Councillors banking on “sustainable” modes of transport to prevent gridlock

South Gloucestershire Council's transport strategy for the Cribbs/Patchway New Neighbourhood.

A joint statement by Cllrs Brian Allinson (Conservative), Pat Hockey (Lib Dem) and Roger Hutchinson (Labour), lead members of South Gloucestershire Council’s Planning, Transportation and Strategic Environment Committee.

The Cribbs/Patchway new neighbourhood is set to be a major feature of the North Fringe in the coming years. By 2027 it will provide 5,700 new homes, together with a new Enterprise Area linked to Filton’s world-class aerospace sector. It’s a rare opportunity to create a sustainable, attractive new community, right in the heart of the West of England’s economic powerhouse, and it’s important we get it right.

Top of many people’s to-do list is transport, and that’s understandable. The North Fringe already has very busy roads, thanks to its vibrant economy, and the prospect of thousands of new vehicles arriving with the inhabitants of the new neighbourhood is daunting. Traffic congestion hampers economic development, reduces the quality of life for residents and harms the environment. If the new neighbourhood is going to work, we need to offer new residents viable alternatives to the private car and, ideally, we need these alternatives to be in place before they move in.

We’ll do this in a number of ways. First, we’ll ensure through the planning process that all development prioritises sustainable types of transport, such as walking, cycling and public transport, over the private car. Second, we’ll make sure that the new neighbourhood offers a genuine choice of travel modes – one size won’t fit all, and we’re investing in a range of transport options to make sure that individual needs are catered for. And third, wherever possible we’ll link transport provision to the neighbourhood’s development phases, working with developers to ensure that new residents can make the best travel choices right from day one.

Cycle routes and footpaths

Walking and cycling will be a big part of these plans, as the most healthy and environmentally-friendly ways to get about for short journeys. The North Fringe already benefits from a growing network of cycle routes thanks to initiatives such as the Local Sustainable Transport Fund, and the new neighbourhood will add to these with a comprehensive network of high quality cycle and pedestrian paths. We want to make it easy and attractive for people to choose to walk and cycle, especially to their place of work, as part of a package of measures to reduce traffic congestion and promote healthier lifestyles.

Bus and rail services

At the same time, we recognise that walking and cycling alone will never meet all of our transportation needs so we also have comprehensive measures in place to promote public transport use. Bus travel will be key to this, and we will build on previous investment in the area – such as the £80m Greater Bristol Bus Network – with new local bus services and routes running within 400m of every home in the new neighbourhood.

Bus travellers will also benefit from the new neighbourhood’s connections to the multimillion pound MetroBus regional ‘rapid transit’ network, which is expected to be up and running within the next few years. MetroBus will be a different kind of bus service, with fewer stops, faster boarding and more frequent services providing direct and reliable connections between the West of England’s main employment and residential areas. The network’s North Fringe to Hengrove route is set to begin in 2016, and will be extended by 2019 to run directly through the new neighbourhood ensuring that residents have even easier access to these fast, reliable services.

Rail will also play an important part in the new neighbourhood’s sustainable transport mix and land has been set aside for two new rail stations at Filton and Henbury as part of the West of England’s ambitious MetroWest programme. It’s anticipated that by the early 2020s these stations will be served by hourly passenger services running on a reopened Henbury line and we’re fully committed to making this happen as a key part of our transport strategy for the new neighbourhood.

Government investment

Could these rail services be brought forward to start any earlier than currently planned? We’re keen to get the Henbury line up and running as soon as we can and we’re actively exploring ways to do this. However, we have to be realistic. The service will depend on significant investment from central government and other sources, and we have to work to their timescales. We also have to recognise that the business case for the service will depend on progress with the new neighbourhood – without this development there just won’t be sufficient passengers to justify reopening the line.

Finally, the new neighbourhood will also benefit from measures to improve the local road network and improve traffic flow, which will be good for bus services as well as car drivers, and make the road safer for cyclists and other users. We’re investing millions in schemes to increase capacity at some of the key junctions along the A38 and the majority of these will have been completed before the new neighbourhood’s residents begin to move in.

In this way, we aim to make sure that when householders begin to arrive at the new neighbourhood they will have a wide, and growing, range of sustainable transport options available to them, linking them to bus and rail networks throughout our region. This is our vision, and it has been developed through extensive discussion and debate with local people and our neighbouring authorities. We believe it offers the best possible solution to the transport challenges of the new neighbourhood and we’re determined to make it work, for the benefit of the whole of the West of England.

More info:

Image: Artist’s impression of proposed development on the former Filton Airfield. Inset (l-r): Cllrs Allinson, Hockey & Hutchinson.

This article originally appeared in the January 2015 edition of the Bradley Stoke Journal news magazine, delivered FREE, EVERY MONTH, to 9,450 homes in Bradley Stoke, Little Stoke and Stoke Lodge. Phone 01454 300 400 to enquire about advertising or leaflet insertion.


  1. Nothing new here. Do south gloucs seriously think we all sit in stationary traffic when a convenient bus and rail service is available? Still this allows them to pack in more houses and increase Council revenue so all’s good. Bradley stoke and the surrounding area is appalling for driving but nothing fundamental ever changes.

  2. If cycling and walking are a big part of these plans, why is that the new bypass does not have a cycle lane or even pavements along most of it? I drive along it every day and regularly see both cyclists and pedestrians going up the central reservation because they have no choice. Some are mothers with buggies and primary school aged children. It is downright dangerous and the company who built the road should be ashamed of themselves!

  3. Yesterday Councillors from Almondsbury, Patchway and Filton met with the SGC Planning officer responsible for CPNN, all three councils strongly condemned the current plan to relegate the use of private cars to the bottom of the transport priorities, The plan too only have two exits from CPNN south into Bristol, the A38 at the east end of the development and Wyck Beck Rd/ Passage Rd at the west end is in the opinion of the councillors ridicules and will only add to the already very heavily congested roads in this area.
    Bristol does not have a public transport system that is fit for purpose, what we have is a very expensive unreliable service, and the BRT is a missed opportunity.
    If the CPNN goes ahead as it is, the North fringe of Bristol will become a giant car park and this will not only be at peak times, SGC need to listen to the people it represents, and for the 3 Transport leaders to say everything will be ok, is for them to put their heads in the sand and ignore the many 1000’s of ordinary people in the area who live with this problem every day.

    Chris Mills
    Labour Councillor Patchway Town Council

  4. Read between the lines: “development prioritises sustainable types of transport, such as walking, cycling and public transport, over the private car”….I can see parking permits on the horizon.

  5. It seems as if the council is burying their heads in the sand and pretending that the traffic problems will go away. This is totally irresponsible and they should be looking at building better road links as well as better bus and cycle routes.

    Glad I won’t have to live in the new estate as its going to be total gridlock!

  6. @Chris
    You are always going to get traffic jams due to the Ammount of cars that use this area but yes we need the roads sorted properly so as not to make it worse and also public transport.
    I hope the Stoke Gifford bypass will help a lot to ease the traffic around Parkway /MOD

  7. I’ve read the report, it says they aren’t addressing the roads!

    Everything but… On Yer bike Brian! Chances of them living to see 2027 are slim (oh the irony) based on Allinson’s morbid obesity, Hockey is already one hundred and two bless her, and poor old Roger is not in the best of nick either, all those pasties at the football and keeping the Ratepayers Arms open haven’t done him any good at all.

    Wonder if they’ll be allowed in Almondsbury Cemetery with the rest of us, Almondsbury Council are already worried about lack of space down there for us Patchway paupers, they don’t want more riff riff down there with them, the road to hell, coming to Patchway in your near future, you’ll never leave!

  8. Thank you Bernie, your comments made laugh. Did any of you see the link a few days ago ‘proposals for Gypsy Patch’ the Railway Bridge is to be widen, Gyspy Patch road to be made into a dual carriage way. with bus lane.

    From the comments made by the Residents they seem to be getting the same treatment at their meetings with the Council as we did. Minds already made up. SGC are just paying Lip service to the Consultation Process.

    Also Bristol Council asked SGC not to give planning permission for Stoke Gifford until the Builders had agreed to pay for road improvements at French Park Rd to the mini roundabout for Snuff Mills. SGC ignored the request and gave the permission. Minds made up again.

  9. Cheers Diane!

    Yes the fact they are even working on an extension does make me think the whole thing has been pre-determined. I still wonder about the finances of all this given the state of things and a cost-cutting environment.

    Given the gridlock suffered by the whole area regularly and only this week due to the tragic event on the M32 it really doesn’t bode well, I won’t make any capital out of that, only to express my condolensces to the lady’s son, who spoke so eloquently of his mother at such a sad time.

    As for local issues, SGC continue to ignore residents views, so what will be will be.

  10. Speak for yourself @ Bernie most of the people are or have been hard working Residents of Patchway we are not paupers by any means that’s very insulting

  11. And yes we all want the Bridge to be widened we have for a good many years the road will be made to acomadate the new Metro bus route as well as for traffic from all around plus when the Stoke gifford bypass is open
    People are trying to make it better not everyone has their eyes blinkered

  12. You are paupers in the eyes of Almondbury Town Council who don’t want you buried in their Cemetery! Fact! Go ask their man Cliff, (not Cliff Richard) who’s trying his damnedest to keep you out, the way it’s going you will have to show your will to qualify to get down there, it’s the Jersey of Cemetery’s!

    Rattle your jewellery on the way in and rattle your bones on the way out! You can’t take it with you!

    I do speak for myself Mrs Happy, with a large tongue in my mouth, you speak for the many in your multiple posts I assume? As always you are missing the point by a country mile and can’t see the wood for the trees, but, you know best, I bow to your certainties, assumptions and superior knowledge. A bloke down the pub said so it must be true. Must try harder. Right, I’m off fishing.

  13. Hi Bernie,
    you are right their man Cliff wrote a full page article in the Parish magazine warning Almondsbury residents that the huge number of houses being built on the airfield would mean that Patchway would swamp Almondsbury and their little cemetery would have to close, he even stated that in the future Patchway residents could fill the cemetery and then Patchway Town council could walk away from its responsibility, leaving little old Almondsbury with a huge bill to pick up.

    I as Chair of PTC was allowed a right of reply in the following months magazine, It seemed to be a surprise to them that the airfield and it’s 5,700 new houses are in Almondsbury NOT Patchway so they will automatically have the right to be buried in the cemetery, now every time we meet SGC reference CPNN, one of the first questions the Almondsbury delegation ask is,
    ” Has any ground in the CPNN been put aside for a Cemetery?”

    Getting back to the roads, and the future of travel in the north fringe of Bristol area, it was Norman Tebbit who said “GET ON YOUR BIKE”

    Chris Mills
    Patchway Councillor

    PS if Lorriane would like to use her proper name I would be happy to reply.

  14. @Bernie
    There is no need to be very rude I talk to people and try and get everyone’s point of view I’m not missing any point I just said don’t insult people of Patchway by calling them paupers and why would you asume I want to be buried in Almondsbury I don’t as a matter of fact

  15. I meant tongue in cheek loll y tongue in cheek. Those who get it get it, humour, black maybe, but humour. I don’t assume anyone wants to be buried at Almondsbury or anywhere, but I’d heard that Almondsbury didn’t want any more Patchway people down there, who knew??!! There are some real snobs there mind, before they meet the great leveller…

    Hence why they want a cemetery on the airfield. In a round about way it would be somehow fitting to have a Cemetery there, why not? Everybody’s got to go somewhere sometime, Personally I wanna be cremated.

    I struggle with your certainties, when in life there are actually only two. Death, and taxes. I actually got the sack for laughing about this at work, but then, I was driving the hearse.

  16. Sorry Bernie my sence of humour went some time ago
    Why do you struggle with my Certainties not everything is black and white we have little grey areas sometime

  17. As a former 25 year resident of patchway, overlooking the ‘former’ airfield, the Patchway section of the airfield {Charlton Hayes}, changed road routes, building designs went from interesting and exciting to sections sold to other developers and MANY standard template buildings. The original road plans were MAD, but Patchway Gridlock (one year 4 hours whole area gridlock), through persistence a Grant, Grant, created the link road A38 to The Mall {Bovis claims funding and building, technically the MILLIONS went into their acct, but a deceptive claim. Over many years public meeting promises were broken, designs chances, a bus lane through a roundabout so narrow and a sharp turn; impossible to use. A bus lane in, but promised link for East to West Patchway via CH has new lights at the junction with no road. So you have to drive miles out of your way, No footpath from CH to A38 stores, or up to Cribbs, no cycle route, or one ruined into insanity, like A38 MAD and accident prone overly complex excuse for a road junction.. NEVER on the plans until late. PLANNERS HAVE BOTCHED MUCH AND LIED, I MOVED AWAY with property loosing value. Promised Trees to keep cut down and houses crammed onto the area. Like the front doors onto a pavement beside the A38.. $€£¥.. All about money.. They were even forced to build a school, they wanted it built after completion {like Bradley Stoke which overwhelmed the hole areas schools}. GET WRITTEN LEGAL PROMISES TO FAKE VERBAL HOG WASH!! ITS TOO VAST A DEVELOPMENT for Filton and the CH Patchway development had Dept of Transport widen the motorway and split traffic to TWO junctions.. Then add 10,000 workers and residents. MAKE IT THE EVER PROMISED AIR MUSEUM AND A PARK AND RIDE {Near motorway and stop A38 chaos and traffic cues already. PEOPLE bully them, don’t be passive. I MYSELF FORCED A MAJOR CHANGE, every voice joining – don’t make it a HELL to live in and by. And empty offices and warehouses at Cribbs, yet Both CH Patchway AND Filton ‘airfield’ businesses and traffic too, CH didn’t get the original pedestrian, cycle or Bus Lanes. Councilors lie, developers lie.. WATCH THEM LIKE A HAWK, YOU’LL FORCE AT LEAST SOME CHANGE.

  18. Have read the previous comment at least three times but I am sorry but am unable to understand the detail of what is written. Don’t me wrong I get the gist of the message, but the detail is not written with any logical continuity, asking and answering questions haphazard throughout.

    Yes, I agree the whole CH development is a complete shambles and seriously tempting to move well away from the area before the current planning/building regime results in 24 hours gridlock.

  19. I also found that piece very strange but interesting at the same time.
    I have found the new build on the old Northfield site very different from other Developments I have seen in this country it might not be to every ones taste but they must have something as they sale very fast.
    Yes I agree the roads do need to be built before and footpaths but if you look they are building a new footpath for people to walk to the Mall and Cribbs Causeway .
    as for the new Museum its going to be built

  20. Filled it in, I don’t know how much notice SGC will take, as they ignored Patchway residents wishes regarding Highwood Rd, so why should they take notice of a survey,

    the whole Streetcare system that SGC have adopted is to move as much as they can to Town and Parish councils and remove any help given to the said councils, and then charge for things if you want them back.

    Chris Mills
    Patchway Town councillor

  21. Chris
    Bring these issues to the attention of our local MP.

    Patchway and the Rodway road area is about to undergo huge development.
    One of the planned first phases of that development is to relocate the town council and the community centre to the patchway fire station building and we are lead to believe that will be very soon.
    So why are we spending funds now on painting the community centre when its about to be knocked down to build a block of 26 flats ? spend the money of some litter bins and a parking attendant.
    Rodway road/Patchway Hub is the busiest area in the whole of the Patchway .

    It has the Hub, one stop SGC centre, a health centre, community centre, 2 schools, town council office, 5 take-a-ways, post office, 24hr cash point, 6am – 10pm local shop.
    And you see less of the street care team now than you did 5 years ago ! It would be interesting to apply for freedom of information and see how much of the street care team are mangers and admin staff and how many are operatives, just to see where the funds are spent.

  22. Gary

    Your/My Mp knows what is going on, Town and Parish councils are being asked to take up the slack created by central Government cuts to councils like SGC.

    SGC used to supply Patchway Town council with a skip, that was stored in Scotts park, PTC ground staff used to “Litter pick” around Patchway (this included any fly tipped rubbish) and SGC would empty the skip. SGC gave us 14 days notice that they were removing the skip, we had to find an alternative way, so we now hire a skip and pay to have it empted, it seems ridiculous but PTC are not allowed to use the sort-it site in Little Stoke.

    PTC have taken on several duties from SGC, these all cost time and money to undertake, at this time we have been able to absorb these costs without increasing Council Tax, by working smarter and opening up the skill base of our ground staff, but 6 men can only do so much. SGC are moving away from the services we need, to concentrate on services they are legally bound to do. to give you an example, they do not have a legal duty to supply dog poo bins, but if dog poo is on the pavement they have a legal duty to clear it up.
    That is why PTC took the decision to empty the dog poo bins in Patchway last year, rather than have them all removed.

    As for the new town centre, I have been involved in that since late 2013, unfortunately I don’t think it will be as soon as you seem to suggest, the Health Clinic has another 10 years on its lease and if or when the Fire Station is sold, it will be for market value.

    Chris Mills
    Patchway Town Councillor

  23. Chris,
    I fully understand that funding is being cut and PTC have taken on more from SGC and PTC have to prioritise its services and staff.
    I have lived in Patchway for 25 years.
    Rodway road is :- hands down -: the busiest area of Patchway, its where local residents come to use local services and with the increase in housing and new residents from the new development, which is happening now, this use will increase very rapidly.
    A higher priority needs to be put on this area, street care and more litter bins in the right places, the old British legion is being used for fly tipping, parking issues lack of policing of parking restrictions causing anti-social behaviour.
    This area is the focal point of Patchway but the experience of a visit is spoiled by the above issues.

  24. @Chris Mills “if or when the Fire Station is sold, it will be for market value”

    What’s your point? Any property on the market can only fetch market value?

  25. Gary.

    I too have lived in Patchway for 26 years and I agree Rodway Rd has always been the centre of Patchway, the hub has made Rodway very busy, the Town council are working with partners to try and ensure Rodway road stays the Town centre.

    The old British Legion site I believe is to be put on the market sometime this month, the Town council are looking to improve Rodway Rd with the limited funds available to them and have pushed SGC to change the parking layout and time limit, the area then needs to be policed to enforce the limit

    Chris Mills

  26. Fire station won’t be ‘gifted’ there was early hope it would be left in situ for local re-use as best possible, ditto Legion sale, Pall Mall sucking all the money out for central funds and no return or support for local veterans or community.

    Change can’t come soon enough but the money is going out, not coming in, doubly hard with SGC dumping service provision. Thankless task in these times, respect to those in the centres and community who are trying, I don’t envy them. Some interesting thoughts on staffing levels in SGC, too many paid councillors for a start, let alone Amanda Deeks salary!

  27. I can’t see any SGC/PTC change coming to the Rodway road Patchway new centre area for 10 years.
    Developers will buy up small areas of land , like the legion, like the fire station and build blocks of flats and as long as the blocks are no bugger than the Hub, planning will give the ok.

    So you’ll have more residents, more cars, more mess in the streets around the Hub as more residents try and access the Hub services. 8000 new homes going up now ! and a big %%%% of the new residents will use the services of the Hub,,,,, SGC seem to think that the 20 space car park is fine.

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