Willow Brook managers explain traffic calming tweaks

Speed cushions at the Willow Brook Centre, Bradley Stoke

Managers at the Willow Brook Centre say they are continuing to “refine and improve” traffic calming measures with the ongoing objective of reducing the speed of vehicles entering and leaving the site, thereby “improving the safety of customers who visit the Centre”.

The shopping centre announced its intention to implement measures to “help drivers obey the speed limits” last September and eight sets of speed cushions were duly installed in November.

In a statement issued this afternoon, the Centre confirms that three sets of the speed cushions were removed on Tuesday this week (21st February), “in order to aid traffic flow”, adding that the adjustments have been made in response to customer feedback.

Today’s statement also confirms a comment attributed to Centre Manager Scott Lahive in a recent Evening Post article that there have been 50 recorded incidents and near misses in the area since the development opened in October 2008.

Other measures that have been introduced at the Centre to reduce speed and increase safety include fencing, additional signage and hazard markings.

Andy Oram, Operations Manager at the Willow Brook Centre said:

“In addition to the incidents on site, there have also been three major accidents outside the centre resulting in children being injured. We are appealing to the local community to reduce their speed not only in and around the centre, but across Bradley Stoke.”

“Here at the Willow Brook Centre we will continue to monitor safety and speed on a daily basis.”

Plans are said to be in place to upgrade the main pedestrian crossing at the Centre, which has been the subject of criticism from Journal readers on account of worn-out road markings and defective Belisha beacons.

Footnote: Today’s statement doesn’t mention that an additional speed cushion has been installed in the lay-by on the approach road into the Centre, which some drivers had been using to avoid one set of humps.

Photo (taken prior to this week’s tweaks): Speed cushions on the access road into the Willow Brook Centre.

Related link: Bradley Stoke Way road safety petition – Consultations overview page

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  1. So……….. how are drivers going to be made to drive at 10mph or less within the car park?? Thats the real danger for people walking across the car park.

    Once again today I found that once inside the car park, past the speed bumps drivers increased their speed quickly right up to normal road speed.

  2. and what about people swerving into the middle of the road to avoid the bumps? I have been nearly hit 3 times by people doing this, not being aware of others coming the opposite way, especially on the bend just past the first entrance to the car park.
    I agree that people need to slow down, but these bumps have increased the danger, in my opinion.

  3. I drive a sports car with very hard suspension. These speed bumps put me off from shopping in Tescos and the shopping centre. Driving through these bumps is very uncomfortable even in extra low speed. I do my shopping online from Sainsburys now.

  4. The changes do make better sense, but if they need to put ‘legal’ speed limit signs. currently there is just 1 10mph limit sign near the corner. They need to put signs up at the entrance on both sides of the road.

  5. I too haven’t seen any “safety” improvements with these speed bumps. I’ve nearly been hit 3 times since they were put in trying to cross the road.

    I no longer drive in to the centre as there are already so many of these awful style speed bumps around Bradley Stoke, my garage has even told my I have uneven tire wear on the inside of all my tires from all the speed bumps.

    I would suggest they invest in decent full road width bumps like the one on the bend, with a not so drastic incline! (that corner one really has too sharp of inclines, its like driving over bricks!)

    To sum it up, I don’t drive in there any more due to the speed bumps, I walk over and get what I can carry, anything else I need, I drive elsewhere.

  6. I went to Tesco last night for the first time since they’ve moved some of the speed bumps and nearly ended up in the back of someone when they broke hard due to a new speed bump that wasn’t there previously. All these speed bumps definitely make it more dangerous as everyone drives at ‘normal’ speed then break to almost a standstill to go over them (or just try to drive between them). I’ve been doing my shopping in Sainsburys & Aldi now as they seem to manage to have ‘safe’ car parks without the need for ridiculous speed bumps that wreck your car.

  7. Are the bumps correctly placed? I always thought it was more sensible to place them before a Zebra crossing, not after it. Having them neatly lined up in pairs seems to defeat the object when crossing by Argos and Subway.

  8. You have to love speed bumps. Since they have been put in I swear some people are driving faster (they appear to think this is the best way over them) and some people swerve in between them and into the path of oncoming cars (although I’ve seen very little of this). Great safety improvement.

    My favourite feature of speed bumps is that the only vehicles that can get over them unimpeded are large ones – buses, lorries, vans etc. – exactly the kind of vehicle that you don’t want to get hit by. Although I’m not suggesting that these vehicles are statistically more likely to hit you of course.

    Oh and the centre manager trying to link issues on this road with the tragic accidents on Bradley Stoke Way is a cheap shot.

  9. How much money has been spent on the roads in Bradley Stoke. Every road is covered from end to end with various lines and bumps. The bill must be huge. Is it all really necessary. The bus shelters have been replaced and moved around on a regular basis. There is harldy any more room on the roads to put any other lines bumps or instructions. Also when providers dig up the roads why are they not obligated to make the road good rather than slop a bit of tarmac over the holes they have made in view of all the money which is being spent.

  10. I bet there isn’t one driver who thinks to him/herself “what a wonderful thing these humps are, I really look forward to driving over them when I go to the Willow Brook Centre”. Yes they slow the traffic but they also infuriate drivers too. No wonder people are shopping elsewhere. There are speed humps that slow traffic but don’t give your car’s suspension a track-rod snapping thump such as the full width ones on Brook Way near the junction with Wheatfield Drive. They have a shallow incline, they lift and lower your car gently, not like the Willowbrook Centre’s, fail to get your wheels lined up perfectly on the exit from the centre and the groceries you so carefully packed to stop your fragile and soft items getting crushed are catapulted from one side of your car’s boot to the other.

  11. I can’t help thinking that the Willow Brook have missed a glorious business opportunity. They should have opened a vehicle maintenance facility to repair all the damaged car suspensions resulting from these nasty vicious speed humps. They would make a fortune.

    As for the previously quoted accident statistics I find these difficult to believe. I have never seen a single accident during many trips to the Willow Brook which leads me to think that the person that introduced such measures may have a specific item of male genitalia growing out of his forehead.

  12. I agree with all the comments about the speed bumps, but I find the most ridiculous/amusing thing is the large advertising sign on the corner as you exit the car park via the road that runs in front of Boots, Pets at Home etc – when you reach the top of that road and want to turn left at the T-Junction your view of cars approaching from the right is virtually completely obscured by the advertising hoarding …. advertising for … Spec-Savers!!!! Priceless!

    But seriously, it’s only a matter of time before there is a collision caused by the lack of visibility and having to edge so far forwards into the junction before being able to see vehicles approaching from the right.


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