MEN Article On Levenshulme Bee Network Proposals

An article in the Manchester Evening News today (28 June 2020) raises concerns about the Levenshulme Bee Network proposals. This follows the announcement by Manchester City Council this week of a “pause” to the proposed trial that was due to start in July to allow for further consultation.

There is an extract below and you can read the full article HERE

“When plans to create a ‘fully-filtered’ neighbourhood through Levenshulme were first announced, there was enthusiasm from residents for how the area could soon become the most cycle-friendly place in Greater Manchester.

But as the impact of the plans is becoming clearer, disquiet is growing in the south Manchester suburb.

The Levenshulme Bee Network’s plans would see roads blocked to traffic by ‘modal filters’ that favour cyclists, school streets – which would restrict traffic during particular hours to make it safer for families to walk – and bus gates, stretches of road that are only open to buses, black cabs and push bikes.

The scheme would impact over 40 roads, junctions and schools.

But, following the publication of a map showing the locations of the proposed changes, some locals are concerned that traffic will be pushed into already busy roads to the benefit of quieter streets.

Others have complained that it could impact local businesses – and that the area’s elderly and non-English speaking residents have been shut out of what is supposed to be a community led project.”

Council Pauses Levenshulme Bee Network Project

Following intervention by Manchester City Council and local councillors the Levenshulme Bee Network project has been “paused” to allow for further consultation.

This follows considerable concern across our community after the Levenshulme Bee Network released proposals for a trial of 29 vehicle road blocks (referred to as “modal filters”) across the area.

The maps released by Levenshulme Bee Network at the end of May also included other things such as a series of new and improved pedestrian crossings, bike racks, a “parklet” and several bus gates blocking the road to other vehicles but these are not part of the trial that was due to start in July.

Levenshulme Community Association will continue to ensure our community is informed and involved as further information is available about what this means including how people can contribute and have their voices heard.

Levenshulme Bee Network Through Routes

A trial will start in July 2020 of some of the Levenshulme Bee Network changes to our roads. 29 locations will have changes with roads being blocked to vehicle traffic. But which roads will not be affected?

Residents have made their own maps to help people see which routes will not have road blocks to vehicles on them starting in July (referred to as “modal filters”). These roads are likely to have significantly increased traffic.

The reason these have been done is the Levenshulme Bee Network maps do not show which roads traffic in the area will be redirected onto and can be used as “through routes”. They have been done by residents to help everyone understand the impact of the project and so people can plan how to change the routes they take from July.

Roads that traffic will be diverted onto:

  • Albert Road
  • Barlow Road
  • Broom Lane 
  • Cromwell Grove 
  • Crossley Road
  • Grangethorpe Drive 
  • Hemmons Road
  • Kingsway 
  • Matthews Lane 
  • Moseley Road
  • Mount Road
  • Slade Lane (north of Albert Road)

See below for the maps. Further information on the July changes can be found HERE

Continue reading

Levenshulme Station Improvements

An update on improvements to Levenshulme Station from Afzal Khan MP

Thanks to pressure from Afzal Khan MP together with Levenshulme’s Labour councillors and local campaigners, there is now a start date for work to improve Levenshulme station. For many years, passengers have been subjected to flooding, poor lighting and an overall lack of cleanliness at the station, and it is hoped this work will dramatically improve passenger experience.

Earlier this year, local MP Afzal Khan visited Levenshulme station with representatives from Northern and Network Rail and walked through planned upgrades. Due to the COVID-19 outbreak, the upgrades due to start in Spring 2020 were significantly delayed. This week, Network Rail informed Mr Khan that works are now due to start in September 2020.

Afzal Khan MP said,

“I am delighted to have a new start date for the work. Levenshulme Station is a critical transport hub for the local community. Community groups, councillors and I have been campaigning for station improvements for many years and I am pleased that our hard work is starting to pay off.”

He continued,

“Despite this good news, I will be continuing to campaign to make our station accessible for all Levenshulme residents. It was incredibly disappointing that we were not awarded any Access for All funding from the Department for Transport in the last round of bidding, despite submitting a strong bid backed by a great community campaign. The truth is that the Tory Government has not allocated enough money for this work, and at the current rate it will take over fifty years for all of Greater Manchester’s stations to be made accessible.”

Cllr Bernard Stone said,

“Levenshulme’s Labour councillors – Dzidra [Noor] , Basat [Sheikh] and I – welcome the long overdue work being undertaken at Levenshulme Station. Local residents and Councillors have been pushing for this to be done for a long time. It is good to now have a definite start date.”

Videochats About Road Changes

Levenshulme Bee Network is holding a series of “webinars” on the “Filtered Neighbourhood Trials” starting in July 2020. These involve blocking off roads to motorised vehicles in 29 locations across the area. Pedestrians and cyclists can still access these roads through the “filters”.

Please see the LCA post HERE for full details including maps.

The Webinars will be held:

Saturday 4th July

  • 11.00-12.30 Chapel Street Park Area
  • 13.00-14.30 Cringle Park Area

Sunday 5th July

  • 11.00-12.30 Greenbank Park Area
  • 13.00-14.30 West Point Gardens Area

To participate in a webinar send and email to hello@levenshulmebeenetwork.co.uk quoting the Park Area you are interested in.

UPDATE

You can now register directly using the links below. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

Topic: Chapel Street Park Area Webinar + Q&A

  • When: Jul 4, 2020 11:00 AM
  • Register in advance for this webinar: HERE

Topic: Cringle Park Area Webinar + Q&A

  • When: Jul 4, 2020 01:00 PM
  • Register in advance for this webinar HERE

Topic: Greenbank Park Area Webinar + Q&A

  • When: Jul 5, 2020 11:00 AM
  • Register in advance for this webinar HERE

Topic: West Point Gardens Park Area Webinar + Q&A

  • When: Jul 5, 2020 01:00 PM
  • Register in advance for this webinar HERE

ANOTHER UPDATE

Q & A

If you would like to send in any questions for the Q and A – we are using the links below to collect questions so people can ask and then upvote the most popular ones to be answered in the sessions.

Submit Cringle Field Park Webinar questions HERE

Submit Chapel Street Park Webinar questions HERE 

Submit Greenbank Park Webinar questions HERE

Submit West Point Gardens Webinar questions HERE

If you would like to get in touch about anything please email trial@levenshulmebeenetwork.co.uk

Dramatic Road Changes From July 2020

Levenshulme and surrounding areas are about to experience major changes to our roads.

This is the first stage of the changes being imposed by the Levenshulme Bee Network Project. This is a new idea to create a “Filtered Neighbourhood” and to make walking and cycling easier by blocking off roads and restricting access for motorised vehicles. A whole host of other ideas are planned as well. This is just the start.

Travelling around Levenshulme and getting to and from the area will never be the same again.

12 June update

Please note that the information below was correct when it was posted. However, Levenshulme Bee Network has now changed the description on its website about the July 2020 changes. There is nothing on their website to indicate this has been changed.

Original text when the announcement was made:

“In the next few weeks we will be installing 29 temporary modal filters throughout the neighbourhood.

These will remain in place for a minimum of six months whilst we consult and tweak the filters with your feedback. They will then become permanent within 18 months.”

New text as of 12 June 2020:

“In the next few weeks we will be installing 29 temporary modal filters throughout the neighbourhood.

The trial will be undertaken using an experimental traffic regulation order which means that we can make changes following your feedback and monitor the impact for the first 6 months before the Council decides if the filters will be implemented on a permanent basis. All feedback from residents and monitoring of traffic, pedestrian and cycling levels as well as air quality levels will be considered before any of the filters are installed permanently.”

See below for details of the roads that will be affected, what will be done in July and maps including these changes.

Continue reading

TfGM Future Travel Survey

Transport for Greater Manchester is doing a survey on future travel arrangements. TfGM say:

“The coronavirus has affected all our lives, from how we work and shop to how we travel. Getting our future transport network right will be central to getting more and more of Greater Manchester moving again. We want to keep you safe, support our economy and ensure our recovery is sustainable, so we can cut congestion and have cleaner air.”

You can do the survey HERE (it takes about 15 minutes)

The survey deadline is 8am Monday 1 June 2020

New TfGM Travel Advice

Transport for Greater Manchester has released new travel advice.

“Coronavirus has affected all aspects of our lives, including how we travel. 

This week government published a new guide to help people understand if and when they should travel – and how to do so safely during the coronavirus outbreak in England. 

The guide gives advice for walking, cycling, driving and travelling on public transport. 

The Government’s latest advice is that you should stay at home as much as possible, work from home if you can, stay local and only travel if it is necessary. 

If you do have to travel, walk, cycle or drive if you can and continue to avoid public transport unless you have no other option – leave it for those with no alternative. 

Increased walking and cycling will be essential to reduce pressure on our roads and public transport networks so please do consider this as one of your options. 

If you have to use public transport, please help to keep yourself and others safe:

  • Wear a face covering when you travel
  • Keep a distance of 2 metres where possible on platforms, stops, stations and interchanges and while travelling on trams, trains and buses
  • Wash or sanitise your hands regularly – including before and after you travel – and carry a hand sanitiser with you if possible
  • Pay using contactless, apps or buy your tickets online if you can

Please be aware that a face covering is not the same as a surgical mask or respirator, these should be left for health and social care staff and other key workers who need them to protect against risks in their workplace. 

A cloth face covering should cover your mouth and nose while allowing you to breathe comfortably. You should wash your hands or use hand sanitiser before putting it on and after taking it off. Government has published an online guide on wearing and making a face covering

Where possible people using public transport should also look to travel outside of peak times in the morning and evening and leave extra time for journeys. Also make sure you check timetables before you travel. 

If you are an employer or employee about to return to a workplace which has recently reopened, TfGM has produced a factsheet with further information to support you.

For the latest updates on services, timetables and safety advice, visit the TfGM coronavirus webpage.

Please share this message with your friends, family and colleagues, and we’ll continue to keep you updated. 

Stay safe,

Stephen Rhodes 

Customer Director 

Transport for Greater Manchester 

See the advice on the TfGM website HERE

How to maintain your car when not driving regularly

How to maintain your car when not driving regularly

With the country in the middle of the coronavirus (COVID-19), you may not be able to get out and about in the car as much as you’re used to. Many will be wondering what to do with your car if you aren’t driving it on a regular basis.

What to do with your car, and how to maintain it, depends on how long you’re leaving your car idle. For example, you may be using it to top up on food and supplies or driving it if you work in an essential job or industry. But for many, you may not need or want to use your car for a lot longer, maybe even months.

Remember that even if you’re not using it, you’ll still have to insure your car unless you make a Statutory Off Road Notification (SORN). You can only make a SORN if the car’s being kept off the road.

Here are some commonly asked questions and answers:

How long can you leave a car without starting?

How long you leave a car without starting can depend on the condition of your car’s 12-volt battery. Most modern cars with a fairly healthy battery should last at least 2 weeks, without needing to be started up to re-charge the battery. If there’s any doubt about the condition of the battery, start it once a week just to be safe.

What happens if you don’t drive a car for a long time?

Even if you haven’t driven for a while your car should be fine. If it’s been regularly started and run for 15-minute periods, the battery should work. The tyre pressures should be checked and adjusted before driving. The brakes may have some corrosion on them, especially if the car was wet when it was parked up. Drive carefully and test the brakes as soon as possible. Make sure you use your brakes for the first few miles to clean off any corrosion.

Is it bad to leave a car unused?

Cars are made to be driven but with good care it should be fine. If it’s left unused follow our guidelines.

Can I leave my car parked for a month?

Yes, but it’s best to follow these guidelines to keep the car ready to drive.

How long can a car sit before the battery dies?

As we’ve said above, there are many factors that can affect this. The age of the battery, how the car’s been used and the temperature all affect the performance of a battery. If you follow our guidelines your battery shouldn’t let you down.

What if my MOT expires?

The government has announced a 6-month exemption from the MOT test, although your car must be kept in a roadworthy condition.

Here are a few simple tips on how to keep your car lasting longer and ready to use when you need it again.

Leaving your car parked for up to a month
  • Fuel – Before parking your car up for a long period, it’s a good idea to top up with fuel. Not only will this help with other measures, but a full tank doesn’t attract condensation, which could cause issues if allowed to build up over time.

  • Battery maintenance – If you can, connect your car’s battery to a mains-powered battery maintainer. If you can’t, start the engine once a week and allow it to run for about 15 minutes. This will re-charge the battery and help keep the engine in good condition. It’s important to allow the engine to run for this long so the battery can charge properly. In the case of petrol engine cars, it also helps to prevent engines from flooding with fuel. Never leave your car unattended with the engine running.

  • Brakes – Sometimes when a car’s parked up for a long period with the parking brake on, the brakes can seize. To prevent this it’s good practice to release the parking brake and move the vehicle a short distance back and forth, at the same time as running the engine. You shouldn’t leave the parking brake off unless the vehicle is on private land with the wheels securely chocked.

  • Electric vehicles – EVs and hybrid vehicles have 12-volt batteries, the same as conventional cars. However, they charge differently. Pressing the start button, so the ready light comes on, will operate the charging system. Doing this for 10 minutes once a week should keep the 12-volt battery topped up. Some electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles can maintain their 12-volt batteries if they’re plugged in to the mains charger. Check your vehicle handbook for details on this.

  • Garages – Don’t run a car engine inside a household garage as the exhaust fumes can be toxic. If you keep your car in a garage, pull it out onto the drive to run the engine to charge the battery.

  • Tyres – Before driving the car after a long period parked up, check all of the tyre pressures and inflate if needed.

Full advice from The AA is available HERE

Driving and MOTs extensions

Link to the new DVLA guidance HERE

Published 25 March 2020

From 30 March 2020, MOT due dates for cars, motorcycles and light vans will be extended by 6 months. This is being done to help prevent the spread of coronavirus.

There’s separate guidance about what to do if your MOT due date is up to and including 29 March 2020.

There are different temporary rules for MOT tests for lorries, buses and trailers.

What you need to do

You do not need to do anything to extend your vehicle’s MOT expiry date if it’s on or after 30 March 2020. However, you must keep your vehicle safe to drive.

Your vehicle will be automatically given a 6-month MOT exemption. This will extend your current MOT expiry date by 6 months.

ExampleYour vehicle’s MOT was due to expire on 3 April 2020.

This will automatically be extended to 3 October 2020. You will need to get your MOT by this date.

You can check your MOT history to see when you have been issued an exemption. It will not be updated straight away, so keep checking back if your new due date MOT is not yet showing.

You will not get a paper exemption certificate.

If your vehicle tax is due, you can tax your vehicle as soon as your MOT due date has been updated.

If your vehicle’s first MOT is due

Your vehicle will be automatically given a 6-month MOT exemption from the date its first MOT was due.

If your first MOT was due before 30 March 2020 and your vehicle did not pass

Your vehicle will not get an extension to its MOT due date.

Your vehicle will need to pass an MOT before you can drive it again.

The government is allowing MOT centres and garages to remain open. So you can still get an MOT if you need your vehicle:

  • to shop for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible
  • for any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person
  • to travel to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home

Read the full guidance on staying at home and away from others.

Keep your vehicle safe to drive

You must make sure your vehicle is safe to drive (‘roadworthy’). It can be unsafe even if your MOT expiry date has been extended.

Find out how to check your vehicle is safe and read the rules about vehicle maintenance, safety and security.

You can be fined up to £2,500, be banned from driving and get 3 penalty points for driving a vehicle in a dangerous condition.

You should still take your vehicle to be repaired at the nearest open garage. The government is allowing them to remain open.

Levenshulme Station Improvements

March 13 report from Afzal Khan on improvements to Levenshulme Station.

“Last week I attended a site visit to Levensulme Station with representatives from Northern and Network Rail, as well as one of the local councillors. In the past few years there has been a number of issues at the station including flooding, poor lighting, and overall lack of cleanliness. I was therefore delighted to be walked through the improvements that are due to take place in the Spring. 

These include:

  • Removing existing wall and ceiling cladding in the subway, including gutters and existing redundant and temporary light fittings
  • Deep clean and refurbish newly exposed glazed brick subway walls and fittings
  • Replace existing tiled subway floor with new concrete floor slab and resin floor finish
  • Install new lighting in the subway
  • Install new drainage channels along both subway walls to accept discharge from gutter downpipes, and any surface water from the subway floor
  • Remove existing ceilings above station entrance and platform stairs and install new boarded ceilings

While I was incredibly disappointed that Levenshulme Station wasn’t awarded any Access for All funding from the Department for Transport, despite submitting a very strong bid backed by a great community campaign, I will be continuing to explore other funding options to improve accessibility at this busy station.

However, I am very pleased that stations elsewhere in Manchester Gorton have been awarded Access for All funding. Work will start soon at Belle Vue and Ryder Brow railway stations to improve safety and accessibility.”

Fallowfield Loop £4.9m investment

£4.9 million investment announced for the Fallowfield Loop

Fallowfield Loop enhancements (£4.9m)
This scheme will create a 24/7, orbital cycle and walking route connecting Chorlton to Gorton. It is proposed to introduce new lighting and to improve access points along this 12km, traffic-free cycle path.

More information available HERE

https://www.manchester.gov.uk/news/article/8328/manchester_announces_new_walking_and_cycling_schemes_as_mayor_and_commissioner_call_on_government_for_long-term_funding_commitment