Traffic Problems
Sun Apr 05 2020 
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tunbridge wells town
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Traffic Chaos Hits Local Kentish Towns

As the ever increasing volume of traffic constantly pounds through the high streets of towns and villages across Kent day after day, creating hold-ups, severe congestion, speeding, pollution, accidents, and severe damage to the road surface, Kent County Council, and the Kent Highway Service officials are in serious debate of how to resolve this continual problem, and the serious increase of traffic in the county.

The county of Kent is basically in the “firing line” for all the European traffic passing through the ferry port of Dover, especially the massive HGV's lorries that are trading and delivering all across the country.

This in itself is a necessity of business, but the chaos that it brings when these massive lorries pass through small towns and villages to their destination, has seen the residents over many years past and present protesting adamantly and angrily, about the terrible blighting of their own communities by these huge monsters.

Not only is the exhaust pollution that they bring an added health risk, but  many residents and children have narrowly missed serious injury and death, as these huge lorries plough through the narrow streets, some unavoidably mounting the pavements to avoid a collision with other vehicles. 

What with these situations growing daily, local residents in towns and villages throughout the county, who are confronted by this daily onslaught of traffic, are desperate for those in authority to find a solution.


Traffic Chaos Hits Local Kentish Towns

The small county town of Westerham, now finds itself fighting a severe and serious  traffic situation, as the problems there with congestion have increased dramatically in the last few years, but has now reached a serious level.

Local residents and shopkeepers are hoping that the local Parish Council will come up with some answers to this ever growing problem.

Westerham has suffered for many years from traffic problems, as it lies directly on the main road from Sevenoaks. This road caters for the massive volume of vehicles that pass through the town to Oxted, in Surrey, and further afield.

Years ago all the traffic going in the direction of Biggin Hill, Bromley, and South London, had to enter the town and take the main turn off in the high street, this caused untold traffic jams and misery for the local residents.


A new bypass was built a few miles before reaching Westerham, on the Sevenoaks side, this allowed the massive amount of traffic from that area to miss the town and head towards London.

Although it solved this particular problem, it didn't compensate for the massive volume of traffic which ran directly through the main high street, as this was the only direct route available for all the traffic in reaching the M25 motorway.

Hopefully this will soon be resolved and the serious traffic problem that blights the town eliminated, much to the delight of the residents and shopkeepers of the town.

In Sevenoaks, a short time ago, two articulated lorries trying to negotiate the narrow high street and pass each other, caused an accident as one of the lorries mounted the pavement and hit the eaves of Grade II Tudor listed building, causing damage that will cost the owner over £1, 000 to repair.

Only last week in Tunbridge Wells, the local Town Council, after many months of discussions and debates about their own towns traffic problems, have still not reached any decision of how to combat the severe congestion that faces the town. Ideas were put forward in an endeavour to assist with the flow of traffic, but this problem will certainly take many months, if not longer to try and resolve.

The small town of Edenbridge, has had far more that its fair share of traffic problems over the last 20-30 years, especially with the narrow high street. What with massive lorries, and the extreme volume of cars and vans passing through the town, this too became a constant “headache” for the local residents, and frustration for the drivers trying to make deliveries to shops in the high street, which caused severe traffic hold-ups.

This finally came to an end, when the local town council proposed that a new road be built skirting the main high street, it was hoped that this would ease the dilemma of excessive traffic passing through the town.


When the new bypass was introduced a few years ago, it relieved the town from the majority of vehicles, but to the anger of shopkeepers along the high street, this had resolved one problem, and added another, for their businesses were now suffering as a result of the by-pass, as most of the traffic was avoiding the shops by using the relief road, therefore customers were lost, and trade suffered.

Traffic Chaos Hits Local Kentish Towns

But those shopkeepers along the busy high street in Westerham, who rely on passing trade, may suffer in the same manner as those in Edenbridge did, and as they have done in many other towns in Kent, where a bypass has been used to divert the traffic away from the main shopping areas and prevent traffic congestion.

If many towns in Kent take this course of action and build bypasses that skirts the main high streets where most of the shops are located, then it is very possible that the shopkeepers trade will be affected, this is certainly not what they need at a time when every “penny” counts, and the recession bites deeper into their pockets and profits.

Traffic Chaos Hits Local Kentish Towns

Officials from Westerham Parish Council, Kent County Council, and the Kent Highway Service, are determined to find a solution to this problem, and they all seem to be in agreement that resolving this traffic congestion needs to take priority in the coming months, and are now devising different plans so that traffic can possibly use an alternative route and bypass the town, whether this will come to fruition soon, to benefit the town and the traffic congestion, only time will tell.