Tuesday, November 20, 2012

A Tale of Two Woodfords

If you go down to Woodford Avenue today
You’re sure of a big surprise
For every bus stop that ever there was
Has an off road cut-in for certain because
The "hard pressed" motorist wants to keep on mooooving!

Except when they want to park, of course! Now let’s relocate to a different Woodford – Woodford Bridge. This was the scene before the latest “improvements”.

The 275 and W14 bus stop was located in a one-way slip road which bypassed the roundabout. It was off the main road so buses stopping there did not cause any hold ups to traffic flow and the “hard pressed” motorist could go about his/her business with a smile on their face and a mobile phone at their ear.

However this bus stop has now been moved onto the main road where it will cause traffic delays to the “hard pressed” motorist. I can hear their wails of victimisation already.

The “bus stop” only just fits between the end of the traffic light zig-zag markings and the junction with the slip road. Note also the proximity of the central reservation and street clutter bollard. In fact the bus stop road marking only just accommodates one bus as can be seen in the slide show, so what happens when two turn up at once I have yet to witness. You can also see that the traffic passing the stationary bus has to cross the central zig-zag line and the “no entry” central hatching before performing a sharp left and then right manoeuvre to approach the roundabout. These picture were taken during the afternoon before the Mum run when traffic is very light.

The old bus stop in the slip road has now been converted into additional car parking much to the joy of the traders there. But get this ….. Here’s the explanation of the change from TfL (the consultation is now closed) via “Knowsie” the emphasis being mine …
Bus service proposal: route 275 - Overview 
Following discussions with London Borough of Redbridge, we are proposing to divert route 275 to operate direct via Chigwell Road to Manor Road instead of via Cross Road towards Barkingside.
Currently route 275 serves the stops in Chigwell Road and Cross Road, towards Barkingside only, before turning left into Manor Road. It has been experiencing delays in both Chigwell Road and Cross Road due to parked cars. Route 275 already runs direct via Manor Road and Chigwell Road towards Walthamstow. The stop on Chigwell Road has already been moved onto the main road. The stop on Cross Road would no longer be served by route 275, but would still be served by route W14.
We are proposing this change to avoid delays encountered when running via Cross Road and therefore give a better overall service for passengers.

Journey times for through passengers travelling towards Barkingside would decrease as a result of the direct routeing.

Incidentally the last picture in the slide show above shows a 275 bus in the distance in Chigwell Road. It is not moving. It is stuck due to parked cars and oncoming traffic.

So, the reason for the change is that “hard pressed” motorists have been clogging up the public highway with their parked cars, otherwise known as “street clutter”, which causes buses to re-route which in turn causes congestion and delay to other “hard pressed” motorists. I’ll bet you they don’t see it that way though and will be complaining bitterly about the bus stop getting in their way and lengthening their journey times without a second thought for the way they lengthen the journey times for bus users.

This is a meassage for petrol heads: You can’t have the right to park your cars on the public highway willy nilly wherever and whenever you like AND expect to have a clear road to get you from A to B when YOU want it. Got That?


  1. Unparalleled stupidity! If cars were obstructing the short length of the slip road then the most obvious solution would have been to designate it as a bus lane, enforced by CCTV.

    However, there are not likely to be many instances of 2 buses at the new stop at the same time. One of them is operated by First Group and subject to frequent curtailments before reaching Woodford Bridge, much to the inconvenience and irritation of potential passengers.

  2. "you are not stuck in traffic - you are traffic"