Friday, 28 March 2014

Bishop Centre development, Taplow

Friday 28th March Transport for Buckinghamshire is hosting a meeting to brief the press on the details of the development of the Bishop Centre retail park, Taplow. Date: Tuesday 1 April 2014 Time and location: 10:00 a.m. Bowmer and Kirkland site office Bishop Centre Hitcham Road Taplow SL6 0NY This will be an opportunity to hear from the main contractor Bowmer and Kirkland, as well as from Buckinghamshire County Council, on the details of the development, and for media questions to be answered. Subject to numbers, it may be possible to view the site. Please email Graham Smith to confirm attendance –

Thursday, 27 March 2014

New signs to slow village traffic

Wednesday 26th March Drivers are being encouraged to drive more slowly in north Buckinghamshire, with the arrival of 14 new speed signs. The Moveable Vehicle Activated Signs (MVAS), funded mostly by the County Council’s Local Area Forums, with help from parish councils, will be moved around 40 locations across the Buckingham, Winslow and district and Haddenham and Long Crendon areas. Concerns about speeding through towns and villages is a consistent priority which residents and parish councils raise through their local area forums. Research has shown that these signs can help reduce speed by between 4mph to 7mph. They are transportable, powered by battery, and so easily transferable. County Councillor Warren Whyte, Chairman of the Buckingham LAF, said: 'Time and time again residents vent their concern for drivers speeding through quiet villages and towns. It's hoped that with the purchase of the MVAS, drivers will be deterred from driving too fast and lower speed to safe limits. These are not designed to ‘catch’ people, but to offer reminders on speed. This project is a great example of local volunteers being supported by the County Council to address local issues.’

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Notification of bridge works

Wednesday 26th March Strengthening Willowbank No.2 Bridge, Willow Avenue, Willowbank, Denham The planned works, due to take place earlier this year, were not carried out due to high water level and very rapid flow. After working alongside residents for monitoring the water level, the work has been rescheduled for Monday 31st March, lasting 10 to 12 weeks. The work will take place as follows: The existing outer edge metal beam will be removed and replaced, together with a new reinforced concrete slab, to strengthen and widen the structure. This will improve the existing road narrowing between the bridge papapet wall and buildings. In order to keep the road open, it will be reduced to single file traffic for the duration of the works. Longer waiting times are also anticipated during delivery of machinery and materials. Traffic will be managed using a 'give and take' system to provide a single alternate flow. If this is found to be unsuitable, traffic signals will be used instead. The works also involve some utilities diversions and some of the operations are expected to be carried out overnight. Pedestrian movements will be maintained during this period via the existing footbridge. Every effort will be made to carry out the works with minimum disturbance, and Transport for Buckinghamshire apologises for any inconvenience caused during this time. Any queries should be directed to TfB's contact centre - 0845 230 2882.

Tuesday, 25 March 2014

TfB launch new pothole blog

A new weblog launched by Transport for Buckinghamshire (TfB) features latest information about pothole and surfacing work - Updated every Friday afternoon, the blog details the number of potholes repaired every week, how many crews have been out, where larger scale works took place, and plans for the forthcoming week. Janet Blake, Buckinghamshire County Council Cabinet Member for Planning and Transport, said: 'This blog is a real eye opener to the number of potholes our guys fix every week. It’s enlightening to see the extent of work that’s carried out; I recommend having a look so you know what’s happening in the areas you travel.' If you see a pothole, Tell TfB!

Extra £2.5 million to help repair roads

Buckinghamshire will receive £2.5 million from the Department for Transport's (DfT) £140 million road repair fund. This follows a bid by Buckinghamshire County Council in response to the DfT's announcement on March 9 making the money available to highway authorities to help repair damage to roads caused by the recent storms and flooding. The County Council's bid highlighted areas for repair following the recent severe weather. Details of the locations will be published on the council's website. Details of the bidding process for a further £200 million funding, announced in the Budget last week, to help repair road surfaces that have deteriorated, will be announced by the DfT in the next few weeks. Janet Blake, Cabinet Member for Planning and Transport, said: 'We always welcome extra government money to help us meet our residents' top priorities - in this case repairing our roads after the severe weather. Every little bit helps.'

Monday, 24 March 2014

Buckinghamshire flood recovery update 2

Groundwater levels to stay high Even though the water levels in rivers have now dropped, the extraordinary amount of rainfall in recent months means that groundwater levels are very high, and in some areas this is continuing to cause flooding. Even without further significant rain, groundwater levels are likely to stay very high for some months, and problems may persist over this period. Bear this in mind before disposing of sandbags. For latest updates on groundwater levels, please see here. Health risks Although any harmful bugs in floodwater become very diluted and usually present a low risk, flood water can become contaminated with sewage or animal waste, so should always be treated as a health risk. Children should not be allowed to play around flood water. If you have been in contact with flood water make sure you take hygiene precautions including washing hands, and removing footwear before going indoors. Frequently asked questions on flooding and health are answered here. Click here for the previous County Council flood recovery update for information on maintaining mental wellbeing. Animals Remember that animals too can become ill through contact with contaminated water, so avoid walking dogs in flooded areas. Further information for the public and for farmers is available here. Campaign for clear ditches A new campaign called 'Working Together to Ditch the Problem' is being led by Bucks County Council cabinet member Janet Blake to encourage landowners to keep ditches and drainage on their land clear in order to reduce the risk of flooding. The campaign is being supported by the National Farmers Union and many parish councils. Financial support If you, your business, or your voluntary organisation have suffered damage due to the recent floods, you may be able to claim financial relief from your district council. The following district councils have information pages on financial relief: Aylesbury Vale DC Wycombe DC Click here for flood recovery advice from the Citizens' Advice Bureau. Specific local advice and support are also available from High Wycombe & District CAB. Click here for business recovery information from Buckinghamshire Business First.

Funding means training for 4,500 young cyclists

Four and a half thousand Buckinghamshire children will be able to get safety training on their bikes with the coming year's Bikeability scheme. This is almost twice as many children as received cycle safety training under the scheme last year. It's thanks for a £180,000 grant from the Department for Transport to Buckinghamshire County Council. Any school or youth group in Buckinghamshire can apply to the County Council for Bikeability funding, which then pays for local professional instructors to train children in school years five to nine. On-the-road training is in small groups, and includes experience dealing with traffic on short journeys, such as cycling to school, being clear with hand signals, turning at junctions, and identifying and dealing with hazards. Janet Blake, Cabinet Member for Planning and Transport said: 'It's really important to give our young people the skills and confidence to ride safely on today's roads - and to make it fun!' In the past year more than 130 schools and groups have run Bikeability sessions, said co-ordinator Georgina Longley, who will be promoting the scheme during the coming weeks. Schools and groups can apply for funding to the County Council at