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Lorry Ban:
An interim report by The Greenwich Society

From the Greenwich Society Newsletter, August 1996

The ban on lorries of 7.5 tonnes or more on Romney Road, in effect since 7 May 1996, will continue until October/November, at which time Greenwich council will decide whether to ask the Traffic Director for London to make the ban permanent. Various traffic counts, pollution measurements and local residentsí views will provide the basis for LBG's decision.

Over 100 volunteers from Greenwich Society and most of the other major amenity societies and many residents groups joined together to quantify some of the patterns emerging from the ban. Traffic counts, identifying lorries of 7.5 tonnes or over were made for two days in April before the ban commenced and two days in June from 07:00 to 19:00 at several locations (Romney Road, Blackheath Hill, Shooters Hill Road, Crooms Hill, Hyde Vale, Hare & Billet, Princess of Wales, Duke Humphrey/Long Pond Road, Westcombe Hill, Vanbrugh Hill/Westcombe Park Road and Maze Hill) revealed the following results:

From 07:00 to 19:00AprilJune
Romney Road
To London8492 cars
828 7.5T+ lorries
9639 cars
216 7.5T+ lorries
Away from London8800 cars
842 7.5T+ lorries
10384 cars
202 7.5T+ lorries
Blackheath Hill
To London11904 cars
876 7.5T+ lorries
11208 cars
1572 7.5T+ lorries
Away from London11368 cars
808 7.5T+ lorries
10104 cars
1448 7.5T+ lorries

As July and August are relatively quiet traffic months, it will not be until September that the results of the ban can be fully assessed. It is hoped that better police enforcement will take place at that time. Much of the avoidance of the ban takes place when Blackheath Hill is moving slowly.

Romney Road has lost 75% of its heavy lorry traffic (a total of 418 lorries infringing the ban--many during the early afternoon when the A2 route over Blackheath becomes very slow). Blackheath Hill has seen a rise in lorries of 80%--suggesting that nearly all the lorries banned from Romney Road now use the Blackheath Hill route. Given greater enforcement, over 400 more lorries may do so.

Heavy traffic was recorded on "minor roads" on the Heath (2000 cars and 200 lorries along Long Pond Road and Duke Humphrey Road) as these leave the traffic queues on the A2.

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