Scrutinising the Mayor articles

Mayor's Question Time - September 2009

Caroline's questions for Boris Johnson in September's Mayor's Question Time session have now been published on the web.

Caroline raised a range of issues, including:

  • Prospects of building a ferry pier near Vauxhall station
  • The need for a website for transport users to report problems with graffiti, litter and vandalism
  • Press reports that TfL is no longer pursuing foreign embassies which fail to pay the Congestion Charge
  • The lack of proper provision for cyclists while the Greenwich Foot Tunnel is closed

Mayor must review the licensing of cab drivers

An independent and wide ranging review of the licensing of cab drivers is now necessary following the recent reports of an individual convicted of manslaughter applying to become a taxi driver and having already received a private hire driver’s licence, says Caroline Pidgeon, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Transport Spokesperson.

The London Assembly Member, who chairs the London Assembly Transport Committee, has now written to Boris Johnson urging him to ensure that changes are made to the proposed review being undertaken by the Public Carriage Office (PCO).

Transport campaigns in Forest Hill

On Friday 4th September Caroline visited Forest Hill with local Lib Dem Councillors John Russell and Alex Feakes to look at a number of transport issues.

Talking to local residents and members of the Forest Hill Society, Caroline heard about several key transport issues, several of which Caroline has tabled questions to the Mayor about:

1. The proposed reduction in train services from Forest Hill at peak times and in evenings and weekends to Charing Cross;

2. The dangerous junction of Forest Hill Road and Sydenham Rise;

3. The virtually invisible bus stops on Sydenham Rise due to overgrown trees, bushes and no dedicated bus space to pull in by the kerb; and

4. Issues of visitor traffic around the Horniman Museum, congesting local streets.

Graffiti problems at St John's station

Caroline visited St John’s station in Lewisham to witness the huge amount of graffiti that appears all over the station and on surrounding walls.

“There needs to be a simple way to report such graffiti and other environmental nuisance at stations and other transport areas as there are so many train companies and public bodies involved it is difficult to work out who is responsible. I have called on the Mayor of London to look at introducing such a website or web pages” commented Caroline. (See Caroline's question to Boris Johnson here.)

Boris must stop dithering on fares

At today's Mayor's Question Time, Caroline Pidgeon, the Liberal Democrat London Assembly Transport Spokesperson, criticised Boris Johnson's repeated evasiveness in answering questions about 2010 transport fares in 2010, saying:

"This time last year the Mayor had already told Londoners what the fares package would be for 2009. Now a year later the Mayor seems incapable of even saying when a decision will be announced for fares in 2010. Why is the Mayor dithering on fares?

Lib Dems highlight risks to public as bus CCTV footage is destroyed

Simon Hughes, Liberal Democrat MP for North Southwark and Bermondsey, and Caroline Pidgeon, Liberal Democrat London Assembly Member, have been alarmed to discover that CCTV footage on buses is only kept for one week. After being contacted by a constituent who was allegedly assaulted by a driver on a 42 bus, Simon was shocked to discover the Transport for London and East Thames Buses had no record of the incident because CCTV footage had been destroyed.

Mayor's Question Time for July

July's Mayor's Questions saw Caroline raise a number of issues:

  • The extension of the number 63 bus route to Honor Oak Park Station, to link in with the East London Line Extension which will open next year
  • Information on the West London Line
  • Road works at Richmond Circus
  • Philosophy on the Underground
  • Planning closures of the London Overground service between Gospel Oak and Stratford
  • Issues between EDF and TfL about removing redundant lamp post columns

Caroline urges Mayor to deliver a 24/7 Freedom Pass

The Mayorwatch website covers the restrictions that prevent London pensioners using their Freedom Passes on overground rail services at peak times.

Caroline is quoted saying that “[many pensioners] believe the promise made by Boris Johnson for 24 hour use of the Freedom Pass applied to all public transport in their area. Clearly this has not been the case and at present many pensioners in London are getting a rotten deal.”

Caroline Pidgeon challenges Mayor over Jubilee line disruption

Caroline Pidgeon has tabled a question to Boris Johnson to ask why, during the engineering work disrupting the Jubilee line this summer, replacement buses from Canada Water are being directed to Bank rather than along the line's normal route to Waterloo.

"It seems extraordinary that TfL decide on where to route rail replacement buses without, it would appear, consulting the local community," says Caroline.

TfL paints double red lines on road by mistake

The Hounslow Chronicle covers the story of the double red lines painted by mistake on Lower Mortlake Road in Richmond, and the efforts of Susan Kramer MP and Caroline Pidgeon AM in having them removed.

Caroline tabled a question on the issue to Boris Johnson, who admitted: "An error was made, resulting in TfL’s contractors installing double red lines in advance of a decision being made on the necessary traffic orders. ... Any red lines introduced prematurely and without a valid traffic order will not be enforced."

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