Tag Archives: Richmond Council

New 20mph Zone in Twickenham

20mph on Heath Road (on both sides)

20mph sign

And we’re off! Or, maybe we aren’t ‘off’. Or, maybe that’s the wrong thing entirely. As usual, what do we know? Well, one thing we do know is that the signs to create a 20mph zone in Twickenham town centre are going up. Having a 20mph limit in the central area is a good idea although there will be those that argue that it’s generally not possible to get much above 20mph anyway. For them, 20mph may be an aspiration rather than a limitation. But along with the 20mph signs on the principal routes are the signs on the side roads to remind drivers that it’s back to a 30mph maximum once you leave the main drag.

The 20mph limit is part of the Twickenham Action Plan. Having the signs close to the centre may not simply slow traffic down, it can also serve as a reminder to drivers that there’s something to slow down for. Whether it has much impact on traffic flow or congestion remains to be seen, if you’re stuck in a queue on Heath Road, Richmond Road or Cross Deep then 20mph might feel like a dream. Either way, we reckon reducing speeds in the busy junction that is Twickenham town centre is a good thing.

What’s a bit more tricky is that once you’re off the main routes then you’re back to the usual 30mph limit. We understand the rationale, namely that if it’s no longer a 20mph zone then drivers need to know but the appearance of these signs seems a tad strange especially when the roads in question are smaller, residential side streets. Do we want drivers to put their foot down (even if it’s subconsciously) once they’ve made a turning into, for example, Queens Road or Grosvenor Road. Surely a 20mph limit throughout a central zone would be more appropriate? And it might even involve fewer signs.

El Brute are amenable to giving consideration to more 20mph zones in the borough but, as we reported previously, it was all a bit less straightforward than you might expect. But the Council have started to give more publicity to the 20mph option and, with the growing profile of 20mph campaigns nationally as well as locally, it might not be too long before LBRuT are rooting around for the Tippex and a black marker pen to change those new 30mph signs into 20s.

And in the meantime, we do have a teeny concern that some of the new signs might not be ‘optimally located’ when viewed against other street furniture and the verdant forested plains of central Twickenham. What do you think?

This seems clear enough!

20mph on Heath Road (on both sides)

20mph on Heath Road (on both sides)

As does this…

New 20mph signs... by crossing

New 20mph signs… by crossing

Ah, so there were traffic lights lurking behind it after all.

So there are lights behind it after all!

So there are lights behind it after all!

Normal service has been resumed… in this residential street

30mph for Queen's Road

30mph for Queen’s Road

And here’s one we hid earlier. It’s time to dig out the pruning shears.

LINKS:
* Previously on twickerati (Is 20 plenty?)
* EL Brute 20 mph page
* 20s Plenty campaign

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Filed under Council, Local Issues & News, Twickenham Action Plan

Heatham House Improvements

Heatham House Youth Centre

Heatham House Youth Centre

Remember the great Heatham House debate of early 2012 when El Brute (aka LBRuT) asked ‘da kids’ to vote on the future of the centre? At the time the Council were hoping that the youth would opt to ditch HH in favour of a new purpose built, ‘state of the art’ centre which would (probably) have been on somewhere on the Twickenham sorting office site. Despite the Council consultation being worded in a way to strongly suggest that staying in that old building would not be the best option, the voting went in favour of staying put. Cue much discussion about the narrowness of victories, lobbying, etc but, as we know, the Council loves a good ol’ consultation and so it stuck with the majority view. There was even a ‘sour grapes’ press release to confirm that the youth centre would stay where it is.

Two years on and things look a little brighter. El Brute has just announced that it will spend £500,000 on Heatham House to improve facilities there, including tackling the Disability Discrimination Act compliance issues associated with the building. The Council’s website says that the work will include: redesigning the stage to create more floor space; proving a purpose built fitness suite; a new extension which will house an office, reception and social area; new showers and disabled toilet facilities; other equipment and soundproofing upgrades.

Heatham House remains a popular facility with young people in the area and now, with all this money being spent upgrading the building, it looks as if the boutique hotel suggested for the site will just have to wait a little longer.

LINKS:
* El Brute
* Heatham House

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New Sign Planned To Put Twickenham On The Map

Richmond Council will promote the Borough’s various ‘villages’ by using a Hollywood style sign on Richmond Hill. The aim is to increase awareness of the different parts of the borough by erecting 45 foot high letters spelling out the name of each village. Twickenham is first to go and the sign will stay in place for two months before being replaced by Teddington in June. Richmond itself is next in line for the treatment. Plans to follow that with East Sheen have been put back until 2015 as the Council grapple with the thorny problem of how best to represent the space between the words ‘East’ and ‘Sheen’. A consultation on this point will take place and will be followed by an online referendum and a substantial delay.

Of the plans, a Council spokesperson said, “The wonderful view from the top of Richmond Hill is very famous and, quite rightly, protected. This new scheme gives borough residents something to enjoy when looking back up at the Hill. Passengers taking off and landing at Heathrow airport will also be able to see this iconic new landmark and we hope it will encourage new visitors to our towns. At night the lettering will be picked out in green neon. It’s a win win arrangement for the Borough of Richmond”.

The consultation opens on 1st April with full details available on El Brute’s newly revamped website.

So, will this put Richmond on the map or is it just another gimmick? Have your say below.

Another proposal to put Twickenham on the map

Proposal to put Twickenham on the map

UPDATE: In a press release dated 11.59am on 01/04/14 Richmond Council announced that after a backlash from residents on Richmond Hill the plans have now been shelved.

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Filed under Local Issues & News, Pix of the Week, Random Stuff

New Pavements, New Flats and Twickenham TWAPs

Twickenham Action Plan Update

We haven’t talked about the TWAP for a while. Just as well, some might think. But guess what, others might take the view that it’s time for a bit of an update, and so here we are…
What with temporary lights flashing away in red, amber and green, an influx of hi-viz clothing, plenty of repetitive noise and crash barriers to keep people from straying into dangerous areas you’d be forgiven for thinking Twickenham was at the heart of some kind of early rave scene revival. But before you dig out your whistle and do that silly round-and-round wavy thing with your hands we’d like to reassure you that that’s not what’s going on. All that stuff? It’s the Twickenham Area Action Plan In Action, obviously.

Some TWAP work going on

Some TWAP work going on

Continue reading

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Floods: Council Information Page & a Dose of Community Spirit

And again on Monday...

Twickenham Embankment

El Brute has responded to the current flood risk by creating a page on its website on all things flood related. Some areas of the borough are at risk, namely riverside properties in Teddington, Hampton and Hampton Wick. Residents identified as most at risk will receive sandbags. The page gives additional details about sandbags, helplines and provides links to advice and information sources. And of course, with all that water in the Thames plus some high tides we can also expect to see plenty of the wet stuff sloshing around Twickenham Embankment and Riverside too.

So, we’ve seen Cameron, Clegg and Ed Minibrand all don waders for a photo opportunity. The question on everyone’s lips must surely be, “When will we see the Blue Baron doing the same?”. Watch this space. Meanwhile the Council’s flood risk strategy consultation is still open for comments.

LINKS:
* Richmond Council Flood Page
* Previously on twickerati: El Brute consulting on flood risk strategy

AND THERE’S MORE… HOW’S THIS FOR COMMUNITY SPIRIT?
Those friendly folks at Arthurs Restaurant on Twickenham Green are collecting food and drinks to take to people in Shepperton who have been flooded out. If you have something you’d like to donate then drop it off at Arthurs. They’ve already taken one van load down there and will be taking their second delivery on Saturday. Make sure you take any donations there by 3.00pm on Saturday 15th Feb, and ideally between 2.00pm and 3.00pm on that day. We’re guessing the flood victims won’t have much, or indeed any power, so bottled drinks and food that doesn’t need cooking might be best?

ARTHURS LINKS
https://twitter.com/ArthursTwick or http://www.arthursonthegreen.co.uk/

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Water? No thanks! Council Flood Risk Strategy Consultation

High tides in Twickenham

High tides in Twickenham

Water. Bloody brilliant, isn’t it? You can drink it, give it to plants, take a shower in it and even heat it up to help make a Pot Noodle. Apparently, some people use it in toilets in their homes rather than use their neighbour’s garden. Fascinating. H2O, it really is a versatile element. It’s the perfect combination of oxygen and, err, helium. And with all that helium it’s no wonder that if you drink too much of it – in the form of beer – then you end up talking in a silly squeaky voice. Older readers may recall hydrogen being used as the preferred ingredient for water but, after the Hindenburg disaster in 1937, this was deemed too dangerous for public consumption. Despite its uses, water’s not so good when there’s absolutely loads of it – and mucky stuff at that – and it gets into your carpet or your parked car. We’ve seen it happen and when it does it’s called flooding and flooding can be right royal pain.

Flooding has many causes. It’s often caused by too much rain or by high tides or by leaving the bath running. Often it’s a combination of all three. And of course if you live in Henley it can be caused by David Silvester the local UKIP councillor writing to complain to David Cameron who’s just got a gay marriage… to a man. Continue reading

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