The A229 is an arterial trunk route that passes through the centre of Linton village. It carries a large and ever-increasing amount of traffic. As such, it has been the subject of many discussions and initiatives, over the years. Amongst other things, the Parish Council has:
- obtained interactive speed limit signs for each approach to the village centre
- obtained equipment for, and implemented the Parish Speedwatch scheme
- had the line markings, cats eyes and bus stop markings renewed
- installed “gateways” at each end of the village with speed limit road markings
- had speed limit signage reviewed and added to
- pressed for extension of both the 30mph and 40mph limit sections.
Some specific initiatives are outlined below:
For a long time now, Linton Parish Council has been engaged in discussions with Linton residents, with KCC Highways and DHA Planning over how to improve safety when crossing the A229 between the church, and church car park on one side of the road, and the village hall and Bull Inn on the other side.
There is a widely held view that crossing the road at that point is dangerous. However KCC Highways have not been keen to take action, as they say the accident record does not support it. A further difficulty is that the site does not meet Department of Transport guidelines for a light controlled pedestrian crossing as the sight-lines are inadequate. The nearest spot that does meet the requirement is up by the vehicle entrance to the church car park, which would not be used by pedestrians intending to go to the hall or pub. Also, any form of controlled crossing would lead to a large increase in signage and similar “street furniture” which would not be desirable in a historic village centre and conservation area. The road is also not wide enough for a central island.
After much discussion DHA have produced a proposal for improvements, as follows:
- install village gateways (similar to those at Boughton Monchelsea) above and below the village centre, to further encourage traffic to keep to the 30mph limit
- install “pedestrians crossing” signs above and below the village centre
- move the southbound bus stop from its current position in front of the church to a new position above the almshouses. Extend the existing footpath up to it from the top of the almshouses
- install a dropped kerb at the top of the almshouses to encourage pedestrians to cross there
- fill in the bank where the existing southbound bus stop is and grass over, to improve the green
A graphical representation of these improvements is shown below and if that is a bit small for you, you can download it here as a .pdf.
The proposals were exhibited for public viewing as long ago as November 2017 and were favourably received. They have been approved by the Parish Council for implementation, and have been waiting on commencement of the Vicarage Field development before being put in hand.
The Parish Council hopes that work will soon commence.
Various suggestions have been made for improving Linton Crossroads, the junction of the A229 with the B2163. At one time this was the biggest accident black spot south of Maidstone, and accidents and delays are still a frequent occurrence. Considerable sums have been earmarked from a number of different planning s106 approvals, and as part of the application for approval of the Wares Farm Industrial Site, Messrs Alan Firmin Ltd offered some land at the junction as a means of improving the layout. Design work has been undertaken and it is understood that work will commence soon (ie Sept 2019).
The same application offered to improve the junction of the A229 with Redwall Lane and work is expected to commence there soon as well. Completion of this work is a precondition for occupation of the new site.