Brockley Cross Breakthrough

We can't be consumed by our petty differences anymore. We will be united in our common interests. Perhaps it's fate that today is the Fourth of July, and you will once again be fighting for our freedom... Not from tyranny, oppression, or persecution... but from annihilation. We are fighting for our right to live. To exist. And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day the world declared in one voice: "We will not go quietly into the night!" We will not vanish without a fight! We're going to live on! We're going to survive! Today we celebrate our Independence Day!
- President Thomas Whitmore

Today is the first day in the rest of Brockley Cross' life.

Lewisham Council's traffic enforcement team has agreed to give the area special attention, having acknowledged that there are particular problems in the area. This is a welcome breakthrough, which together with planned measures to improve pedestrian access in the area, could transform Brockley Cross in to a civilised spot, if not quite Brockley's most lovely.

Having grumbled intermittently about the number and flagrancy of parking abuses in Brockley Cross, we approached the Council about the problem, to see what had happened in the twelve months since we'd first raised the issue.

Our enquiry was dealt with very quickly and we were passed on to the person at Lewisham Council responsible for traffic enforcement in the area. She explained that they had been aware of public complaints about the area and had asked the contractors to pay special attention to it. However, over the last year, they had visited Brockley Cross 167 times in 2010 and only issued one ticket (although Endwell Road generated many more).

It turns out that the following may have contributed to that result:

- It’s a mobile unit that drives through the area – which means that they’re probably assuming the double-parked cars are actually stuck in traffic

- The contractor is not directly financially incentivised to issue tickets – the contract is based on performance indicators. So complaining to the Council is probably the best way to incentivise them, because regular complaints could harm their chances of having their contract renewed (it’s up for renewal next year)

- Based on the photo evidence we saw, their focus to-date has been the stretch of road right outside the Tea Factory, not the bits where the problems are

So the Council Officer asked the contractor to look again at Brockley Cross, this time focusing on the area next to the shops. This morning, they reported back that “it appears that the location needs to have an increased enforcement presence... We will be increasing the MPU patrols in the area in addition to the Mopeds that patrol and will conduct further spot checks on the site in the next few weeks to see if things have improved.”

Thanks to Lewisham Council for taking the matter seriously - we look forward to seeing the results in the coming weeks.