Archive for March, 2013

Traffic trends at major local junctions

23 Mar

Ever wondered how busy local traffic junctions are? The charts below show traffic trends for three major local junctions:  (1) Vauxhall Gyratory (2) Oval Crossing and (3) Kennington Cross. The Department for Transport does not produce official statistics on how busy such junctions are but this can be estimated from the traffic flows on roads which feed into and out of these junctions. Not surprisingly, Vauxhall Gyratory is the busiest local junction with the Oval Crossing in second place followed by Kennington Cross.

Pedal cycle trends at local junctions
Since 2000, the largest increase in pedal cycle traffic has been at the Oval Crossing which has shown a three fold increase.  In constrast, Vauxhall gyratory has seen a modest increase having only doubled.  If volume of cyclists is a measure of how busy a junction is then Oval Crossing is some 3/4 of the size of Vauxhall Gyratory.  If the current trends continue, it could be as big, at least on this measure,  within 10 years.

Of course cycling isn’t the only way to measure how busy a junction. In 2011, there was some 12 times as much motor vehicle as pedal cycle traffic. Unlike pedal cycles, motor traffic has been decreasing. Since 2000, motor vehicle traffic around the Vauxhall Gyratory and Oval Crossing have decreased by approximately one third.  A key reason for the reduction of was the London congestion charge which was introduced in February 2003.  The impact of the western extension to the congestion charge zone which ran from February 2007 to January 2011 is less clear.
Motor traffic trends at local junctions


Data sources and quality: National Road Traffic Survey, Department for Transport.

The following link has detailed traffic statistics for Lambeth with an interactive map DfT ask that the following warning be used when citing this data “Traffic figures at regional and national level are robust and are reported as National Statistics. However, this is not the case for road traffic at a local level.”


Local residents and children driven away by Ashmole refurbishment works

23 Mar

It appears that the works currently going on around the Asmole Stores may be keeping people away.  The panorama picture below shows the area around the shop at school closing time – a period when the area should be thriving with people.  Children frequently play in this area but the amount of space currently fenced off, prevents them from doing so.  Having met with some parents and other local residents to canvas their views on the proposed new parking bays outside Ashmole Stores (the area with the paving slabs removed on the left of the picture).  I have yet to come across any local people who think this is a good idea.  The pedestrian area would be much reduced to the detriment of Ashmole Stores,local houses and those who use the space.

Ashmole stores panorama

Not all residents can voice their disapproval. This particular one doesn’t seem too happy with the temporary fencing.

Dog by temporary fencing outside Ashmole Stores


Work on new Ashmole parking spaces suspended

16 Mar

Work on controversial new parking bays by Ashmole Stores in Claylands Road has been suspended following a petition by local residents and second thoughts by the Metropolitan Housing Trust and their contractor Ridons. The picture below shows the location of the proposed parking bays which would encroach on a pedestrian area frequented by local children.
Proposed parking bays by Ashmole Stores Plans for the new parking bays were approved by Lambeth in 2011 as part of larger planned improvements to the Ashmole Estate. Presumably the consequences of approving this aspect of the development was overlooked by local planners. Any measure which promotes traffic in the vicinity of a school (two in this case) should be properly risk assessed. The proposed parking bays would also have an adverse impact on the Ashmole Stores discouraging customers due to the restricted access.

Analysis of local traffic flows (on Clapham Road) indicates that average daily traffic flows have reduced by more than a third since 2001. In contrast, cycling has almost tripled. Less that half of households in the Oval Ward now own cars and the trend towards decreased reliance on cars seems set to continue. Given that existing car parking spaces are not fully utilised, it does seem surprising that resources should be spent on increasing numbers of parking spaces.


Traffic trends on Clapham Road

16 Mar

Anyone familiar with the traffic on Clapham Road will have noticed some changes in recent years.  The chart below shows the trends for the traffic census point on Clapham Road near Fentiman Road.
Clapham Road Traffic Trends

You don’t have to be an analyst to realise that the volumes of motor vehicles have dropped considerably while the number of cyclists have been increasing. Since 2001, average daily traffic flows of motor vehicles at this census point have dropped by more that a third to some 27,000 vehicles per day in 2011. No doubt the congegestion charge introduced in February 2003, contributed to the rapid drop over the following year. In contrast, the number of cyclists have almost tripled since 2001 to some 1,700 per day.

There has been one cycling and another motor cycling fatalilty on this section of road in recent years and I have personally witnessed many near misses. Now that the traffic patterns have changed so much, let’s hope that more effort is put into making roads like this safer for all users.

Source and quality of data: National Road Traffic Survey, Department for Transport.

The following link has detailed traffic statistics for Lambeth with an interactive map  DfT ask that the following warning be used when citing this data  “Traffic figures at regional and national level are robust and are reported as National Statistics. However, this is not the case for road traffic at a local level.”



Local Plan consultation 15 March to 26 April 2013

13 Mar

For the forgetful amongst us who claim they didn’t know something was happening, this is an important opportunity to give feedback on the Local Plan approved on 11 February 2013 by Lambeth Council’s Cabinet

The local plan and an online questionnaire will be published at


You can also view the docuemtns at all local Lambeth libraries and at the planning advice desk on the ground floor of Phoenix House  – it’s opposite the bus station  at Vauxhall in the St George Wharf development.

You can even ask for copies by telephoning 020 7926 2623. Lambeth representatives will be attending local meetings throughout the consultation and planning policy officers will be available to discuss the draft plan on Tuesday afternoons between 2pm and 5pm at Phoenix House and ask at reception.

You can even send in views by post or e-mail .

Freepost address: Freepost RTAJ-RJHC-CAGU, Lambeth Local Plan consultation, 1st floor Phoenix House, 10 Wandsworth Road, London SW8 2LL

Let it not be said that Lambeth haven’t consulted local residents becuase they are certainly trying




Vauxhall at night time

12 Mar

Vauxhall at night timeThis is the night time view from the pedestrian bridge at Vauxhall.  Surely there are some better local viewpoints for night time photos than this but it will have to wait for warmer weather before I venture out again …unless someone from St George Wharf wants to invite me in to take a few shots 🙂


Blowing Dandelion – fresh handmade chocolates at the Oval Farmers Market

12 Mar

If you have ever seen the film Chocolat then you may care to check out the Blowing Dandelion ( see stall at the Oval Farmers’ Market each Saturday.  It is a pleasure to have such wonderful fresh handmade chocolates, many with fruit fillings, available at the market.  I was taken aback by their chocolate postcards and can’t resist the odd chocolate treat when I’m passing by.  Here are a few photos to celebrate this magnificent addition to the market.


Max and Melia – the best shop display in the Oval neighbourhood?

11 Mar

Max and Melia on the Oval Parade is a boutique selling home accessories and gifts.  They also sell products on line (see  They opened in Autumn 2012 and their displays seem to be changing with the season.  I was particularly impressed with their Christmas display and they kindly let me indulge my passion for photography.  Here are a few examples of what was on sale.


Welcome to Oval Eyes

11 Mar

A belated welcome to Oval Eyes – a new local optician which opened late last year.

The new opticians on the Oval Parade

The new opticians on the Oval Parade