Apr 042020

Residents may recall that PTGRS sent a letter outlining our concerns about the continual closures along Hammersley Lane, we are pleased to receive a letter from Bucks CC but are disappointed with their response. Please see their letter below.

Hammersley Lane, Tylers Green
Thank you for your letter dated 28th February in relation to the recent works on Hammersley Lane, Tylers Green. As you highlighted in your letter, these works required a closure and a diversion route to be implemented.
As is the case with many closures, we find that some road users do not follow the formal diversion route advertised before works start and are signposted. Residents familiar with the area will use what they consider to be the shortest route around the closure. I appreciate the difficulties this can cause on local roads around the closure point, such as Cock Lane, which would not be promoted as a suitable alternative.

As the local highway authority, we do have powers to place certain conditions on a road closure application, such as hours of working, but we do not currently have the authority to insist on additional signs to supplement a diversion route. We do sometimes ask those undertaking the work to place additional warning signs out but I am afraid that this is not something on which we can insist.
With regard to the railway bridge, this is maintained by Network Rail. They have confirmed to us that the bridge was strengthened some years ago to allow maximum weight of vehicles, this being 40 tonnes (40T). Under the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions, which dictate how Highway Authorities use road signs, there is no requirement to install signs on any bridge which takes a weight in excess of 33T, which is why no weight limit signs are present.
Network Rail has advised that the bridge is due for its next structural assessment in 2024; if for some reason they have to install a weight limit, they will liaise with us and necessary signing will be erected.

Regarding the signage along Cock Lane and the use of this road by HGVs, I can confirm a sign has been in place for a number of years on A40 London Road at the start of Cock Lane stating “unsuitable for heavy goods vehicles” and is visible on approach. In the reverse direction, coming towards High Wycombe from the direction of Tylers Green, the same sign is located by the junction of St. John’s Road. Both signs are located at the official start / end points of Cock Lane; both warn approaching HGVs that it is unsuitable for use and gives an appropriate location for them to either turn around (St Johns Road junction) or continue along London Road and use the ‘main’ roads.
There are three other signs along the length of Cock Lane advising “single track road with passing places”. All these signs are blue/white rectangular “information” signs for reference by drivers; they are not regulatory and cannot be enforced as such. In addition, HGVs may need to drive along Cock Lane for access purposes, for example for delivery of a large item. These signs combined are considered to be of a suitable number and location and further signing is not required.
Transport for Buckinghamshire (TfB) acknowledges there may be damage to some of the existing signs, or they may be obscured by vegetation, and so is arranging for an inspection to take place. Regrettably, we are unable at present to provide a specific date on which any identified repairs will be completed.

With the ongoing and rapidly changing advice regarding working practices due to the current COVID 19 crisis, there may be disruption and delay to the normal service provided by TfB and we thank you for your patience during this unprecedented and challenging period.
I hope the information provided above proves helpful.
Yours sincerely
Dave Roberts
Network Strategy Manager
Transport for Buckinghamshire

The PTGRS letter was sent to the Head of Highways at Bucks County Council in Aylesbury 28th February 2020

Road closures in Penn & Tylers Green

We appreciated your letter of 27 August 2019 in response to ours of 19 August regarding the frequent closure of Hammersley Lane in Tylers Green.  Copies of both these letters are attached for ease of reference.

 Since this exchange, we have had  two further road closures, the most recent being from 17–21 February (School half term) to allow Thames Water to connect water utilities to another new development along the lane. Many drivers ignore the diversion signs that take them around Beaconsfield (some extra 5 miles), preferring to drive down Cock Lane which is a narrow single lane with passing places.  At the lower end it has a restricted railway bridge with a weight limit which larger lorries heading to or from the A40, regularly ignore.  The resulting build up of traffic at the Tylers Green end is particularly unpalatable for those who live close to the start of the single lane section of Cock Lane.

 The Penn & Tylers Green Residents Society manages a Facebook and website for the residents and with over 1000 hits, we are acutely aware of the frustration caused by problems on these lanes.   As more houses continue to be built along Hammersley Lane the need for co-ordination of closures will continue.

We recognise that this is a temporary problem, but  it could be considerably alleviated by proper signage.   There is a sign by the crossroads of St Johns Road, Church Road and Cock Lane – saying the road is not suitable for large goods vehicles,but  there is nothing closer to the start of the single track section which is a quarter of a mile away, and there is no such sign coming up from the A40,

There is a sign saying single road with passing places at the start of our end of the narrow section but it is so dirty it is impossible to read.  The similar sign at the lower end of the narrow section has been knocked down and is lying on the kerb.  There are no signs either side of the railway bridge limiting weight of traffic.  It would also be good if it were  possible to encourage sensible driving by say advising that only 2 or 3 vehicles at a  time should use each passing place when traffic is busy.

We would therefore be most grateful  for your intervention to ensure that the necessary signage is both complete and very visible and that the co-ordination for closures is as effective as possible..

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