TMSTH Area Forum Meeting - 29th March 2023

Item 1: Introductions

Item 2: Marc Griffin, Programme Manager BCP Council, talks about the Transforming Travel Programme

Item 3: Further updates, including reading of accounts, local councillors’ news and response to public questions

Click on the A icon to view a PDF of the agenda.

TMSTH Area Forum meeting March 29th 2023


  • Ray O'Luby (Chair)
  • Conor O'Luby (Secretary)
  • Jean Kirk (Treasurer)
  • Cllr Kieron Wilson
  • Cllr Lisa Northover
  • Cllr Derek Borthwick

Councillors’ pre-election statements

Councillors were given the chance to briefly say what they would like to achieve if re-elected in the upcoming BCP elections. Due to my having to help deal with technical problems relating to the Transforming Travel Programme presentation I wasn’t able to take down all the details. I asked councillors to provide me with some details after the meeting, and have so far received the following:

Cllr Derek Borthwick:

  • BCP showed a seventy million turnover
  • With the manpower short all over at BCP, contractors were finding it difficult
  • We need to build a reliable labour force, to complete building schedules on time
  • Buses were the responsibility for the bus company
  • If elected, I would strive to help keep the air show, the customer contact centre, continue perennial flower planting

Local issues discussion

Cllrs Borthwick, Northover and Wilson talk on the state of the mill. As it remains in private hands, little can be done to improve its situation.

Brin (Bradpole Rd Postmaster): Why can’t the council do something about empty properties?

Cllr Borthwick – we don’t have the skills to do the properties up. We’re here for local issues, I can’t talk about national issues.

Brin - I’m talking about empty shops

Ian – about empty shops, after 3 months they do have to pay rates. But there’s little the council can do about getting landlords to rent them

Member of the public – inappropriate planting of trees and they are overgrown, several houses get no sunlight. Wordsworth Avenue. The roots are coming through the pavements.

Cllr Borthwick – I’ll see what I can do. I’ll find out who owns them.

Cllr Borthwick - Hicks farm is stopped at the moment. Nothing to add about it.

There are loads of potholes in Townsend. We don’t have the money to deal with them all.

Ray - it’s the pressure of traffic

Cllr Borthwick – they have marked out the larger ones

Also the lamp posts are terrible. I’ve got no hope with them

Cllr Northover – there’s been a problem getting replacement bulbs

Cllr Wilson – happy to raise about the lamp posts

Alan – aggressive begging at Castlepoint. He’s had an injunction there, but now he’s knocking on doors in Bradpole Road. Late last night he came knocking.

Cllr Wilson – good that you raised it, the police are aware.

Cllr Northover – I had a similar situation I was able to take a photo. Don’t put yourself in danger

Brin – the police are not responding to calls about anti-social behaviour

Cllr Borthwick – they don’t have the money

Ray - there is a new PCSO who seems quite dedicated, not able to come tonight obviously. He did come to the 3Ts (Townsend Together Team)

Wendy – how much are the councillors fighting for funding for the Forum?

Cllr Borthwick - It’s your responsibility to find funding from now on, the cabinet doesn’t see Forums as a priority

Wendy – what are we paying for? The forum was not set up to be self-funding, the council has a responsibility to the public in terms of consultation

Conor – I think the Council needs to understand that they are not doing us a favour in providing some funding for Forums; we are doing them a favour. We give them a chance to meet with the public and to fulfil their duty to consult with local residents.

Cllr Borthwick – I’ve tried to convince them

Cllr Wilson – Forums are a vital part of our local democracy, I ‘fear’ these dates on the calendar, because people can question me, scrutinise councillors’ work.

We had a meeting (Brin, Alan etc) about how we might fundraise for future meetings.

Ray – we appreciate councillors’ efforts.

The Transforming Travel Programme

Marc Griffin and Claire Clark of BCP Council talk on the Transforming Travel Programme, helping to provide alternatives to the car.

Please look at slide show for full talk details:

Transforming Travel TCF SED Region Presentation TMSTH Area Forum 29th March 2023 - PDF

Transforming Travel Stakeholders Newsletter December 2022 - PDF

Central government has ringfenced an amount of money for alternative travel options. Trying to improve safety, linking businesses and jobs. ‘Levelling up’.

Climate emergency (net zero, carbon capture). COP events. Our actions will affect our children, grandchildren. STEM skills shortage in construction industry, this programme will help.

There is a shortage of housing, we need to provide appropriate travel options not increase congestion, air pollution. How do we get people onto their bikes? Behavioural change.


Investment from third parties. Demise of Yellow Buses; but there has been an uplift in local buses i.e. More Buses. Beryl Bikes.

Provide evidence that cycling, walking improves health. We have links to Public Health England.

There are a number of routes (6) where we are investing money to improve alternative modes of transport.

Bus priority signals are useful additions.

Trip end facilities – businesses and schools providing facilities for those arriving by cycling, walking after

Whitelegg Way – has attracted a lot of comment, some criticism, some positive. Up-tick in cycling.

Magna Road signals did have some problems to begin with, but we’ve improved them.

Leigh Road – many positive comments, mainly from younger families.

BCP joined up with Dorset to access government funding.

King’s Park – completed, successful.

Junction improvements – Highway Code has changed in favour of pedestrians and cyclists.

We have stakeholder newsletter we’ll share with Forum.

Glenferness Avenue – rail bridge cycling improvements.

Cycle route to airport across Stour, negotiations ongoing with landowners.

Challenges – costs are going up significantly for a number of reasons (some global, some due to increased complexity of schemes, lack of workforce).

Consultation – comments coming in which we’re using to adapt designs.

We are now not able to deliver everything we wanted to in 2019 (at least not according to timetable; we’re trying to find new funding).

There was a public information event last October about works in the ward area.

I’m hopeful we’ll also get money to deal with potholes by doing whole road surface as part of these works.


Jean – there are no buses in Throop and Holdenhurst.

Marc – I can’t comment on that, but the bus companies need to consider what is viable for them. I will pass on your comment.

Re Stour proposals we are looking at how we mitigate flooding risk, there are also badgers.

Have been awarded some money towards Bus Services Improvement Plan (c£9m).

Wendy – people in Throop ask about horses getting over the river, will the bridge allow that?

Marc – at the moment, no (it will cost more money), but we are looking at that, possibly.

Member of public – I’m a bus enthusiast, are your figures for increased patronage based on Yellow buses’ passengers going to More Buses, or total figures? Also, the current £2 single ticket will run out in June. What about trams and trolley buses?

Marc – I’m pleased to see passenger numbers holding up or improving. I don’t deal with buses, of course trams would need significant funding.

Ian – Broadway Roundabout to Throop?

Marc – at design stage only due to increased costs.

Alan – real time info has worsened at Castlepoint, because the buses now stop/leave from library rather than outside post office and there is no real time info.

BAC bus is available, perhaps this could visit Throop and Holdenhurst.

Member of public – got soaking at a bus stop in Alma Road, I don’t think More Buses serve all the routes that were previously in place. Also, air pollution from buses.

Marc – the government is increasing standards. We can feed back your comments to our bus team colleagues.

Ray – why do the bus times often disappear from the real time information screens when the bus itself hasn’t arrived yet?

Marc – this may be because the signal kit on the bus stop has malfunctioned.