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Forest Hill Ward Meeting - 30th April

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Joined 22-06-2006
Posted on Monday, 16 April, 2007 - 11:22 pm:   

Residents of Forest Hill Ward are cordially invited to the second Forest Hill Ward Meeting hosted by the ward councillors on Monday 30th April 2007, at 7.30pm, Christian Fellowship Centre on Honor Oak Road.

The Meeting is part of a regular series open meetings hosted by the ward councillors where issues of interest to local residents can be discussed.

At this meeting, we will be joined members of the Safer Neighbourhoods Team to discuss crime, personal safety and neighbourhood watch schemes, but any issue can be brought up for discussion and we will try and help where we can.

If you'll be unable to attend the meeting, but would like to make a contribution on these or other issues, please feel free to email me at, remembering to include your postcode.

We look forward to seeing you there.
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Saturday, 21 April, 2007 - 09:34 am:   

I would like to go but have other committments on Mondays, however I would like to raise again the subject of area based traffic calming and solutions to the rat running problem. I did ask that this be raised at the previous ward meeting but don't believe this was discussed? I haven't seen any minutes so can;t be sure.

Cllr Peake has written to confirm that 20mph zones are being considered but I have heard nothing further and he has not replied to my further correspondence.

It would be good , Alex, if minutes of the last meeting were posted here. Continuity of discussion is useful in motivation people to participate in further discussion.

Whilst writing, would you please advise on whether the Forest Hill Steering Group is now defunct as nothing seems to have been happened on this for almost two years?

Joined 12-12-2006
Posted on Saturday, 21 April, 2007 - 06:18 pm:   

This is the issue I asked to be raised:

The out of sequence pedestrian crossing outside Forest Hill Station.

The sequencing is weird/wrong and it is counter-intuitive crossing here. There must be a near miss everyday.

Isolating people in the middle of the road for extended periods naturally encourages pedestrians
to take their chances and try to predict when the London Rd lights have turned red and beat the cars revving up from Dartmouth Rd.

This is is the busiest pedestrian crossing in the area so it needs to be made safer - a simple sensible resequencing of the lights would be a good start.
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Sunday, 22 April, 2007 - 08:19 am:   

Perryman makes a really good point here. This crossing does not encourage safe pedestrian behaviour and is even more tricky given that many vehicles, at least those coming down London Road, do not stop on red. As a driver also, this is hell corner as people just seem to run across the road when they feel like it.
Joined 12-11-2006
Posted on Tuesday, 24 April, 2007 - 01:11 pm:   

absolutely crazy crossing, I have nearly been hit by a car driving past the station (he had a green light to go straight or turn right) and doing a u-turn to shoot past the launderette - while I had a green man to cross the road and was in the middle of it!
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Wednesday, 25 April, 2007 - 07:26 am:   

Pat, this happened to me and a few others a few weeks ago- seems to be regular occurence if not the same incident- it was really scary as the car nearly ploughed into a woman with a pushchair. The FHS have been making moves to do something about this but it does need raising with local councillors.

On another note, I was walking down Perry Vale on Sunday and near the Dacres Rd junction a car came round the bend very fast and almost lost control. There was a family ahead of us who screamed as they felt the car was about to plough into them. When I lived in Vale Lodge ( just on the corner) there were several incidents where cars taking this corner too fast crashed into and demolished our garden wall. Also some have overturned and landed in the front garden- which is why no one at VL ever used that front garden or let their kids play there. Seemingly despite an abundance of traffic calming measures in the locality the main problem is still not resolved. I do still think there is something wrong with the camber of that part of the road. We raised this with ROSPA and the Council some time ago after road deaths at that point but nothing came of this. There is no point spending money on measures if they are simply not doing the job. We therefore need an effective evaluation of all calming measures to see if they are working, otherwise its all a waste of time.
Joined 12-11-2006
Posted on Wednesday, 25 April, 2007 - 12:17 pm:   

scary stuff, it was a separate incident I think as I was the only person crossing at the time - just my own life on the line!
Joined 12-12-2006
Posted on Thursday, 26 April, 2007 - 01:33 am:   

This point along Perry Vale (101) is historically a very interesting corner as Steve Grindlay explained to me on the Sydenham Town site.
Perry Vale/Slough coming west met the common here in a wide junction. You can still make the shape out, if you include the band of trees, (but this may be a coincidence).

~200yrs ago during enclosure, the "road planners" chose an existing common path/track bending to the right as the continuation of Perry Vale rather than extending a new straighter road. So it's their fault!

Anyway, I'd put a mini round-about there. The one further up at the Mayow Rd junction has reduced the speed of the cars, and is safer now IMO.

As for the crossing at the station, why do we have to wait for a fatality before they react?
Joined 22-06-2006
Posted on Saturday, 28 April, 2007 - 08:42 am:   

Many thanks for everyone's comments - I'll do what I can to include them in the discussions on Monday evening. If you have any further points, please do email me.

Roz - just to reassure you that road safety and traffic calming were discussed at the last Ward Meeting.

These events are informal and open meetings for debate and discussion by local residents and there are no minutes as such, but we would be happy to circulate by email an account of what happened.

If anyone from the ward would be interested in receiving such material, and other information of interest to local residents, then do please email me with your postcode to
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Monday, 30 April, 2007 - 03:00 pm:   

Thanks, Alex. It would be good to see a record of the last meeting as its not clear what points were raised and actioned, and by whom. I will email you my details however it would also be good to have record put on this website.

Joined 12-12-2006
Posted on Monday, 21 May, 2007 - 01:53 pm:   


Were there any minutes produced?
Joined 22-06-2006
Posted on Wednesday, 23 May, 2007 - 07:52 am:   

I have drafted a summary, which is too long for posting here, so I'm currently trying to trim it down and will post it in the next couple of days.
Joined 22-06-2006
Posted on Friday, 25 May, 2007 - 03:20 pm:   

Forest Hill ward town meeting summary

The Forest Hill ward town meeting took place on Monday 30th April 2007 at the Christian Fellowship Centre on Honor Oak Road. The larger part of the evening centred on community safety and crime reduction.

PC Andy Renno from Forest Hill’s Safer Neighbourhoods Team outlined their work on Neighbourhood Watch schemes. The SNT are keen to get them running locally as they are a useful source of intelligence, reduce the fear of crime and can also reduce home and contents insurance! The local SNT are committed to making NW schemes work in Forest Hill and are keen to hear from people who would be interested in starting one: call the SNT on 020 8721 2723 if you are interested.

Dave Cass outlined the work of Lewisham’s Community Safety Team, which covers anti-social behaviour, drugs strategy, youth offending and managing the reparation / restorative justice scheme in the borough. Dave noted that crime in the borough had generally fallen in the past year, though robberies and muggings were up with young people in particular as victims and perpetrators.

The CST work with young people to change their behaviour and, where appropriate, ASBOs, Dispersal Orders and other tools were used. The key to successfully dealing with crime, however, was effective partnership working between the Council, Police and the community.

The meeting moved on to discuss other issues of interest in the ward

* Pedestrian crossing opposite WH Smiths

The was general agreement in the meeting that pedestrians get a raw deal when attempting to cross the South Circular from WH Smiths across to near the laundrette. Of particular concern was the visibility of pedestrians to traffic coming down London Road, and the timing of the ‘green man’.

* Localities Fund

It was agreed that the consultation on the 2006/7 Localities Fund would ideally had been more extensive. Nevertheless, there had been a leaflet drop asking for suggestions and a public meeting where suggestions were solicited and discussed, and the councillors had worked hard to bring in matching monies to make the £10k Localities Fund money go as far as possible.

* Traffic calming

Various questions about the road safety schemes were raised.

Road humps were used extensively because they were cheap and allowed 20mphs zones to be established (under TfL guidelines). The police regularly ticket drivers who go down Manor Mount the wrong way (though the meeting felt that this didn’t happen enough).

Rat-running down Ewelme and Benson Roads and the timing of traffic lights at the junction of Honor Oak Road and London Road were discussed. It was suggested that the problem lay in drivers trying to by-pass congestion on the South Circular, and that the counter intuitive solution might be to add further delay for the traffic joining the South Circular at Devonshire Road.

Traffic speeding down Kirkdale was also brought up and everyone agreed that some form of traffic calming near the junction with Thorpewood Avenue would be ideal.

* Town Centre

A discussion about the general state of the town centre included points about the street signs, street furniture and bins, greenery and planting beds. These are a complicated series of related issues, and the councillors reported that they had been taking up a lot of these points with the Town Centre teams and the Regeneration Department, and would soon be meeting with Southern and the Horniman as well.

* Post Office

It was noted that Royal Mail intended to move the Post Office into WH Smiths. After a brief discussion, the meeting agreed that this was unlikely to be desirable, but that the councillors would seek more information before taking further action.

The meeting closed at around 9.30pm, with the next meeting scheduled for early September.
Joined 17-03-2005
Posted on Friday, 25 May, 2007 - 07:01 pm:   

Thanks, Alex. Glad the pedestrian crossing opposite Smiths was brought up as this is surely a death trap due to traffic not stopping when the lights are red and the green man is visible. There was some recent tv coverage of the tragic incident in Westminster when a woman stumbled at a crossing and was fatally injured. The upshot was that to cross that particular road safely required 12 seconds however the lights only allowed for 6 seconds. It would be good to have the FH crossing investigated in the same way before something similar occurs.

Being a motorist also, pedestrians do not help themselves by suddenly launching themselves into the road from all directions at this crossing therefore pedestrian behaviour also needs to be taken into account.

Sounds like a good meeting, and look forward to the one in September.
Joined 12-12-2006
Posted on Saturday, 26 May, 2007 - 12:56 am:   

thanks Alex. Much appreciated.

Roz re: pedestrian crossing opposite Smiths

"traffic not stopping when the lights are red"
The filter light is the problem here - there is no 'red light' for those turning left.
Some drivers assume the filter light bulb is broken, and proceed regardless.
Also the drivers get no amber signal either so many do not notice the green arrow.

Very very poor design.

"pedestrians do not help themselves by suddenly launching themselves.."
Again very very poor design. This is a major busy pedestrian crossing to and from the train station, and people should take priority here.
There should be a street wide pelican crossing that fires promptly at the next sensible change in the main lights. You do not want people stuck in the middle of a complex junction. This is not safe. Why is this difficult to understand for our street planners?

But worse, as stated countless times, the lights have been very badly synchronised for a few years now, and pedestrians are kept marooned on the reservation for an extraordinary long time, so inviting them to 'launch' themselves at any gaps in the traffic.

Alex, since there was agreement at the meeting, can we assume that you will take this forward and keep us informed of your progress? Preferably before someone is killed!

Many thanks
Joined 30-03-2005
Posted on Sunday, 27 May, 2007 - 03:20 pm:   


I think pedestrian behaviour could be improved if motorists (and other road users) actually obeyed the traffic signals and rules. There is little point waiting for the green man if the traffic does not stop when the green man is showing. I have found this happen at many light controlled crossings in the borough. I have even seen a morcyclist do a u-urn round this junction!
If pedestrians can only cross when traffic is not coming they tend to watch the traffic and cross when they think they can cross.

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