September 5, 2001
Protest at park's one-way road bid
THE latest suggestion for a one-way system around Priory Park, Prittlewell
has come under fire from conservationists.
- By GEOFF PERCIVAL
Roger Weaver, Southend Council's cabinet member in charge of transport, put
forward the suggestion in the hope of easing traffic congestion at Cuckoo
But his idea was attacked by Peter Walker, chairman of the Priory Park
Presevervation Society, formed to fight proposals to take part of the park
to allow Priory Crescent to become a dual carriageway.
Mr Walker said: "This proposal is nothing more than an attempt to divide the
huge majority of the residents of Southend who are opposed to his original
"In reality, it would make the park almost inaccessible to pedestrians as,
if the rest of the scheme was to work at all, two lanes of fast moving
traffic would isolate the park from the rest of the world.
"It is a horrendous scheme in many ways as unacceptable as bulldozing the
trees on the north side."
Mr Walker said he could put forward a number of cheap, environmentally
harmless and easily reversible suggestions which could be tried in order to
improve traffic flows.
Mr Weaver has repeatedly said he has no preference for any method of solving
the problems of Cuckoo Corner and Priory Crescent. All possibilities will be
looked at with full public consultation and a decision will be made by the
- Remove the view-restricting ornamental vegetation from Cuckoo Corner
roundabout, enabling drivers more time to see whether the road is clear.
This will enable them to approach at a slightly higher speed than they
- Improve the signposts at Progress Road and Bridgwater drive to encourage
Leigh and Westcliff-bound traffic to turn right sooner.
- Make serious efforts to reduce school runs by encouraging more walking
to school and car-sharing.
- Encourage business to adopt car sharing schemes as well as showers,
changing and storage facilities for people cycling to work.
- Ensure new developments on the east side of the town are kept to a
minimum to prevent further build up of traffic.
Priory plan rapped
READERs have voiced their opposition to plans to create a one-way system
around Priory Park to ease traffic congestion.
The idea was mooted by Roger Weaver, Tory executive councillor for
transport, following protests about proposals to cut into Priory Park for a
road widening scheme.
- Mrs Holding of Priory Crescent, said: "It would devalue my
property and make it very difficult to get out of my driveway with my
- Derek Roleh, also of Priory Crescent, added: "I live in the
fourth house down from the railway bridge and every morning I take my life
in my hands trying to reverse out of my drive into the street. If the
traffic is going to increase by 600 per cent coming down the one way system
I will not have a chance to get out at all."
- Mr Clark, of Southend, added: "Mr Weaver's one way system is
completely out of the question. It just going to make congestion worse. I
think he should be concentrating more on improving other routes out of
Southend and directing traffic away from the Priory Park area."
- Mrs Pace, of Priory Crescent, said: "It will move congestion from
Cuckoo Corner to an already busy junction at Victoria Ave and Fairfax Drive,
far from improving it will make it worse and at the same time inflict noise
and pollution on the residence."