4 January 2010

Extending 63 bus to Honor Oak Park & traffic management on Forest Hill Rd

Like other daily users of bus services in Peckham Rye we want a local transport system that meets the needs of local people. One improvement that we’ve been campaigning for is the extension on the 63 bus to Honor Oak Station. We’ve asked residents about this on the doorstep, through a bus survey and we were also delighted when Val Shawcross, the local Labour London Assembly Member spent time in Peckham Rye talking to residents about local bus services.

Val has now submitted a suggestion for the extension of the number 63 bus route to Network Planners at TfL buses. This will now be considered when they look at reconfiguring bus services around the new East London Line train services – this may allow for some local changes/improvements despite previous responses that the extension was not possible on cost grounds.

During our conversations with local residents we’ve heard a great deal of concern expressed about whether extending the 63 service to Honor Oak Park might reduce its frequency - so Val will be asking for reassurances about this.

The other issues that have come up time and time again are the problems of heavy traffic, parking, speeding and often dangerous driving on Forest Hill Road, particularly corner near Cabrini school. Alongside Cllr Aubyn Graham we’ve been pressing these concerns with the Community Council Transport sub-committee and council officers for some time. Many residents are worried that adding a 63 bus to these problems, without adding in additional traffic safety measures, could increase the problems so it needs to be carefully thought through.

There is a strong case for better traffic control at the junction with Brenchley Gardens, extending the lollipop lady’s hours (she doesn’t cover the nursery changeover at lunchtime or after school activities), and a pedestrian crossing at the top of the hill where it’s a real nightmare to cross with cars whizzing round the corner and where children from both Cabrini and Fairlawn cross.

So that’s the situation as I see it. We’ll be pressing for an extension of the 63 bus route, but only alongside a campaign for the protection of its frequency, sensible traffic management and good new crossing points. Further updates on this campaign will be posted here as soon as we get some progress.

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