Village Concerns re unfit for purpose roads; speed and bridge

Seniko

12, Nursery Drive,

Moreton On Lugg,

Hereford.

HR4 8DJ.                                                                                        20th May 2018.

Dear Sir,

It is with great concern that I put pen to paper to draw your attention to what I consider to be an increasing problem caused by the use of HGV vehicles travelling both ways along country lane that runs from Marden through the village of Moreton On Lugg and eventually onto the A49 trunk road.

I am a retired Police Officer of the West Mercia Constabulary, much of my service being spent on the traffic department. These are my personal observations.

 A majority of the vehicles are forty ton articulated HGV’s. It appears that a large majority of the vehicles are owned by S&A of Marden and vehicles servicing their depo.

Firstly, I draw you attention to the severe degradation of the carriageway on the approach to the village of Moreton On Lugg and the Lugg river bridge from the direction of Marden, it appears that a considerable amount of patching has gone on in the past, in places the sides of the road are completely broken down, the double yellow lines have been completely obliterated and only when a complete resurfacing project is undergone will the road be fit for purpose. 

Secondly, the bridge over the river Lugg has a Heritage listing Grade 2 [1099255] and could go back to the 16th century and as such deserves better, it was built for a horse and cart not forty ton articulated lorry’s, it is to my knowledge that the Hereford Council have been called upon to carry out repairs to the bridge in the past, [see photographs showing damage]

The carriageway at the point of the river bridge when travelling from Marden forms a bend to the right the view of approaching traffic is obscured, in effect it is a blind bend and not conducive to HGV’s.

Almost immediately after the river bridge there is a railway line crossing the carriageway controlled by warning lights and a barrier level crossing, this is by it’s very nature is a cause for concern, I have seen lorry’s travelling in convoy, it only needs one to get caught out to cause disruption to the railway system and there is always the potential of something much worse.

At the commencement of the village built up area there is a Mandatory 30 MPH speed restriction sign, the carriageway at this point is no more than a country lane and forms a series of bends, along this particular part of the road there is no footpath on either side, I have seen mothers pushing prams along here, I have yet to see a situation on the road where mothers pushing prams and HGV’s mix successfully, this as I see it is a massive road safety issue.

The carriageway then straightens out and there are several junctions that lead to residential properties, visibility from many of these junctions is restricted and extreme caution must be exorcised when joining the main carriageway. 

In the village there is a Premier food store, to access it a majority of the elderly  village occupants have to cross the road, this is yet again a road safety issue and needs to be addressed, perhaps the introduction of a pedestrian crossing or a 20 MPH speed limit would be the answer.

Situated in the village is a very popular fish and chip shop, during opening times this facility attracts a large number of people and an influx of vehicles and the HGV situation is still there and road safety issues once again arise.

 I draw your attention now to the general condition of the carriageway through the village, it is appalling, not just the odd pot hole or so, it’ like a ploughed field a motor cyclists night mare. I do not intend to labour this point as I understand that a resurfacing program is taking place this year. My concern is that once the new surface has been laid, how long will it last with the continued abuse by HGV’s. 

There is a problem of speeding vehicles in the village, a point that has been brought to my attention by many people. It is an issue that is manifesting itself with vehicles across the board from motor cycles to HGV’s. I would like to see representation made to the Police for an occasional radar speed check, perhaps that and would help matters. Personally, I would like to see an illuminated actual speed reminder sign to motorists regarding their speed, similar to that in many local villages.        

Perhaps the most important point of this letter is to draw your attention to the amount of noise and air pollution being caused to the population of the village by these vehicles, I refer to Nitrogen Oxide [NOX] and how many of these lorries are fitted with an Emulator which makes the pollution much worse, in addition consideration must be given to the school children being forced to endure this pollution and dust kicked up by them while waiting for the school bus. 

This is an agricultural area and the road through the village is used by the local farming community as one would expect. I do think in the interests and wellbeing of the local community the practice of using the main road through the village as a rat run for HGV’s should be seriously looked at.

All Highway Authorities are required by law to ensure that their roads are designed, constructed and maintained so that they are safe and fit for purpose.

 Their statutory duties are contained in several Acts of Parliament. A question I think that must be asked at this point is.’ Is this country lane fit for forty ton articulated lorries or not.      

Your thoughts on the matters I have raised would be much appreciated, I understand that the Transport Industry have to operate but not at the expense of road safety and above all the peace and tranquillity that is the back bone of the communities of Herefordshire.

Yours Sincerely

T.R. Davis.

Cc        Bill Wiggin, House of Commons

            Hereford Council

           Moreton On Lugg Parish Council

Second Phase Consultation – Community Governance Review

 

Second phase of consultation for the Moreton-on-Lugg

Community Governance review is now underway

(11 May – 22 June).

community governance review considers arrangements for parish councils such as creating, merging, altering or abolishing parish councils, changing a parish council’s boundary or the naming of parish councils and their electoral arrangements.

From 13 February to the 6 April, Herefordshire Council conducted a parish wide consultation with the community of Moreton-on-Lugg parish in connection with their community governance review.  During that consultation, Moreton on Lugg Parish Council noted that there are a small number of properties affected by a border anomaly. It was proposed that the properties would be better represented in the neighbouring parish of Wellington.  Following the first round of consultation the balance of evidence indicates that there are sufficient grounds to progress to formally proposing that the boundary anomaly affecting a small number of properties adjacent to the A49 near Marsh House farm and Westfields be reviewed and addressed. This will necessitate a minor ward boundary change between the Sutton Walls and Queenswood ward.

You can access and respond to the second phase consultation by going to:https://www.herefordshire.gov.uk/consultations/article/10088/moreton_on_lugg_community_governance_review_phase_two_consultation

A printable copy of the consultation is also attached.

The second phase consultation closes on 22 June

THE TESCO GRANT FOR THE PLAY AREA

The order for the new equipment has been placed and installation in the Play area should start early November 2016. A photograph of the presentation of the Grant cheque by Tesco and a short report has been submitted to The Hereford Times. For more detailed information on the progress of the project please read Moreton-on-Lugg Parish council minutes.

​The Parish Council have secured a grant from Tesco’s for much needed work on the
​Perkins Play Area in the village.

The final installation of swings and an aerial runway in the Moreton Play area is now complete. Special thanks go to the following organisations who have made this project possible: Tesco Bags of Help for the grant funds. Groundwork UK the organising body and Playquest provider of equipment and installation.

Tesco has teamed up with Groundwork to launch its Bags of Help initiative in hundreds of regions across England and Wales.
​Bags of Help website www.tesco.com/bagsofhelp

Moreton on Lugg Parish Council Perkins Play Area – Annual report 2015/16

The Perkins Play Area continues to be a popular facility to both adults and children of Moreton -0n-lugg. The facility provides a maintained children’s play area, including a double swing, a fully equipped and maintained junior football pitch, a basketball court and maintained pathways through the wood.
Once again, this year, considerable time, monies and effort have been put into the play area to ensure, wherever possible the safe and enjoyable use of this facility.

General maintenance/improvements although no specific improvements have been made this year general maintenance and repair have been carried out on a regular basis to cut costs but still provide a safe environment.

Future plans:
Removal of remainder of felled trees. (ongoing)
Strimming/clearance of pathways
Re-marking of football pitch

Tesco bags of help – the successful application for a grant of £10k will see the arrival and installation of an aerial slide and a set of adult swings, sometime in July.

Vandalism mindless vandalism costs us, as tax payers money; the following list is an indication of the type of vandalism that goes on in the park on a regular basis:
Cutting of the perimeter fence
Swinging on the goal posts and net supports (the net supports have been welded twice this year)
Swing seats looped over the top bar
Basketball nets destroyed
Small fires
Litter strewn over the park and in the woods

Wardens pet hates
Dog owners who do not collect their dog waste and leave their dogs to foul the area, particularly the paths in the wooded area!!

Thank you to the following people for their help this year:

Roger Peter David Terry Adrian Richard



TO RECEIVE AN UPDATE FROM THE PLAY PARK WARDEN
(7.1) Annual Playground Inspection with Fran White – Cllr Browne requested that he accompany the Inspector on the annual Playground Inspection.

(7.2) Update on Tesco Bags of Help Grant – Cllr Browne explained that the voting was taking place in Ledbury branch of Tesco and finishes this weekend. It is hoped to have a decision by the end of March when, depending on the amount awarded, it can be decided what new equipment can be purchased for the play area.

The insurance implication of the new equipment was discussed and it was agreed to defer this until the outcome of the grant application was known. In the meantime, disclaimer notices are prominent within the park and the surrounding area.

Sincere thanks were expressed by Councillors to Cllr Brown for all his efforts in applying for this grant and his continued support to the play area.

Cllr Browne handed round a list of outstanding jobs that needed to be carried out in the park within the next few weeks – weather dependant – and asked for volunteers from Council and those parishioners present to help him complete these tasks.

The monthly inspection of equipment has been recorded as satisfactory.
A short list of items needed to be purchased for general maintenance was discussed and it was agreed that Cllr Browne could go ahead and purchase these items and he would be reimbursed the outstanding £90.40 at the next meeting.

Trees in Play Area and along boundary fence
Cllr Browne outlined his concerns regarding the trees in the Play Area and along the boundary fence. It is paramount that the area is safe for use and at the moment he has serious concerns that there are hang-ups in the very tall trees – some over 60’ high which need urgent attention. The boundary trees which over hang Church House Farm fields also need urgent attention before they are blown down destroying the boundary fencing.

Cllr Brown has received one set of quote from Ross Tree Services – for the overhanging 9 tress to be pollarded and made safe = £900 and for the 14 trees within the wooded area itself = £1350.00 again for pollarding and any necessary safety measures.

This was discussed at length – it was acknowledged that there had been funds set aside within the financial budget for 2016/17 for any necessary tree work.

It was agreed that a second quote was required – but it was proposed and unanimously agreed that if the quote from Ross Tree Services was the lower – that Cllr Browne could go ahead and award the contract to Ross Tree Services before the next meeting. The work, although weather dependant, would then get underway before the spring leaf growth takes hold.
Resolved: Clerk and Cllr Browne to liaise once second quotes are available.
7. TO RECEIVE AN UPDATE FROM THE PLAY PARK WARDEN
(7.1) Annual Playground Inspection – it was agreed to procced with the Annual Inspection as outlined in Fran White’s email at a cost of £50.60 + VAT – however, it was requested that the goal posts be included in the inspection and that photographs used in the report are updated.

Resolved: Clerk to confirm

(7.2) Perkins Area Inspection – all serviceable – see report attached.
(a) Football nets have been removed in an to attempt to preserve the goal areas during the very wet weather.
(b) Fallen branches have been removed from pathways but there is storm damage in the wooded areas – suggest notice put up warning walkers that there are some hanging branches overhead.
(c) Minor repairs have been made to both goal areas – but further reseeding/turfing will be required in the Spring.
(d) Cllr Browne explained that he had applied for a Tesco grant – and had received a favourable acknowledgement that the application had been shortlisted. Cllr Browne will liaise with the clerk for the required supporting paperwork and will re-submit for final consideration by the panel.

The grant application specifies the need for three additional pieces of play equipment suitable for the over 12 age range. Cllr Browne will get the various quotes needed to support the application.

Future plans: there will be a lot of work to be carried out in the spring and Cllr Browne is hoping to get a ‘working party’ to help him – agenda item for March.

Trees – it was not thought necessary to have a full Tree Survey this year.
However, it was agreed that Councillors would meet before the next meeting for a general inspection and bring their findings back to the next meeting – agenda item for March.

There is still fire wood available – it was suggested that this be advertised – may be in the Newsletter or on a notice board at the entrance to the play area.

Resolved: Clerk to liaise with Cllr Browne re Tesco grant