Posts Tagged ‘Nightingale Grove’

The wrong side of the track

March 10, 2010

Me and Cllr Andrew Milton have been pressing officers of the highways department about the lack of gritting at sensitive locations in Lewisham Central during the recent snowy and icy spells and one welcome but rather peculiar reply we received from highway officers tells us that:

The main entrance for Hither Green is in Staplehurst Road so that entrance automatically gets gritted, however, the other entrance in Nightingale Grove was not included so has only been gritted on request. We will make sure in future that both entrances to Hither Green are gritted, subject to salt stocks being available.

What makes the Staplehurst Road side the main entrance I don’t know, but the fact here exposed is that in the eyes of officialdom the Lewisham Central side of Hither Green plays second fiddle.

We have now won the promise that subject to salt stock being available it will be gritted in case of ice and snow, but this is only the start. We shall demand nothing less than full equality of status for both ends of the tunnel.

Nightingale misunderstood

February 16, 2010

As I wrote last week, I asked Lewisham Council to grit a portion of Nightingale Grove in case of ice because of accidents involving cars that skid there in that specific spot as the road is both very steep and sharply curving.

I now received their reply and amusingly it’s based on an extract of the Council’s policy on gritting for…footways!

As you may have heard on the news media, salt stocks nationally are limited and supplies are now being managed by the government – in the case of the London Boroughs this is through the London Local Authority Co-ordinating Centre and Transport for London (LLACC and TfL), rather than local councils.

All highway authorities were asked by the government, on Saturday January 9, to reduce their salt usage and the advice from the Local Government Association for all councils across the country is that this will mean restricting treatment to priority networks only. Lewisham Council is carefully managing its reserves of salt to ensure that this priority network remains clear. This includes A and B roads and emergency services priority roads. This situation remains the case at present and the above will apply should there be further snowfall in the immediate future.

Footways are not routinely treated. However, the Council does have a priority list of footways for gritting including those in major town centres and local shopping centres, footways close to heavily used areas, such as schools, railway stations, hospitals and medical centres, those designated as “safe route to school” and other locations with specific access problems. Should there be further snowfall, gritting on these footways will be resumed as soon as adequate salt supplies are available again, starting with those at the top of the priority list.

Now, I understand that in the photo I sent them the dented railing stands on a footway, but this doesn’t mean that the cars that hit on that spot were traveling on the footpath!

I really didn’t think this needed explaining. You can never take anything for granted.

Anyway, I  replied to the Highways officers clarifying that it’s the road, not the pathway, that I’m advocating gritting. I also made a stronger and more explicit case and ended with a question, because I’d really like an answer.

It is a surprisingly trafficked road for pedestrians as it’s on the route to Hither Green Station for those coming from the Courthill Road side of Hither Green, so although technically a backstreet it’s a proven accident spot for cars and has substantial pedestrian flow.
Isn’t this reason enough for gritting the road in that point so that cars don’t skid and potentially hurt someone that’s passing by?

Careful!

February 10, 2010


This is Nightingale Grove SE13, that besides being the place where in October 1917 a bomb dropped by a German Zeppelin fell killing many, is also the scene of recurrent accidents when the road freezes.

If you look at the picture you’ll notice that the railing on the left is visibly dented, that’s exactly the spot that cars hit when they skid on ice there.
It’s a sharp bend and it’s steep, the perfect condition for an accident, in fact accidents do happen there.
I emailed to the Head of Highways of Lewisham Council asking to lay some grit on that spot when ice occurs again, and I hope they’ll do it.
It’s a surprisingly trafficked back street actually, as it’s on the route to Hither Green Station for all those walking from the Courthill Road area.

I post this today because the forecast say that it may snow and freeze again and so if that happens here are my advices for Nightingale Grove:
– if you walk through it use the path opposite the railway;
– if you drive through it pay special attention;
– if you drive to it, don’t park your car in front of the dent;
– if you work for Lewisham Council and are involved with grit, please spread some there if it freezes.