East of Bath Park and Ride

The argument about a Park and Ride for the East of Bath has been running since before I arrived in Bath in 1985. So not an easy one to solve. However during 2011 to 15 when the Liberal Democrats were running the Council we were developing a rail based park and ride option with a new station at Bathampton.

The new Conservative administration has scrapped this idea because it is complicated and will  cost more and reverted to using the Bathampton Meadows.

Please sign our petition to force them to consider the rail based option at THIS LINK


Council supports sustainable transport

Bath & North East Somerset Council has provided a new charging point for electric vehicles in South Wansdyke Sports Centre car park in Midsomer Norton.

The charging unit enables two cars to charge at once, each using one of the 32amp/7kw fast charge sockets which provide a full recharge from empty in about four hours.

The unit has been funded through the Local Sustainable Transport Fund – a Government grant for a package of measures aimed at improving sustainable transport options. It is hoped the charge point will encourage electric vehicle use, lower emissions and improve air quality in the area.

Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Cabinet Member for Transport, Cllr Caroline Roberts (Lib Dem, Newbridge) said: “Electric vehicles are more environmentally-friendly than fossil fuel-based vehicles, so the Council is pleased to be supporting the use of them through electric charging points. This is a definite bonus for air quality and we hope people will make the best possible use of them.”

Further charge points will be installed at other locations including the Fox and Hounds car park in Keynsham and Newbridge Park and Ride in early 2015. Other public charge points already available across Bath and North East Somerset include Odd Down and Lansdown Park and Ride sites, Charlotte Street car park in Bath and the University of Bath.

The website www.sourcewest.info maps all of the publicly available charge points as well as providing information about electric vehicles. There is also a Source West smartphone app run by Charge Your Car that enables you to check charge point locations and availability while on the move.

Work to improve pedestrian and cycle links around Queen Square

The Liberal Democrat administration of Bath and NES continues to invest in cycling and walking schemes around the authority. In Bath of course these will be fitting in with the new transport strategy
Following Bath & North East Somerset Council’s successful completion of the rejuvenation of Queen Square’s gardens in December, work to improve connections for pedestrians and cyclists around the square is expected to begin at the end of January 2015.

This will see the creation of a new pedestrian island and cycle link, including a section of the pavement lowered at the north west corner of the square at the junction with Queen Square Place. It will provide a more direct route for cyclists travelling north and south between the Weston area of Bath through Royal Victoria Park and the city centre or Bath Spa station.

The new pedestrian island is also designed to be removable to enable two or three sides of the square to be closed to traffic for temporary events and celebrations. It is hoped the 2015 Boules Festival will be the first to benefit from this new facility.

Work is expected begin at the end of January and is scheduled to be completed within two to three weeks. Traffic will flow in two directions on the north side during this temporary period in order to minimise disruption.

You can find out more about the Queen Square Rejuvenation at: www.bathnes.gov.uk/queensquareproject.

20 mph for Radstock/ Westfield set for start

New 20 mph speed limits initiated by Bath & North East Somerset Council are due to commence construction in Radstock/ Westfield in September, in response to requests from residents to make streets safer for people on foot and on bicycles. Works to provide poles, signs, and road markings will commence from Monday 1st September 2014. The speed limit follows extensive consultation with all communities and the approval of Traffic Regulation Orders by the Cabinet Member for Transport. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents estimates that a pedestrian has a ninety per cent chance of surviving being hit by a car at twenty mph, falling to a fifty per cent chance at 30 mph and to ten per cent at 40 mph.

Further information about the timetable and proposed order for introducing the limits on the Council’s website on www.bathnes.gov.uk/20mphspeedlimit or email transportation@bathnes.gov.uk or call 01225 39 40 41.

Two Tunnels – new access route





From right to left Cllr Sharon Ball, Sarah Moore, Cllr Will Sandry, Cllr Paul Crossley









The Two Tunnels cycle route has been an amazing new cycle link in Bath. It was built in partnership between National Lottery, Sustrans, BathNES Council and the Two Tunnels Group. The cycling connectivity through Bath is getting truly awesome. The Liberal Democrat run Council of the last few years has been investing in cycle links and paths and also joining up different paths. Just a few weeks ago we opened the new link from Batheaston to Bathampton. Now we are ready to oppen a new link from Claude Avenue down onto the Linear Way which leads to Two Tunnels.

These routes are not just great for cyclists and pedestrians but they also form jogging routes, dog walking routes and safe routes to schools.

Kelston Toll Road





Me at the Kelston Toll Road doing one of many interviews since the road opened.










In the awful rains at the beginning of the year the land at Kelston started slipping down the hill. At the Kelston Road the movement was going on at a dept of 7 metres and the effect on the road was to open a wide and deep crack. We had to close the road. This is a main comuter route between Bath and Bristol and the closure caused a large diversion of 14 miles to get round it. Inconvient and time consuming and it affected the village of Kelston particularly badly.

The Council started monitoring the landslip and exploring possible repairs for when the land stopped moving. The land slip did not actually stop till mid June. However during this time local business man Mike Watts wanted a temporary relief road built. He got together with the local landowner and built a temporary toll road above the landslip which opened as a Toll Road at the end of July at £2 per trip.

This was built without planning permission. Luckily the retrospective application is now coming in. The Council itself could not have done this temporary road as the construction is not upto highway standards. Still it is proving popular with motorists and from the Council point of view it is not interfering with the major repair work to the road which has now started.

The Toll road has attracted a lot of media interest from across the country and beyond. Apart from ITV, BBC and Sky there has also been a visit from German ZDF TV. Also every radio station in the area has covered the story. Mike Watts has worked well with our Highways team to ensure that safety and efficient working happens.

The full repair which will cost in the order of £2M should be complete before Christmas.

20 mph proposal parts of Bath city centre – give your view

A signs only 20 mph speed limit in Abbey/Kingsmead(part) and Widcombe(part) areas of central Bath is being proposed by the Liberal Democrat administration that I lead to improve road safety.  Local people are being given the chance to have their say about the idea in a consultation that runs until 15th March 2013. A leaflet to households in the proposed restriction area will be distributed shortly.  The Council is investing £500,000 into safer speed limits across the district. Abbey, Kingsmead and Widcombe are the next communities being given the opportunity to give their view. Many roads in the immediate city centre are already covered by a 20 mph limit. The main circuit around the city centre – the A4 Upper Bristol Road, A36 Lower Bristol Road, and A36 Pulteney Road – are largely excluded. Most roads within them are part of the consultation.

Bath city centre is the busiest location for traffic in our area. My cabinet is proposing to take action on making many of the streets safer for people on foot and who use bicycles. This will create a more pleasant, attractive environment for people to live, work, and visit. We hope people will have their say on our proposal.  The statistics are on our side. The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents estimates that a pedestrian has a ninety per cent chance of surviving being hit by a car at twenty mph, falling to a fifty per cent chance at 30 mph and to ten per cent at 40 mph.

There is further information about the timetable and proposed order for introducing the limits on the Council’s website on www.bathnes.gov.uk/20mphspeedlimit or email transportation@bathnes.gov.uk or call 01225 39 40 41.

Work on better cycle route for A4 starts

The Liberal Democrat budget presented this week continues our committment to improving cycle and pedestrian routes in the authority. The Conservatives voted against our proposals but already work has started to widen the path along the northern footway of the A4 dual carriageway, for the use of pedestrians and cyclists.  The route is on the north side of the A4 Bristol Road between the Globe roundabout and the junction of the A4 Bristol Road / A36 Lower Bristol Road. The project will take approximately 3-4 weeks.  This is one of a number of schemes by the Council to provide improved cycle routes between Bath centre and Bath Spa University, with the cycle/pedestrian route between the A4 and the entrance of the university currently under construction.

Increasing the number of people cycling and walking is good for the environment; is good for health and wellbeing; improves the safety for walkers and cyclists and allows better use of the road network for those car drivers who need to make the journey by car.


Liberal Democrats tackling congestion in Bath with Park and Ride expansion

Big expansion of Lansdown Park & Ride complete

An extra 390 spaces are now available at Lansdown Park & Ride as part of Bath & North East Somerset Council’s upgrade of the city transportation system – two weeks earlier than planned.  The Council has already extended Odd Down Park & Ride by 230 spaces and plans to expand the Newbridge site by 250 spaces in the Autumn. The number of spaces will jump some 40% from 1,990 before the extensions started to 2,860 when complete. Some 500,000 passengers use Lansdown Park & Ride every year – a number anticipated to increase as a result of the expansion.

For my Liberal Democrat administration Park and Ride and its expansion is a key component in pursuading drivers to leave their cars on the outskirts of the City and catch one of the new buses into the heart of Bath.

The extension is part of the Bath Transportation Package that will help to tackle traffic congestion, improve air quality, and provide the infrastructure needed to support new homes and jobs for local people. The projects are funded through a combination of Council and Department for Transport and represent £27 million of investment.

With nearly 50,000 cars entering Bath every single weekday this expansion will ensure there is enough space for all users who want to take the bus in as the final leg of the journey.

For information about travelling into Bath using Park & Ride go to www.bathnes.gov.uk/parkandride

The Bath Transportation Package and the full range of projects associated with it can be seen at http://www.bathnes.gov.uk/btp