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There seems a defensiveness about the whole ‘streatery’ enterprise

24 September, 2020

The slip road in South End Green used by the 168 bus

• IT is interesting how letters of objection to the so called “streatery” are met with a swift rebuking response. It seems there is a certain defensiveness about the entire enterprise.

Much talk has been made of “democratic” and “wide consultations” around the plans for moving the 168 bus off South End Green.

Alas, as before, this would not seem to include the Mansfield neighbourhood; the first thing we ever saw or heard of was when a leaflet dropped onto our door mat, after the buses had moved.

We are also members of the Heath and Hampstead Society, and I don’t recall any mention of any 168 bus plans.

It is the Mansfield neighbourhood which is impacted by empty buses rattling through the already clogged Constantine and Fleet roads. And we remain opposed to empty buses without any benefit to our area.

As for any thought that the 168 bus stand on Fleet Road is “temporary”, or that the 168 can share space with the 24, this has always been a non-starter.

Back when the whole 168 bus issue came up, we in the Mansfield neighbourhood worked with the South End Green Association and other representatives to find a suitable alternative stand for the 168. Considered were on Rosslyn Hill (by the taxi stand), Chalk Farm, Parliament Hill, etc.

None were deemed workable and in fact there was a strident campaign to keep South End Close clear of 24 buses for residence access, with strict limits on the number of buses at any one time; 168 can never share that space and Transport for London has not shifted on this stance.

I am not sure how adding a few more tables outside coffee shops leads to regeneration of the fountain and square. At most times, even in fine weather, a majority of seats are empty; meanwhile the pedestrians are pushed out into the road, hemmed in by the unsightly barricade, blocking them from the fountain.

Camden, think again.

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