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Town centre FURY

PUBLISHED: 12:27 30 July 2009 | UPDATED: 17:00 25 August 2010

RESIDENTS are furious proposed changes to their town centre stem from consultation results from over two years ago, writes Marina Soteriou

RESIDENTS are furious proposed changes to their town centre stem from consultation results from over two years ago, writes Marina Soteriou.

Bexley councillors are in the midst of agreeing new changes to roads and bus stops near Sidcup train station but have only consulted a 'limited number' of people about the detailed plans, according to residents.

Changes include replacing the bus stop outside Tesco's in Station Road with short-stay parking bays, building a new bus stop with a loading bay between Hatherley Crescent and Alma Road and the introduction of a pedestrian phase at the cross junction near the train station.

Transport councillor Peter Craske told the Times these proposals stem from the original public meetings in December 2006 where more than 400 residents turned up.

But pensioner Peter Scopes, 80, of Stanhope Road, Sidcup said in 2006 people were more concerned about the plans to change traffic flow around Morrisons and the High Street, which have now been implemented.

Mr Scopes said: "My main objection is that nobody that I have spoken to has seen the consultation document.

"It has not been a fair process. Two years ago most people consulted were concerned about Morrisons and the High Street. This bit of the plan was not considered at all.

"The bus stop outside Tesco's shouldn't be moved as it means that a person using a bus has to cross Hatherley Crescent. It is further away from the station which is not convenient for the disabled or the elderly."

Rita Grootendorst from Sidcup said: "The council has not carried out the constitutional requirement to consult and the entire process ought to be halted until full and fair public consultation has been carried out. Much of the proposed details are inappropriate for pedestrians, commuters, bus travellers to and from Sidcup main railway station, not forgetting health and safety, needless disruption to residents and travellers as well as obstructions to freight and emergency vehicles on the main thoroughfare to Bromley and the hospital."

Mr Craske said: "We said we would improve traffic flow and now we are doing it at this end of Sidcup too. We are going to deliver on our promise.

"I personally read all of the 1,000 suggestions that were sent in, in 2006 and I will do the same with these proposals. I will reflect on all those comments and take a decision. There is room for flexibility because the changes will not take place until the end of next summer."

The plans were due to be available online at www.bexley.gov.uk.

marina.soteriou@archant.co.uk

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