Monday, 21 August 2017

Action needed on nuisance lorries, says councillor

LORRIES delivering to Goring shops are causing a hazard for pedestrians, a parish councillor has warned.

LORRIES delivering to Goring shops are causing a hazard for pedestrians, a parish councillor has warned.

David Brooker says heavy goods vehicles pull up on the pavement in High Street when making deliveries, forcing shoppers to walk in the road in order to get past.

The problem is particularly acute for people pushing pushchairs or in wheelchairs.

Councillor Brooker says the lorries are also causing potholes in the pavements which are a trip hazard.

He has come up with some possible solutions and is asking local businesses for their views.



He is also discussing his ideas with Councillor Kevin Bulmer, who represents Goring on Oxfordshire County Council.

Cllr Brooker said: “A few weeks ago I noticed a lorry parked across the access road to The Arcade in High Street. It was causing absolute chaos because other lorries were going up on the opposite pavement to get past. I saw something similar a few days later and thought, ’this isn’t right’.”

He asked the county council to install bollards but was told they would make the pavements too  narrow.

One possible solution might be to introduce loading restrictions during the day but some businesses say this would increase their costs as hauliers charge more to deliver at specific times.

A pedestrian crossing might be another option but would need money from the county council, which has a limited budget and will normally only consider such a move if a road has a poor accdient record.

Cllr Brooker said: “There is no easy solution because those deliveries need to happen. But there is a concern that people are deterred from walking along High Street because they don’t want to face vehicles mounting the pavements.

“One shopkeeper said a customer told them they’d use the village more often if they felt safer.

“The blockages cause drivers to speed because they get frustrated - they’re like a greyhound out of a trap once they can get through.

“We have to find a solution that satisfies everyone. We can’t do something that is going to affect trade, though there’s evidence that this is already affecting businesses.”

Cllr Bulmer said reducing the number of lorries coming through Goring might help.

Many HGV drivers used domestic sat navs, which direct them over the Thames at Goring even though Wallingford and Reading are more suitable.

He said the parish council could lobby the Government to make it a legal requirement for hauliers to use commercial sat navs.

Cllr Bulmer said: “I share David’s concerns because the street is looking a bit worn. Goring wasn’t built to take large traffic but those deliveries are needed.

“I don’t see why loading restrictions would be impractical. We had temporary ones when Whitchurch bridge closed last year and people got used to them.

“Unfortunately, the money isn’t in the county’s budget for repairs. I’d like to see the Government set up a road improvement fund that parishes can bid for. We’ll have to have an ongoing conversation and see what comes out of it.”

Richard Rodway, co-chairman of the Goring Gap Business Network, said: “This is a perennial issue and most complaints come from residents rather than businesses.

“There is no obvious solution but I think there are only two or three businesses that take daily deliveries.

“There’s currently no agreement about where lorries should stop so it might make sense to liaise with them and establish a suitable area.”

• What do you think? Write to: Letters, Henley Standard, Caxton House, 1 Station Road, Henley, RG9 1AD or email letters@henleystandard.co.uk



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