School Buses - Adelaide Drive, Sittingbourne
Appendices added 6.1.20
Members considered the report which provided an update on the revised school bus arrangements for Westlands School, Sittingbourne. The Chairman advised that the issues in Sydney Avenue would also be considered.
The Swale District Manager referred to the tabled papers for this item and explained that the length of each of the clearways would be 25 yards (23 metres).
A Member asked about the term-time TRO on Sydney Avenue. The Chairman understood the law had changed and it was not possible to have term-time only parking restrictions. The Swale District Manager confirmed that Sydney Avenue had not recently been considered by officers.
A Ward Member understood that both Sydney Avenue and Adelaide Drive were being considered at the meeting. He gave an overview of the issues of children getting to Westlands School now that there was no longer the facility for a pick-up/drop-off area for buses at the school. The Ward Member spoke about the lack of consultation with Swale Borough Council (SBC), and inadequate consultation with residents, on the bus stop clearway markings. He considered the length of the clearways would effect some residents’ access to their driveways. Buses were arriving too early at the bus stops, and were running their engines whilst stationary. The Ward Member was disappointed that there was no scheme in place for Sydney Avenue. He referred to the TRO made in relation to Sydney Avenue in December 2018 for term-time only, and he raised concern that term-time only was now not possible to do, and residents had felt let down. The Ward Member said that residents needed to be communicated with directly.
Councillor Roger Truelove proposed that the clearways not be agreed and that consultation be carried out with residents of Adelaide Drive and Sydney Avenue, and communication be had with residents of Sydney Avenue to let them know about term-time only restrictions, and then to report back to the JTB.
Members raised the following points:
· The TRO at Sydney Avenue had been completed prior to buses not being at the school for pick-up/drop-off;
· there were pedestrian safety issues for the school children;
· was a TRO in Sydney Avenue still required as the buses did not need to go along this road;
· residents should be consulted upon and notified about the bus clearways;
· did the clearways need to be so long?
· clearways opposite each other was not a good idea, could not agree Figure 1, this was not what was agreed on-site; and
· buses were arriving too early at the clearways which caused access problems to residents’ driveways.
Kent County Councillor John Wright proposed that residents be properly consulted on the bus clearways and they be reduced in size and not be located opposite each other, and residents be re-consulted on the TRO in Sydney Avenue as the buses were no longer using that road. These views were supported by the Ward Member.
The Ward Member explained that the TRO in Sydney Avenue was because parents parked there. The proposer said that parking needed to be avoided at the junction of Sydney Avenue and Cryalls Lane, but the rest of Sydney Avenue did not need double yellow lines.
Members made further comments which included:
· Originally we were advised on works three weeks in advance, there was no consultation;
· the biggest problem was between 8am to 4pm when residents could not park in the clearways which was disruptive;
· the clearways were too long and blocked many houses;
· it was not the law that changed, but public guidance which stated that term-time only regulations should not, rather than could not be stipulated;
· school pick-up and drop-off would be better along the A2;
· safety issues with buses going along Adelaide Drive;
· consultation was needed;
· idling engines was an issue, no idling zones were needed to reduce pollution;
· the long clearways would encourage buses to stay too long, and multiple buses to be there;
· the clearways in Figure 1 needed to be staggered more;
· could not have buses stopping on the A2 as this would cause gridlock and air quality issues;
· idling needed to be investigated; and
· the TRO on Sydney Avenue only needed to cover the corner of Adelaide Drive and box section with Cryalls Lane.
Councillor Roger Truelove proposed that the bus clearways not be agreed, that there be a full consultation with residents of Adelaide Drive and Sydney Avenue on the buses and the yellow lines, and idling, with guidelines and legal advice on term-time restrictions, with a report back to the JTB. This was seconded by Kent County Councillor Bowles.
Councillor Mike Baldock advised that talks were already ongoing on idling issues.
(1) That the report be noted.
(2) That the bus clearways not be agreed, that there be a full consultation with residents of Adelaide Drive and Sydney Avenue on the buses and the yellow lines, and idling, with guidelines and legal advice on term-time restrictions, with a report back to the JTB.
- JTB Report Westalnds School Bus Arrangements, item 444. PDF 101 KB
- Appendix A Westlands school bus, item 444. PDF 153 KB
- Appendix B Westlands school bus, item 444. PDF 61 KB