Tag Archives: Wood Lane

Wood Lane Yellow Lines: the council would not do it like that

Not remotely close to the Camden Town earthquake described by Charles Dickens in Dombey and Son but one way or another, the rumblings caused by the coming of the schools to Osterley continue to be felt.

Midway on Wood Lane, Isleworth looking south

The latest wee spat is the yellow lining debacle of Wood Lane, more on that in a bit but first some reminding context.

The Mary McCleod Memorial Academy on Wood Lane is now up and being clad, due to open in a year’s time.

Digging on another part of the site for the £9 million minority sports complex has, these past days, literally caused a stink and rumours of more gruesome finds to add to the earlier commotion caused by the removal of ancient hedgerow and trees on Syon Lane.

A couple of weeks ago, approval was given to what someone described as a “delightful” looking building but what many would confirm as another bland box to become the Bolder (might as well call it the Bona) Academy. Why not pay homage to its location? Doesn’t Osterley deserve a name check with all that has been foisted?

Very few people have difficulty in accepting the new Osterley Comprehensive locating on the former United Biscuits sports ground on Macfarlane Lane; hardly touching the green stuff. Uniquely, in these parts, it will not select pupils based on religions, will accept from both gender and likely not to live as far away as those attending St Mary’s.

With some major planning applications, plenty expertise is often developed by ordinary people who at some point are likely to be affected by the ultimate decision. One common thread in all these (costly) free school applications is how the pupils will be delivered and despatched either side of the school day. The key theme in scrutiny of recent and upcoming (Green School for Boys) planning were and will be traffic impacts and should another school receive approval, there will be five schools, each with over 1,000 students within a mile and a half radius of each other.

The problem that is most likely to occur before very long is that with a local public transport accessibility level of almost zero, there will be more than a temptation to bring children to the schools by car via the already congested Syon Lane and Gillette Corner.

In planning terms there’s always mitigation, soft in most cases. School travel plans are often cited as a salve but as can be seen from the June 2017 Nishkam School West London Travel Plan, 75% of their scholars are taken by car. Travel plans often look good on paper, not able to foresee the future but appear to tick planning boxes. In reality, there is no substitute for spending money on infrastructure but this has been scant in Osterley despite the recent demands for its open space.

When the Bolder omies punted their building proposals at the Osterley and Wyke Green Residents Association’s open meeting in December 2016, attended by the leader of the council and the head of planning, a second route from Harlequin Avenue via Great West Road was included, understood and appreciated. Despite later citing Grant Way, by the time it hit planning, the only access to the school site would be from Macfarlane Lane via the already and soon to be more strained Syon Lane. The scheme’s architect gave a less than convincing and more than half assed reason as to why the much diminished route would be optimal.

So, what about the Wood Lane yellow lines that appeared with no warning on 4 August 2017? It. Was. Not. Hounslow. Council.

The pooch was actually screwed by the government quango, the Education and Skills Funding Agency contractor, BAM and installed without any local arrangement or discussion with the council. After the event, BAM’s Nishkam School project manager wrote, “I’m sorry for the trouble this has caused you and hopefully it can be fully resolved through the consultation” or in other words, “we messed up, you sort it out”.

The council’s traffic team were prepared to consult on yellow lines for Wood Lane largely due to recent haphazard parking on this narrow width and paved road, reported by residents but BAM stole their bluster.

Proper consultation will shortly take place on this proposal and until this is complete [to avoid damage to the road] the lines will not be touched but neither will they be enforceable. Residents are encouraged to respond and alternative suggestions will be considered.

TL 17.8.2017

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Filed under Education, Great West Road, H28 bus, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Parking, Planning, Road works, Roads, Schools, Traffic, Wyke Green

Syon Gate Garage Site Meeting: Report

It became a standing room only event at St Francis of Assisi Church Hall on Isleworth’s Great West Road, the last Monday night in January.

St Francis of Assisi Church Hall, Isleworth, filling up nicely with Osterley's finest

St Francis of Assisi Church Hall, Isleworth, filling up nicely with Osterley’s finest

Hounslow Council planning experts, Robert Coomber and Melek Egren were present to help clarify the application and suggest more confidence in the process that may, perhaps, have been brought in hall prior to the start of the meeting.

The 120 people present have received a summary of the evening but for those not there, the notes can be found here.

TL  6.2.2017

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Filed under Events, Great West Road, H28 bus, Housing, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Northumberland Estate, Osterley, Parking, Planning, Reports, Roads, Schools, TfL, Traffic

H28 bus to the West Mid – safe for now

Transport for London says it has “deferred making a decision on the proposed changes to route H28” and “will have further discussions with the London Borough of Hounslow about these proposed changes.”

H28s on Wood Lane Isleworth

H28s on Wood Lane Isleworth

TfL reports the outcome of last year’s consultation here:  https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/buses/e8-110-h28 .

The consultation was meant to be about improving routes to West Middlesex University Hospital following the government’s NHS cuts at Ealing Hospital last year. However, a number of folk suspect that it may have also been another austerity cuts exercise, this time with local public transport as the victim.

160406 WMUH sign

One of the TfL proposals was to reroute the E8 towards the hospital and to take the H28 out of Wood Lane, Amhurst Gardens and Twickenham Road. This would mean removing bus access to the West Mid from Spring Grove, Osterley and North Isleworth as well as other neighbourhoods in the borough .

Results of the consultation showed a very good response on the H28 from local folk and can be found on pages 5, 31-38 and 81-82 (notes from the meeting I arranged) here. They included,

  • The route needs to go to WMUH – 82 responses
  • Wood Lane needs to be served by a bus route – 68 responses
  • Generally opposed – 58 responses
  • This route is used by a number of elderly/vulnerable people who rely on it to do their weekly shop/get out and about – 56 responses
  • Will lose direct, cheap link to Tesco – 43 responses
  • H91 is not an alternative route for Wood Lane/Northumberland Estate – 29 responses
  • Northumberland Estate is not served by any other bus route and will result in a long uphill walk/walk to get other buses – 18 responses
  • Proposal will adversely affect Wood Lane residents taking children to local schools – 13 responses
  • Will increase the cost and time of my journey – 13 responses

The current route of H28 is safe, for now but this is probably because there is an election for a new Mayor for London next month and the current do nothing Mayor Johnson would not have wanted this cut in the spotlight.

H28 at Wood Lane level crossing

H28 at Wood Lane level crossing

I have spoken to Hounslow Council’s head of transport and when TfL does have these “further discussions”, I shall ensure that residents are involved and continue to do my best to represent.

TL 6.4.2016

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Filed under Council Business, Great West Road, H28 bus, London Road, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Northumberland Estate, Osterley, Public transport, Spring Grove, TfL, West Middlesex Hospital, Wyke Green

Wardabout with Hounslow Highways – Tuesday 5 April 2016 at 11.00 am to 12.15 pm

A productive little mooch around the neighbourhood north of Great West Road between Wood Lane and Syon Lane.

160405 Wardabout

Attending: Satbir and Ali from Hounslow Highways; Joyce from Hounslow Council Contracts Team; Gerry S from Syon Park Gardens; Ian T from Wyke Close; Basil M from Syon Lane; OSG Ward Councillors Tony Louki and Sheila OReilly

Following the Wardabout, Hounslow Highways have undertaken to:

  • Provide a list of actions raised within 3 working days
  • Send an updated list of full actions and outcomes of any investigations within 28 days.

These are what I noted, not all are the responsibility of Hounslow Highways, some are Transport for London which is accountable for Great West Road; matters of flytipping on private land are the locus of Hounslow Council’s Enforcement Service:

Require litter bin near entrance to 120 Wood Lane – heavy footfall to schools and the Osterley Sports Centre and Athletics Track;

Seek solution to westbound vehicle access to Syon Park Gardens from Great West Road;

Deep clean by refuges at junction of Wood Lane and Great West Road;
160405 GWRd Wood Lane detritus

Ask TfL to fix the refuge barriers damaged during recent road traffic incident;

Complete lighting works on Wyke Estate footpath from Wood Lane to opposite 141 Syon Lane;

Advise on responsibility for maintaining play area along this footpath;

Advise on sweeping and litter pick frequency for this footpath;

Unblock gulley outside 143 Syon Lane;

Unblock gulley at 141 Syon Lane/Macfarlane Lane;

Deep clean of laybys from 141 to 211 Syon Lane;

Complete lighting works reinstatement outside 145 Syon Lane;

Address ponding and flooding on to pavement from verges between 141 and 211 Syon Lane;

Upgrade road name sign at Stags Way/Syon Lane to show “leading to Crowntree Close and Wyke Close;

Report Braybourne Drive ditch flytips to LBH Enforcement, serve EPA s81 notice to owners of the ditch (Wates) and diarise regular monitoring;
160405 Braybourne ditch 01

Unblock gullies at eastern end of Braybourne Drive by fire access barrier;

Unblock gulley in courtyard of 8-20 Wyke Close;

Remove corrugated asbestos from footpath to Syon Park Gardens at side of 786 Great WestRoad;

Address pothole by the gulley outside 40 Syon Park Gardens;
160405 Pothole os 40 Syon Pk Gdns

Examine level of crossover infringement and footway parking at various addresses in Syon Park Gardens;

Place litter bin(s) by Syon Park Gardens amenity area to reduce littering;

Advise on frequency of litter picking at this location;

Remove flytip outside 830 Great West Road;
160405 Flytip os 830 GWRd

Contact TfL to encourage maintenance and protection of grass verges on Great West Road – another of Mayor Boris Johnson’s failures.

160405 GWRd verges

Ali and Joyce also made notes so this list is not exhaustive.

A range of other issues e mailed to councillors by residents unable to make the event will be forwarded to the appropriates for follow up.

TL 5.4.2016

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Filed under Great West Road, Hounslow Highways, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Roads, TfL, Traffic, Wyke Green

Some cream for Jersey Gardens

The late and great Richard M Nixon often spouted the etymological fallacy that the Mandarin word for crisis was interchangeable with the word for opportunity.

JG Sign

One of my first trips out after the council elections in May 2014 was being shown around Jersey Gardens by one of its Friends. Tales of some neglect, past failed ambitions and thieving of the ornate. Crisis? Perhaps, for some but never insurmountable.

Another alert at that time was from Councillor Theo Dennison, the council’s cabinet member for finance and other things, announcing that bids were being sought for the large pot of S106 developer planning contributions in the council’s account. Opportunity? For sure.

From my eighteen bids made on behalf Osterley & Spring Grove Ward and other parts of Isleworth in November 2014, one made it on to the May 2015 cabinet report. Theo saw the merit and £76,600 was allocated for, “Improvements, restorations and repairs to boundaries at Jersey Gardens. Sustained practical support for Friends of Jersey Gardens and other groups interested in its improvements.” Met with a little scepticism, it took a couple of emails to convince the FOJG Chairman that the cash was real before he was prepared to pow wow.

Stolen gate on St Mary's Crescent to be securely replaced

Stolen gate on St Mary’s Crescent to be securely replaced

We met on site before Christmas with Gaye from the council’s parks team, Jim and Unsa from parks contractor Carillion and John Love from Thistleworth Tennis Club, the latter to see whether there was scope to combine some joint fence works. Notes from that meeting can be found here.

Reconvening at Osterley Library in February 2016, Carillion came back with a scheme for this phase of works which was agreed by the Friends and includes:

Wood Lane to Ridgeway Road North fencing to be replaced

Wood Lane to Ridgeway Road North fencing to be replaced

  • Replacement and renovation of the most deteriorated pathways within Jersey Gardens and a cleaner and flatter ramp up to the playground area
  • Refurbishment of unused original gates currently facing Great West Road securely relocated to St Mary’s Crescent and the Ridgeway Road North access New double gates by the tennis court
  • Improved access points to the play area
  • Replacement and repair to low fencing along the Ridgeway Road North footpath and along the footpath towards Wood Lane.

These works are due to start later this month, March 2016 and other Friends and residents have also been advised via the latest newsletter which can be found here.

Jersey Gardens south eastern view with Osterley Hotel on skyline, 1932 photo courtesy of Hounslow Libraries Local Studies Section

Jersey Gardens south eastern view with Osterley Hotel on skyline, 1932 photo courtesy of Hounslow Libraries Local Studies Section

There is certainly plenty more to do to realise the long standing ambitions to restore Jersey Gardens, a unique and beautiful by product of the construction of the Great West Road in the 1920s.

Following a call for the next round of S106 bids, a request for funding of a potential second phase was made in January 2016 for,

  • Footpath illumination from Wood Lane to Ridgeway Road North
  • Improvement of paving to the playground
  • Horticulture and landscape apprentice project in conjunction with LBH Skills and Employment Team, Carillion, Hounslow Highways, National Trust, Capel Manor College and others to restore the Sunken Garden.

The outcome of this and another 16 bids (see my responses for both calls for bids here) will be shared when known later in the Spring 2016. Should there be similar success in securing funds, I shall continue to work with the Friends and others help progress further works in Jersey Gardens.

As always, happy to discuss but in the meantime, if not already a supporter, please make contact with the Friends of Jersey Gardens either by e mail to its Chairman, colinhume131@gmail.com or leave letters c/o Friends of Jersey Gardens at Osterley Library, St Mary’s Crescent, Isleworth, Middlesex, TW7 4NB.

TL 5.3.2016

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Filed under Great West Road, Leisure, Middlesex, Neighbourhoods, Osterley, Parks