All change! Kidbrooke Park Road traffic experiment begins – and more roadworks at the Royal Standard

Kidbrooke Park Road - old signLater this month a new traffic experiment will start on Kidbrooke Park Road, with potentially far-reaching effects which local residents will want to have their say about.

Ever since the Rochester Way Relief Road (the A2 between the Sun-in-Sands and Eltham) was built in the late 1980s, traffic has been banned from turning right from Rochester Way into Kidbrooke Park Road. This was part of a package of measures to deter traffic from rat-running through Eltham and Kidbrooke whenever the new road was gridlocked.

The problem is that a lot of vehicles ignore this rule, or else turn left and then perform dangerous u-turns in one of the cul-de-sacs off Kidbrooke Park Road just to the south of the junction. Since Thomas Tallis School was rebuilt a few hundred yards north of its previous site, these u-turns are taking place where many schoolchildren cross the road to reach school each day.

Kidbrooke Park Road - no right turn sign by Thomas tallis School

Given these safety concerns, the council’s Highways Committee agreed some time ago to lift the ban on right turns here, for a trial period. The experiment will last six months and will start later in November (the exact date is not yet announced). The Highways Committee’s recent report on the matter can be found here.

Twenty-five years after the new motorway opened, it may be high time to look again at the local road network, and ask whether abolishing the ban on right turns here would make the road safer (longer term, the road network will need to be looked at very carefully if and when any new river crossings on the Peninsula are given the go-ahead, though a decision on these is some way off).

But Labour councillors want to see a careful analysis of the effects this experiment has, and proper consultation before any change is made permanent. Lifting the ban on right turns may make the road safer near Thomas Tallis School, which is important, but if it means permanent traffic jams up Kidbrooke Park Road northbound then another solution may need to be found. At the same time, I am asking the Highways department to extend double yellow lines northwards up Kidbrooke Park Road (currently they only go a little way past St John Fisher Church), due to unsafe parking there.

Please let me have your views – by email at or by commenting below.

Royal Standard 2013 - 4

Over at the Royal Standard gyratory, further resurfacing work will take place overnight on Monday November 18th and Tuesday November 19th, starting at 19.00 and finishing at 06.00 the following morning. The gyratory will be completely closed to through traffic over both nights, apart from the section where you enter from Westcombe Hill and exit via Charlton Road (towards Woolwich), which was resurfaced earlier this year. It is possible, though unlikely, that further works may have to take place on the Wednesday night if bad weather delays works on Monday and Tuesday.

Phase one of the works took place overnight in June, and my post at the time was entitled “For one night only?“. This was strictly true, in that the works were finished over one night to the northern part of the one-way system, Charlton Road, which is all that the council could afford to resurface at the time.

But since then, the council has found the money to resurface the southern part of the one-way system, including the junctions of Old Dover Road, Stratheden Road and Vanbrugh Park, as the condition of the roads there is just as bad.

So apologies to residents who face two more night of noisy roadworks, and to anyone inconvenienced by the traffic diversions. But I think overnight road closures are preferable to daytime ones, and the disruption is worthwhile if we get smarter, better streets without potholes.

I am also asking if some of the guardrail at the junction of Stratheden Road and Old Dover Road (near NatWest bank) can be removed to make it easier to cross the road without having to be corralled to the Pelican crossing.

The information letter that has been sent to businesses and residents around the Royal Standard can be found here. If anyone has any concerns about these roadworks, please get in touch.


3 Responses to All change! Kidbrooke Park Road traffic experiment begins – and more roadworks at the Royal Standard

  1. Mrs J Galley says:

    The right turn came into effect yesterday (Wednesday 20th Nov) and so far few people seem to be in the know. Also, the No Right Turn sign is still up. Kidbrooke Park Road was running very smoothly when I turned right this morning at 8.10am. When the rebuilding of Thomas Tallis was taking place, why oh why did the Council not take the opportunity to put a small roundabout there – makes the most sense!

    • Alex Grant says:

      Thanks. The experiment does not start until early December (exact date to be announced shortly) so the signs should still be there in the meantime.

      I agree a roundabout here may be a better option if the ban on right turns is lifted permanently, so hope this will be considered when the six-month trial ends.

  2. Dos says:

    I came across this post accidentally. I have been wandering what happened to the no right turn sign and why there is a police van monitoring it.
    I live just round the corner an the the right turn ban was very irritating and inconvenient for me. I fully support the new change although I don’t normally drive during peak times. We’ll done!

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