To agree any topics for future meetings, of which prior notice must be sent to the Chairman and Democratic Services Officer no later than 4pm on the working day before the meeting. There can not be any substantive debate/discussion or any decision on any topics raised, except to agree whether the topic may come forward in future.
Paul Mason, Tunbridge Wells Bicycle Users Group (TWBUG) had registered to speak which included the following:
- The JTB was the only forum for discussions of plans made by TWBC but that needed Kent CC to implement.
- There were a number of plans that were rarely discussed at the JTB and for which it was suggested they now be included.
- Some examples of suggested topics that should be considered as standing items for the JTB included:
o Carbon neutral status by 2030.
o Walking and cycling targets in the Kent Active Travel Strategy.
o The cycling network as set out in TWBC’ s Cycling Strategy.
o TWBC’s Transport Strategy.
- Last year the Government published 4 radical documents:
o Decarbonising and Transport Plan.
o Gear Change.
o Changes to the Highway Code.
o Design Manual for Cycling Infrastructure.
- A proposal was requested for a single agenda item that encompassed these elements perhaps under the banner of Active Travel.
Discussion included the following comments:
- The proposals from Cllr Scott were about de-carbonising. Additionally with regards to electric vehicles, it was about private enterprises bearing the cost of these items. The Council would be the enabling body that would provide the facilities for light vehicles. It was also about reducing the number of heavy vehicles in the centre of town.
- In the first instance Kent CC agreed to take the information away regarding the use of light electric vehicles for further consideration regarding viability and funding.
- The second proposal from Cllr Scott related to the bus and pedestrian area around Tesco’s. Better bus provision and enhanced pedestrian areas would be beneficial for local residents and businesses. Further discussion with officers would be necessary before a decision could be taken to take it forward.
- Cllr Lidstone requested that Cornford Lane/Halls Hole Road be included as a future agenda item (picking up from the action point at the meeting on 25 January 2021). Details of next steps should be brought forward at the next meeting.
- The concept of having something similar to a Highways Improvements Plan (HIP) in the unparished areas of the borough could be beneficial for issues such as Cornford Lane. The model of the HIP could be a good way of taking this forward.
- It was suggested that a contact at TWBC (Highways Team) could liaise with Kent CC to consider and prioritise issues with the view of making an Action Plan similar to what was done in the Parishes.
- Finding solutions to traffic problems was something that Councillors were entrusted to do.
- A vote was requested for ‘Next Steps for Cornford Lane and Halls Hole Road’ to be included on the next agenda.
- There was concern about what putting Cornford Lane on the next agenda would achieve. Kent CC Highways had made clear unless and until new evidence was available, no further action could be taken at this time. It was highly unlikely that Kent CC officers would move from their current recommendations.
- There should be an opportunity for Councillors and residents to sit down and listen to concerns raised.
- It was noted that there had been many discussions with residents on this issue. To discuss further must include a realistic outcome, which was not possible at this time.
- Public money must be used where it was most useful.
- A new document produced by Kent CC called Vision Zero took much more account of potential injuries and risk, rather than actual injuries and risk. This new strategy might well assist the residents of Cornford Lane to get their issues promoted higher up the list of priorities.
- It was suggested that there should be a watching brief on this issue and as and when new evidence was available then bring it back to the JTB. It would have a better chance of an outcome being achieved.
- The issue of Pembury Road was also a major concern which would require a radical solution. Until the issue of Pembury Road was addressed the conflict with traffic on Cornford Lane was likely to continue.
- There was support for including Active Travel as an item on the JTB.
- Decarbonising and improvements to the Environment should also be included. It would be better to have a broad title.
- Kent CC’s Vision Zero looked at transport in its entirety, cycling, footpaths, road junctions, road casualties etc. This would make a good standing agenda item.
- It was agreed the document should be circulated to all Members in advance of the next meeting. The document would then be reviewed by Members and discussed at the next meeting.
- After the initial discussion Members would be able to decide on individual items to discuss in more depth at future meetings.
- An all Councillor Member Briefing was also requested.
- Members agreed that Vision Zero would be included as a discussion item at the next JTB meeting.
A vote was taken that Cornford Lane/Halls Hole Road be only brought back to the JTB as and when there was evidence to support a review of the current position.
RESOLVED - Cornford Lane/Halls Hole Road would not be included as an agenda item at the next meeting.