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Welcome to Ilkley Civic Society

We are a local group interested in Ilkley past and present. We meet regularly to help preserve, develop, improve and research features of historic or public interest in Ilkley. We seek to promote high standards of planning and architecture and educate the public in geography, history, natural history and architecture. We also work with local schools and welcome people sharing information and memories about Ilkley. We reply to all enquiries. Come along to one of our public meetings or guided heritage walks or talks and find out more. Everyone welcome.


20mph Zone Consultation response

Ilkley – Ben Rhydding -  Whole town 20 mph zone

BMDC Consultation December 2022.

Following the face to face consultation run by Bradford Council on 13th December with CBMC highways officers, Ilkley Town Council councillors, Keighley & Ilkley  Ward Officers in attendance at the Clarke Foley centre in Ilkley. Ilkley Civic Society wishes to make the following comments-

On display were a number of maps depicting possible locations of traffic calming ‘tables’ and ‘cushions’, speed survey results  and a map showing accidents in the town.

No text documents available explaining the project background or its aims and objectives or its critical success factors.

No list of organisations consulted formally by CBMC was available, we can confirm as we did on the day, when asked, that Ilkley Civic Society was not involved in this process.

There was no explanation of how the roads were selected. Some are broad and quiet (Clifton Rd) while some are reduced to a single lane by parking which already reduces traffic speed. (Little Lane, Springs Lane and Bolling Rd). No information was provided on lessons learnt in other similar sized towns, has this exercise been undertaken?

The Accident map showing high ( fatal), medium and minor injury situations did not provide any information on the type of accident eg vehicle/ vehicle , vehicle / feature  or vehicle / pedestrian and therefore it was not possible to identify the issues that need resolution. There was however a concentration of accidents in the town centre but virtually none in west Ilkley yet this area is proposed for inclusion in the zone.

Bus routes are not shown. The impact on bus services needs to be analysed in terms of longer journey times and re routing. This should include regular private hire school services. Bus use should be encouraged but how will this proposal do this?

The On-line version of the map is ‘unresponsive’ for long periods of time?? ( Helen not sure what this means) . Even less information is available on line as no speed survey or accident location plans are available and no basis for the proposal. The ‘purpose of the consultation’ consists of one sentence?

The one road which could do with restriction is Keighley Road, which is heavily used by walkers. Essential users’ access must be retained here.

There was no reference to the Local Plan, Neighbourhood Plan, Design Statement, Wharfedale Greenway Plan or the existing Yorkshire Dales Cycleway, with which this project should dovetail.

There appears to be no information on funding which is understood to be a finite sum and is insufficient to complete everything that is proposed. The elements of the project have not been prioritised so that the order of works completion/execution is not apparent. It is clearly preferable to work to a clear high quality prioritised plan over a period of phases rather than   a complete scheme of low quality highway works that Ilkley has suffered from in the past.

The maps did not depict existing street furniture (crossings, traffic islands, signs, lights and street trees) or how the traffic calming would fit with private access drives on the residential/ business roads or those with high levels of public and resident’s car parking. Some businesses need HGV access (eg petrol stations, supermarkets and industrial units) and this should be accommodated. No information was provided on signing for the proposal warning of the zone, at the boundaries and within the zone. Technical drawings are not easily understood by many members of the public and there were no photos of the proposed ’tables’ and ‘cushions’. ICS would be concerned if proliferation of the already over signed town was to further damage the ‘Sense of Place’ in the historic areas of the town. ‘Sense of Place’ is incorporated in the current levelling up Bill as a measure of success.

Where a road is routinely parked up on both sides where is the proposed traffic calming going to be placed, taking account the need of all road users, including cyclists?

The impact on the A65 traffic lights at Brook Street / Leeds Road needs to be analysed carefully to ensure that congestion is minimised. It appears that the 20mph zone applies to the A65 at this point .The A65 is already subject to partial coordinated traffic control at all the traffic lights between Victoria Avenue and Wheatley Lane following the traffic study in around 2002. The highways officer present seemed unaware that the A65 was detrunked some years ago and therefore different standards of highway management we assume must apply?

The schools where there are particular problems were not highlighted. Two of the schools have access points which are excluded from the 20mph blanket zone (Ashlands and All Saints, both on the de-trunked A65). The issue of the Springs Lane zebra crossings at school times is one of the most dangerous for children and young people.

It would be technically possible to have a reduced speed limit at particular times of day around schools hours (as in Scotland), as opposed to 24 hours, but this does not seem to have been considered yet.

There may be other services which need to be specially considered such as the hospital, residential and nursing homes, children’s facilities, places of worship and private health providers such as dentists, physios, parks etc.

It was not clear if the suggested traffic calming applied in both directions on a two-way road. There was an indication from the map data that increased speed was not an issue in both directions on some roads.

Speed can also be controlled by pinch points and priority arrows; this does not appear to have been considered

Tables have been proposed for those lengths of Springs La / Bolling Rd but past experience of Bradford installing these without consideration of road drainage has not been good. What is the logic for so many tables, 10 on Bollling road between the existing ones ( not shown on drawings)

Data used is understood to be 3 years old ie pre-pandemic. This needs to be up to date.

There are odd gaps in the traffic calming where vehicles can speed up as there are no humps - eg the very steep section of Wheatley Lane and the narrow part of Springs Lane. It is not known if these gaps were intended? The only road with average speeds of over 40mph (Queens Rd ) does not have any cushions highlights the lack of reasoning for some of the proposals 

The optional Area around Ash Grove surely merits a different treatment as a ‘Home Zone’? as may the Lister St area.

There has been some discussion on-line about emergency services staff being permitted to go over the speed limit. Has this particular need been taken into account?

Any proposal will need some enforcement to be successful but we have been given no indication of the involvement of West Yorkshire Police?

 Ilkley Civic Society concludes that it cannot support this proposal as it stands without information on the reasons behind the decision making process used. We suggest that if the aim is to reduce accidents to pedestrians a far more effective proposal would be to conduct the urban realm study of the town centre as committed to  by CBMC  following the parking review of the town. This would look at making routes in the town centre safer and easier for pedestrians and cyclists as per the recent ‘hierarchy’ introduced in the revised Highway Code.  This study would also take into account issues of design within the conservation areas which a purely highway scheme will not. It would  we suggest cover a much reduced area of the town plus schools, hospital/ heath centre and other higher risk areas only and have a different emphasis .  

ICS 21.12.22