Residents protest against permanent barrier at Staveley Rd

Image above: Protestors including residents, councillors and anti-streetspace activists demonstrating against the Staveley Rd barrier

A small group of protesters staged a demonstration on Wednesday (23 February), objecting to the introduction of a barrier to Staveley Rd in Grove Park.

The residential road, famous for its cherry trees, has been divided by a plastic barrier since October 2020, to stop commuters cutting through. Staveley Rd used to see high volumes of traffic, 70% of which were not visiting Staveley Rd but just driving straight through.

There were over 5,500 vehicles using the road on an average weekday, with just under 500 vehicles using it in the busiest hour during the week.

While Staveley Rd residents have welcomed the change, some of the residents in Park Rd, which crosses Staveley Rd, object to the barrier, which LB Hounslow is now making permanent. The barrier’s installation has meant far less traffic along Staveley road, but anyone driving through the road now is obliged to turn into Park Rd at the barrier.

LB Hounslow say an independent review of the traffic data and consultation responses received during the trial period was undertaken, which informed the decision to make this measure permanent.  Implementation is expected to commence ‘in early 2022’.

Image above: proposals for a permanent barrier at Staveley Road/ Park road

Councillors and OneChiswick members join protest

Turnham Green ward councillor Joanna Biddolph visited to show her support for the protest, as did Chiswick Homefields councillor John Todd. Sam Hearn, a Chiswick Riverside councillor, who lives on Park Road, was also present.

David Giles, who campaigns against the Council’s Streetspace initiatives, was also there. He posted about the protest on the OneChiswick Facebook page. Giles was expelled from the Conservative Party in 2021 for his comments about Hounslow’s cabinet, who he described as the “Brentford Taliban”. He said:

“The main problem on Staveley Road is speeding which LB Hounslow and the Metropolitan Police have done nothing to prevent. There are no speed cameras anywhere in Grove Park.”

Images above: cherry blossoms along Staveley Road

Protestors ask Keir Starmer to force resignation of Hounslow Cabinet

The Park Rd residents group, established to fight the council’s installation of the barrier, recently wrote to Leader of the Labour Party Keir Starmer asking him to ‘stand up’ to Hounslow’s cabinet and ask them to resign. The group argued that the Labour-led council are ‘in breach of their public duty and have created such public distrust that these actions could represent misfeasance’.

At time of writing, there has been no published response from the Leader of the Opposition.

Images above: Staveley Road/ Park Road protestors in 2020

Overwhelming support for the barrier from residents of Staveley Rd

When the temporary barrier was first installed, The Chiswick Calendar carried out a survey of Park Rd and Staveley Road, asking every household who lived on the two streets their view. The results showed overwhelming support for the barrier from the Staveley Rd dwellers. Some residents in Park Rd were also in favour.

Read more stories on The Chiswick Calendar

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