Venue: Council Chamber, Town Hall, Katharine Street, Croydon CR0 1NX. View directions
Contact: Thomas Downs
02087266000 x86166 Email: Thomas.Downs@croydon.gov.uk
To invite all attendees to introduce themselves.
The Chair welcomed participants to the meeting and those present introduced themselves.
Disclosures of interests
In accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct and the statutory provisions of the Localism Act, Members and co-opted Members of the Council are reminded that it is a requirement to register disclosable pecuniary interests (DPIs) and gifts and hospitality to the value of which exceeds £50 or multiple gifts and/or instances of hospitality with a cumulative value of £50 or more when received from a single donor within a rolling twelve month period. In addition, Members and co-opted Members are reminded that unless their disclosable pecuniary interest is registered on the register of interests or is the subject of a pending notification to the Monitoring Officer, they are required to disclose those disclosable pecuniary interests at the meeting. This should be done by completing the Disclosure of Interest form and handing it to the Democratic Services representative at the start of the meeting. The Chair will then invite Members to make their disclosure orally at the commencement of Agenda item 3. Completed disclosure forms will be provided to the Monitoring Officer for inclusion on the Register of Members’ Interests.
There were none.
To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 18 June 2019 as an accurate record.
The minutes of the previous meeting held on 18 June 2019 were agreed as an accurate record.
Ø Current works in progress (Including A232 Addiscombe Road) – Michelle Wildish (TfL) & Mark Davis (London Trams)
Ø Phipps Bridge London Trams derailment (appeal for information) – Michelle Wildish (TfL) & Mark Davis (London Trams)
a) Current works in progress
The London Trams representative updated the Panel on the major renewal work that was in progress between 23 August 2019 and 2 September 2019. This affected 2/3 of the London Trams network including Chepstow Road and its significance was marked as the largest project to date of planned maintenance and upgrading works in Croydon. Delivery had been delayed resulting in the works being extended for a week beyond the planned date. This was due to the need for emergency utility works caused by gas and water leaks in the area which were discovered in the week leading up to the work. Residents and stakeholders were kept informed during the process and were provided with regular live updates.
In response to the Chair asking to what extent of the work was a part of the planned maintenance programme and whether it was necessary to be completed within that time period, the London Trams representative stated that the Chepstow Road and the bridge work had been planned and because the surrounding junctions were closed that it made sense to schedule additional work to avoid other future closures.
b) Phipps Bridge London Trams derailment
The London Trams representative appealed to the Panel for further information to support the formal investigation taking place. The incident occurred at approximately 3.50pm on 29 August, the affected tram boarded approximately 100 passengers and there were no persons injured. During the tram recovery response, London Trams and emergency services staff were attacked via stone throwing by unknown residents and the British Transport Police were leading an investigation to find the persecutors. No links had yet been found despite holding footage and receiving enquiries, however London Trams had written to members and colleague operators in Merton for support. There was a £10,000 reward offered to a person that provided information that enabled the identification of the offender that would lead to prosecution. Consequentially from the incident, London Trams were examining fencing improvement solutions which were inherently challenging due to the nature of the system.
The Chair thanked the London Trams representative for the update and stated that the Panel supported the apprehension of the offender and that they would raise the appeal internally. The Chair agreed that many areas were at risk of such intrusion and that fencing solutions would prove difficult.
In response to the East Surrey Transport Committee representative suggesting that installing permanent CCTV akin to the TfL red routes which provided high coverage should be considered, the London Trams representative said that they were exploring surveillance and fencing options. The Police have said that there was currently not sufficient CCTV coverage for the targeted area, however they could see that the persecutors were not hiding next to the track in this incident.
In response to the Chair asking for an update on the matter in a future meeting, the London Trams representative agreed and stated that they would update the Panel if anything were to surface in the interim. A risk ... view the full minutes text for item 4.
Ø Bus services in the Town Centre – Michelle Wildish (TfL)
Ø Liveable Neighbourhood Bid(Buses to serve Old Town) – Ian Plowright & Michelle Wildish (TfL)
Ø Advance notice of timetable changes (Notice of recent diversion of Route 50 was poor, and left passengers confused & short notice of bus timetable changes in Norbury) – Michelle Wildish (TfL)
Ø Norwood Junction – Issues boarding buses at close of school times, with secondary and primary schools causing overcrowding (South Norwood Clock Tower Bus Stops, Grovener Road 130 & 160 Bus Stop, Portland Road Northbound Bus Stop) - Michelle Wildish (TfL)
Ø Route 130 (Need for an additional stop on Portland Road to service Norwood Junction Station & diversion to serve Kestrel Way stops) – Michelle Wildish (TfL)
Ø Update on 404 and 434 Buses – Michelle Wildish (TfL)
a) Bus services in the Town Centre
The TfL Croydon Town bus changes presentation could be found attached to the minutes.
The TfL representative introduced the presentation which outlined the central Croydon bus changes from 2 November 2019. The changes followed public consultation from November 2018 to January 2019 and the results were published in July 2019. TfL was committed to working with the council to keep the bus network under review and adapt to growth. The aim of the changes was to allow for a simpler and more efficient bus network by ensuring that resources were invested in locations of the highest user demand. Customer information on the changes were provided in leaflets, as bus stop notices, in web page updates, from travel ambassadors in the town centre and from public drop in sessions which were scheduled at the end of October and in the first week of implementation at the central library.
The East Surrey Transport Committee representative stated that the current plans were a significant improvement to the original suggestions, however small adjustments would improve the plans. The 405 and the 412 route change to curtail at Katherine Street were poor arrangements because this forced passengers to walk approximately 150m between connections. Providers should have listened to passenger suggestions to extend the service to Park Street and to provide double decker buses during peak demand. The 264 bus was the main route to the Tooting St Georges Hospital which now curtailed in West Croydon instead of Croydon Library, this would result in only one bus that connected to this service and all passengers taking this route would be affected.
The TfL representative stated that routes 405 and 412 would now only operate to Katherine Street although they would continue to operate seven buses per hour on Pampisford Road using routes 405 and 455. Passengers from Redhill still had the opportunity to change for West Croydon using the route 60 or 166 in Coulsdon. In relation to route 264, it was understood that many passengers would need to make a second change to reach the hospital however the route would be under review.
In response to the Chair asking what the planned timescale of the review would be in relation to the changes that may be necessary, the TfL representative stated that review would be continuous and the number of passengers waiting at stops would be monitored, however judging those patterns would commence over several weeks.
Councillor Hoar indicated that the changes seemed to deter residents from using bus services even though Croydon was one of the few boroughs where bus use had increased. Many of the provision changes seemed to require extensive bus timetable knowledge from users and some services would see such a reduced frequency that passengers would be completely discouraged, which could lead to services being totally withdrawn. For more vulnerable users the changes could mean that they could potentially be forced to stand after their first or second change in their journey. Plans ... view the full minutes text for item 5.
Ø Siemens GoVia Thameslink trains unexpected reactions to electrical disturbances– Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
Ø Update on Passenger Benefit Fund – Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
Ø Rebuilding Gatwick Airport Station – Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
Ø December 2019 Timetable Proposals – Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
Ø Replacement of Sanderstead Railway Bridge – Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
Ø Selhurst Station Lift Work (disruption from closing rear entrance during works on match days) – Yvonne Leslie (GTR)
a) Siemens Govia Thameslink trains unexpected reactions to electrical disturbances
The Govia Thameslink Railway (GTR) representative informed the Panel on the details of how the national power outage affected services across the country including; Kings Cross, Siemans, Network Rail and GTR. After the outage only half of the effected trains could be re-booted which left the remaining trains requiring repair from technicians. Beyond the entire incident there was an initial report published by National Grid on the OFGEM website and a wider investigation and review was to follow.
In response to the Chair asking the operator whether their service was prepared for an event of this nature and secondly whether there were any passengers that were held stuck on the train carriages and had tried to evacuate themselves, the GTR representative stated that the operators had evacuation and communication procedures in place for these scenarios and that they were not aware of any passengers performing evacuations independent to the formal process.
b) Update on Passenger Benefit Fund
The GTR representative stated that there had been 3-4 user engagement sessions to collate ideas on how to spend the £25 million fund. The online survey closed at the end of August and the feedback was currently being analysed to balance factors of popularity, affordability and feasibility alongside talks with DfT on how to take the project forward. Once proposals were drafted they would be fed back into the engagement process. Improvements being explored included cycle hire and smart card extensions.
In response to the Chair asking what the fund could mean for Croydon in particular and which stations would see the benefit, the GTR representative said that most stations, including GTR stations, would be allocated funding as part of the special industry compensation scheme.
The East Surrey Transport Committee representative welcomed the plans and stated there would be many wider benefits felt by the community as part of station improvements which would result in increased public transport usage and environmental gain.
c) Rebuilding Gatwick Airport Station
The GTR representative explained to the Panel that to respond to the current and increasing passenger volume there was a £150 million investment to expand the Gatwick Airport Station with planned work due to commence within the next two years. There were ongoing discussions with Network Rail and the proposed timetable was under review and further updates would be communicated to the next Panel.
d) December 2019 Timetable Proposals
The GTR representative told the Panel that the December 2019 timetable proposals were not substantial and would not affect Croydon; the main lines to be affected were between London and Peterborough.
The East Surrey Transport Committee representative said that there would only be two fewer trains per hour to Gatwick therefore little affect to local train services.
e) Replacement of Sanderstead Railway Bridge
The East Surrey Transport Committee representative enquired how long the Sanderstead Railway would need to be shut in future works to the bridge whilst the compound was being constructed. In past waves of ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
Any other business
To consider any other business at the Chair’s discretion.
a) West Croydon Station redevelopment
The Chair told the Panel that the West Croydon Station redevelopment, which had as part of the West Croydon Masterplan, and queried what was the current progress.
The Head of Transport representative replied that the council was leading on the project development in partnership with National Rail and TfL and currently the first stage of financial and technical feasibility was being analysed. The next design phase and future track configuration was waiting on the assessment from National Rail which would become clear in the new few weeks.
In response to the Chair stating that previous accessibility discussions had agreed routes through the National Rail carpark and that TfL would help the Council to erect signage and asking whether there was any further discussion, The Head of Transport said they had been in discussions with TfL and that they were still awaiting signs outside the station and an officer had now been identified in the Traffic Management team who was able to organise the signs.
The Chair stated that an update on discussions should be brought to the next meeting and that the signs should be erected within the interim.
b) Thornton Heath Bus Garage
The Chair updated the Panel on the history of issues created by the bus garage for local residents which included the Garage being situated in the middle of a residential area and that the air quality needed to be controlled. The journey to solve these problems would be enabled by continued conversations with TfL.
A resident stated that since the last meeting it had taken two months to investigate and they needed a resolution because the disruption had occurred for approximately three years. The two major issues with the garage was that buses were left parked on the surrounding roads which caused congestion and the loud bus operator shift transfers.
The TfL representative replied saying that were finding a mutually convenient meeting date and that a resolution was desired by all parties involved.
c) Vision Zero - West Croydon Station
The Chair stated that council and TfL would investigate the need to introduce signage on transport routes for St Michaels Square and they believed there was a strong bus route business case.
Items for next meeting
To suggest items to be discussed at the next meeting of the panel.
The Chair invited the Panel to submit any items they wanted to be discussed at the next meeting on 11 February 2020 and that the deadline for submission would be mid-January with a specific date to follow.
Dates of future meetings
· 11 February 2020
· 11 February 2020
· 16 June 2020