing, glazed over, they aren’t going to blow their 10k min expenses on a subject they don’t know about and certainly don’t care about. I’ve attended a lot of those meetings, and there are people there I swear have never spoken, and others I’m told only speak off-mic in the back rooms to moan about the catering. Other Parish Councillors in other wards tell me it’s the same with these said individuals at Parish level too, quite bizarre really, but they are in rural SGC safe seats, comfy and complacent. Keep housing out of their villages and dump it here and Filton, job done.

    I sat on the airfield committee with Brian Allinson and he was a different chap there, as cynical as the next man when hearing the PR on its closure, I recall he actually missed the vote on its closure at the core strategy meeting, I may be wrong, and I wondered if he was being absent for a nice reason, but too often when put in front of a mic in public he becomes an automaton on the party line again, last week was the worst example of it.

    Lopresti has kept a strange low profile on this one, only speaking on it when prompted, and even he said a compromise may be possible, well, that doesn’t seem the case now.

    It’s galling how the plight of local business has been ignored, HMC are clearly in trouble, redundancies already, fear of more and ultimately closure, but their speaker was ignored. Snack Attack reported the same, and I saw on FB today that Roy’s Autos stated he’s closing up and moving in 2014 after 10 years there.

    Change is permanent, but Charlton Hayes and Bovis’ priorities seem set to change the whole face of Patchway. I hope it will be for the better, and not just at our expense. I admit we do need better, but is this it?

    Separate to that there is a 2020 plan to level Patchway Trading Estate for yet more housing, and we have uncertainty on the corner of Rodway where the fire brigade are moving out and relocating to Hayes Way on the back of the airfield.

    Still James Hunt and Pat Hockey told us to be grateful, so hey, thanks James and Pat. Thanks for nothing.

  43. @Dave Tiley
    HMC seem pretty busy to me ever time I go past their place
    Roy’s autos isn’t a very good car sales place at the best of times they were going anyway road open or closed
    Snack attack changed hands and people didn’t like the change
    The fire station said they can’t move something to do with the roads in Charlton Hayes.

  44. @Dee

    Facts are two people have been made redundant at HMC, there was an article on it in the Bristol Post, I think it was reproduced here. The manangement also said this at last weeks meeting. Trade has dropped they claimed…

    Roy’s Autos will welcome your opinion I’m sure, they sold cars to many people, but you have a crystal ball on their future anyway.

    Snack Attack said the same as I quoted, your anecdotal eveidence may be correct, it may be not, who can say, I again quoted them from the Bristol Post.

    The Fire Brigade Chiefs met the town council recently to confirm they are moving out and onto the back of Charlton Hayes, Hayes Way, and the airfield. The station may be offered to the council for community use, it was said at the meeting.

    I haven’t heard anything differently officially, but if you have then you’ve heard it first, thanks.

  45. Dropped has it well there is always cars being fixed
    MOT for cars being down they seem pretty busy to me all the time but hey what do I know I only live in Charlton Hayes and walk past every day to work
    As for Roy’s Autos have you ever bought a car from them or seen what cars they sale they won’t be a great lost to people around here
    As for the fire station when they last said about moving into here the roads were a no go area as they needed to be able to get in and out from one end to the other not having to turn around and drive back again ,unless the road structure has changed I might be wrong ,
    These were the sort of things that were found out when we bought our house.

  46. You know what you know Dee, and are entitled to your opinion. I find some of them harsh, but hey, your opinion. Those cars are a godsend to many, I’d be happy with a £1000 pound runaround for the winter instead of my bike! I quite like the Matiz in there at the moment, cheap as chips to run, tax and insure. I’ve run great cars in my time, but a very expensive engine repair bill on my BMW made me realise it was more money than sense, geting over status symbols or the lack of them was very liberating. Let’s face it whether you live in Patchway or Charlton Hayes it’s not Utopia or even Clifton, so my cash goes on more fulfillment these days. Four walls, a house is a machine for living in, and then we die, if the kids are lucky, they inherit what we’ve got them, as many won’t get on the ladder these days, hence the need for social housing in Charlton Hayes, Patchway, and everywhere.

    Time will tell on the fire station, end of the day wherever they are based they need to get into Charlton Hayes anyway in event of a fire. Cheers.

  47. Clifton nothing special about that place it’s full of students
    And as for the Socail housing in Charlton Hayes it’s minimall but well needed all dotted about the new houses not in one group cluster .
    I do know what you mean about cars and the cost of repairs but I’m sorry I wouldn’t buy one from that place but that is me .
    Yes I’m a bit like you in your way of thinking spend our money wisely.
    I hope the fire station thing is sorted as well

  48. Ok thanks Dee, nice talking, all the best.

    On that note I think I will shut up about Highwood Road on this forum, at least for a good while. Cheers all, keep on keeping on 😉

  49. @Hilzcot

    No, there were none of these huge articulated lorries that “regularly” have to do 500 point turns in Sycamore Drive.

    There were however double decker busses. Those that were withdrawn due to the selfish parking on the roads I mentioned, and also provide a problem on Coniston now due to the selfish parking around the Parade for one.

    I never advocated “double yellow lines throughout the estate” as you quite subversively replied with.

    I did point out that perhaps a contributory factor to the concerns of traffic to the good people of the estate are partly brought about by their own selfish behaviour – for example their lazy/ignornant parking.

  50. So, what is going to happen? As I understand it, they gave cost of returning the road to its original state and the risks of losing a new transport route as justification for rejecting calls to open the road.. is that true?
    Well I’ll take each argument in turn;
    1. Costs; this should have been ring fenced as contingency from the start, if it wasn’t then the project lead needs sacking. You don’t run a ‘trial’ without securing funds to revert back.. That tells me they had no intention of ever re-opening it. Also, who approved the use of our taxes to make the change in the first place? I don’t recall ever been consulted, so this time you have our approval to spend our taxes on reverting it back.
    2. Transport: well unless it has already been agreed and funds allocated it is a safe bet there will be no transport link. Simply saying “if we don’t keep the road closed we’ll lose out” is scaremongering.
    We won’t get it, it won’t happen, just like the barmy tram idea.. if it involves SGC and BCC it will never see light of day.
    This council is a joke, let’s face it, they cannot be trusted to manage our roads, proof of that is the daily traffic chaos both to Aztec and now to Filton.. Rush hour is now 3 hours long and there answer? Put another junction from bloody Airbus onto the A38… it’s another example of blind leading the stupid

  51. It’s not all SGC Councillors that have mucked up it just seems a few on there now are rubbish so at the next local elections lets change that and vote for those that do listen
    SGC has been great in getting things done in the past not BCC which holds back on progress for Bristol but lately SGC have let us down on a couple of things that have left us thinking what the hell are you doing .
    So we shouldn’t tar all of them as being rubbish

  52. When is Patchway Town Council going to get off its backside and try and get a lawyer to look at whether South Glos Council were within their rights to close Highwood Road, especially after their false consultations. When it was all decided behind closed doors. Remember those packed consultation meetings at the Casson Centre protesting at Bovis plans. It was already signed and sealed then. If everybody who protested donated £10 we could get a judical review. Stop wringing your hands local councillors and get on with it, ignore Lucy Hamid who says we cannot afford it.

  53. Ouch. I have to reply to that Rebecca. Strong. We will regroup on this at next Labour and Council meeting, along with others. I agree we need to pursue all avenues including judicial review. We will keep trying, as we always have done, but you know as an intellectual that the law is an arse and we are against vested interests, I am not a hand wringer and do my best against those who work against us. Thanks for your inspiration, anger is an energiser.

  54. @Rebecca @Dave
    Yes I went to all those meetings and the main concern wasn’t Highwood road being closed it was of sycamore road being closed .
    I’m sorry I might sign my name down for you all but I won’t be putting any of my hard earned money to any sort of donation for a Judical review they are bad news all around just look at what is going on in Bristol at the moment

  55. @Patchway Bloke. A little misinterpreted there. I actually was kind of agreeing with you. I’ve often wondered how the residents of particularly Worthing will react when someone sets their chip pan on fire and the fire brigade stand off and watch a whole terrace burning to the ground because they couldn’t get the fire truck or ambulances through the ridiculously parked cars and vans. The old part of the estate was built at a time when very few ordinary working people had or could afford cars. It’s all very we’ll saying they’ve all got garages up the back lanes but a lot of the garages aren’t big enough to house the modern family cars. But perhaps, as everyone feels it’s their absolute right to park as close to their front doors as they can possibly get, those that haven’t already could consider paving their front gardens to use for parking.

  56. Despite the fact that the council have stated that there has been no appreciable increase in traffic around Coniston Road, they are now canvassing for comments on a proposed cycle priority scheme along part of Coniston Road. Why is this necessary if what they say is correct?

  57. @Hilzcot the parking in Worthing is, to put it mildly, a little tight.

    The trouble that the residents of Worthing have is that one day something WILL be affected by the parking and the council will come along, slap double yellows down and say “well you brought this on yourselves”.

  58. @Hilzcot
    It’s all very well saying that the residents of Worthing Road should pave over front gardens and park their, but quite a few of the properties have front gardens that are also shorter from curtilage to front wall than the length of a modern car. This then causes problems with vehciles overhanging the footpath, thereby obstructing the way for elderlly & infirm,

  59. There should be more yellow lines along the length of Coniston that would cause less traffic hold ups

    And before any one moans there is plenty of parking out the back of all these homes it’s just people can’t be bothered to walk a bit to their front door or back door

  60. Most roads around Patchway need yellow lines as its getting so silly now the roads have all the cars parking on both sides and out side the front garden when a lot of these homes have good parking at the back or in garages its just because people want to park as close to their front door as possible LAZY that’s what people are just LAZY

  61. Well said Happy.

    People in general are lazy/selfish. The Parking at the bottom of Worthing Road is a disgrace. It’s as dangerous for school kids etc as increased traffic on Coniston.

    Also, there is no reason for parking on Coniston by the parade, or right next to the bus stops. Well there is of course, a reason. You said it too. People are just lazy.

    It isn’t confined to Patchway though. My Mum lives in Little Stoke in one of the cul-de-sacs off of Stoke Lane. People could park 3/4 cars amply on their drives, but they prefer that to be for a trampoline etc leave the cars lazily/selfishly parked on a narrow road.

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