The Botsford Road Low Traffic Neighbourhood (LTN) is one of four in Merton.
A “no right turn” restriction has been implemented. It is designed to tackle part of the problem of through traffic from those who do not live in the area. As it stands, it does not represent a full LTN for the area.
What is the traffic issue here?
There is a long-standing issue of drivers using Botsford Road as a short cut. There are two different variants of the short cut:
- Traffic from Kingston Road heading for Martin Way that is unwilling to wait at the traffic lights on Bushey Road (the red lines on the map)
- Traffic from Bushey Road heading for Aylward Road and Merton Park that is unwilling to travel via Kingston Road or Martin Way to Mostyn Road (the purple lines on the map):
Merton Council has made a change, described as an LTN, that tackles the first type of short cut. For an initial six month trial period no right turn is allowed from Botsford Road to Whatley Avenue:
The no right turn order is intended to reduce the number of drivers using the short cut from Kingston Road to Martin Way. However as the map shows, and unlike a typical LTN, traffic can still flow down Botsford Road, and some will now displace onto unsuitable roads like Haynt Walk and Springfield Avenue.
The problem has got worse in recent years as mobile phone sat-navs have taken drivers down short cuts like these with the aim of saving a minute or two. And COVID-19 is making things worse – with public transport dramatically reduced people are attempting to drive instead, causing more congestion and more use of residential streets like those in this neighbourhood.
The no right turn restriction was implemented following discussion with ward councillors. The Merton Residents’ Transport Group believe that a full LTN for the area would be a better solution, but so far there has been an unwillingness to grasp the benefits. The no right turn restriction does however represent an experiment. Residents are perfectly entitled to ask for stronger measures such as a full LTN. The three main LTN options are detailed here:
Option 3: Closing Botsford Road to motor vehicles, retaining access for residents, deliveries, trade and emergencies:
Option 4: Closing Botsford Road and Whatley Road to motor vehicles, retaining access for residents, deliveries, trade and emergencies:
Option 5: Closing Botsford Road and Cannon Hill Lane to motor vehicles, retaining access for residents, deliveries, trade and emergencies:
Option 5 is the only one that provides significant benefits to pupils of Rutlish school, by reducing through traffic on the narrow northern section of Cannon Hill Lane. Cannon Hill Lane is also one of Merton’s designated cycles routes. As such, option 5 is favoured by the Merton Residents’ Transport Group, however the group acknowledges that option 3 or 4 would represent a significant improvement from the current no right turn restriction.
For more information on the available options for the area, see this mini-site.
For more information about LTNs in general, see our Overview page.
Respond to the consultation!
If you support the no right turn, or want to see stronger measures implemented, please respond to the Merton Council consultation. For example, it is perfectly acceptable to respond to the consultation along the lines of “The no right turn does not go far enough, I support a full LTN for the area”. This is especially important if you live locally, as local opinions will count more than those from elsewhere.