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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 5:20 am 
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Sussex wrote:
StuartW wrote:
Totally forgot about this - more concerned about proposal to close our main night rank for social distancing purposes, which I doubt will make the headlines :sad:

I despair at officialdom.

The more easier it is to get folks off the streets and back to their homes the less problems society will have with social distancing.

The pavement adjacent to the taxi rank isn't the widest, and during the day it's a shopping street, so they want to get rid of the parking spaces (which is the taxi rank at night) to widen the pavement. The replacement rank would cause all sorts of problems. For a start, the pavement is even narrower (although no shops) and I can just get my front doors open and no more. Pedestrians certainly can't get past while the taxi doors are open.

Anyway, sent this to Licensing, and they've sent it to Transportation, so here's hoping [-o<

Also sent a slightly shorter version of this to the local weekly paper, but not sure if they've published it yet.

----------------------------------------------

I wonder if you could clarify the situation regarding the taxi rank in Bell Street, St Andrews. By chance I came across a press article online saying it would be closed and relocated to Greyfriars Garden for social distancing purposes.

I suspects the benefits of that would be next to negligible in terms of Covid, but would cause numerous problems for the taxi drivers who rely on that rank, particularly as earnings at the moment are paltry, with many of us having to rely on savings and bank loans etc.

The most obvious problem would be lack of space. It's not unusual for 20-30 taxis to be queueing in Bell Street late at night, occupying effectively all of Bell Street and forming an informal feeder rank in South Street towards the West Port.

This is unsatisfactory, but manageable enough because that part of South Street is largely deserted of traffic and pedestrians late on. However, this would not be possible in Greyfriars Garden, because it would effectively cause spillover mayhem onto St Mary's Place, which is often very busy with 'revellers' walking on the road, cyclists careering everywhere, boy racers, blah blah.

Most trips from Bell Street entail passing through the City Road roundabout, so from Greyfriars the detour required by the one-way system would mean an additional quarter of a mile or so, which equates to an average of 58p on Rate 1 fares and 73p on Rate 2, therefore ludicrous in the current climate, particlarly with Fife's already hefty fare levels. This would expose drivers to the additional risk of abuse and threats, and would also encourage customers to jump into a taxi in St Mary's Place to avoid the detour, and this would entail a three-point turn in an often busy area.

Years of experience from the temporary Lammas Fair rank in Greyfriars suggests more customers will get into the back car on the rank, irresepective of the fare issue - not much fun if you're the driver at the front, and you've been waiting on the rank from 1am to 2am, and the last passenger of the night gets into a taxi which has just pulled onto the back of the rank, or has decided just to sit round in St Mary's Place anyway to pre-empt any passing fares. This kind of thing is stressful enough in ordinary times, and has increased in frequency because of the lockdown, and will definitely get worse if the rank is relocated to Greyfriars.

Finally, with fewer parking spaces in the whole locale generally because of the social distancing measure, this would encourage private motorists and the likes of food delivery drivers to park on the taxi rank, creating an obstacle and safety hazard, and exposing drivers to abuse and threats if challenging the illegal parkers.

I would be very surprised if any drivers using the Bell Street rank would be supportive of the plan, and those I've spoken to are utterly opposed, for the reasons described above.

I've drafted a much longer email further detailing the above issues, but will wait for clarification of what's happening in the meantime. Unfortunately I'm not sure who best to contact in Transportation regarding this matter.


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 5:41 am 
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StuartW wrote:
I've drafted a much longer email further detailing the above issues, but will wait for clarification of what's happening in the meantime.

Drafted about 5,000 words :-o of an email last week, but lost the momentum, so can't summon up the effort to get back to it and tidy it off (story of my life, that :roll: ).

Anyway, will wait in the meantime for the council's response.

But this is gives some indication of the pavement at the front of the rank (photo obvious;u taken in daytime, so it's just standard parking spaces:

Image


This is the rank here below. Only half the street is allocated for the rank, but whole street often full of taxis late on, and at weekends is often snaking round the corner into the next street. Not unusual to see 20-30 cars in total at times, for example late Friday in February you'd be lucky to even get straight onto this street without first joining the feeder in the next street ](*,)

Image


This is the proposed location for the replacement rank. You can see how narrow the pavement is:

Image


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PostPosted: Tue Sep 29, 2020 6:02 am 
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Location: Stamford Britains prettiest town till SKDC ruined it
here's hoping your council isn't like ours and many others where the decision is finalised and the "public consultation" is a sop!

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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2020 7:09 pm 
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I woud suggest delivering letters to the residents of the proposed street of a new rank being created
outside their door . I would also encourage them to complain to the council about the potential enviroment
impact it would have on their lives , especially at night.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 30, 2020 8:07 pm 
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youbeenbusy wrote:
I woud suggest delivering letters to the residents of the proposed street of a new rank being created
outside their door . I would also encourage them to complain to the council about the potential enviroment
impact it would have on their lives , especially at night.

Good idea dat.

Certainly one of the most expensive streets in the town, but I think it's mostly students there, who might not be bothered so much about that sort of thing.

And although it's certainly a lot quieter than where the current rank is, in truth it's not really that far away - if the normal queue of cars at the current rank were sitting on the new rank, they'd be tailing back about as far as the allocated part of current rank :-s

So that kind of demonstrates why the new rank wouldn't work, because the cars at the back would be where the current rank is :roll: Not precisely, though - they'd actually be snaking past the Vic pub/club on the corner and towards the students union, which is why it wouldn't work - lots of nights the vast majority of fares coming from those two.

Except it would be great for the office cars, because they tend to be sitting at the rear of the rank, so I could see them coming back from an office job, grabbing a fare from the back, then back on the rank with the likes of yours truly sitting up at the front tearing my hair out having already waited maybe over an hour :evil: And maybe at the end of the night end up not getting a job at all as a consequence :cry:

Anyway, we'll see what happens. I'm not normally very proactive about these things, because from past experience I'm worried getting involved might misfire and make things worse, so I tend to just let sleeping dogs lie. But this seemed more of an emergency, so assumed there wasn't any real downside to trying to stop it.

But one day I'll go to town on stuff like this. Maybe next time I win the Euromillions :roll:


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2020 6:02 am 
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Location: Stamford Britains prettiest town till SKDC ruined it
Quote:
Maybe next time I win the Euromillions :roll:


Oh look a sky full of flying pigs! :lol: :lol: :lol:

I suspect you're like me you never win nowt!

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2020 10:00 am 
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edders23 wrote:
I suspect you're like me you never win nowt!

About a month ago I won £2.30, I'll have you know :roll:

Not quite enough to retire on, though. In fact not quite enough to cover the cost of the ticket :cry:


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 01, 2020 7:28 pm 
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Location: Stamford Britains prettiest town till SKDC ruined it
I estimate I win £2.30 about every 30 plays :sad:

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:06 pm 
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Still not clear what's happening with this - in response to my email last week, licensing said that we'd be told what was happening before anything was actually done.

But these signs went up on the rank/parking spaces on Friday (and they're all over the town - photo is from another street), so taking these signs at face value it should all be blocked off by now :cry:

Image



There's a piece in the Courier this morning about how all the local shops and businesses are up in arms about it:

Almost 60 St Andrews businesses warn of devastation as parking is removed from town centre

Image

https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/lo ... wn-centre/



In a nutshell, though, best comment on it all in a piece at the weekend quoting the community council in the village of Crail:

The Courier wrote:
David Jerdan, community council chairman, says the measures are being introduced without consultation with community representatives or local tradespeople.

“Parking is already very difficult in Crail, and the partial implementation of this plan has already resulted in restricted traffic movement (hindering bus movements, for example, and farm traffic) – this will only get worse.

“In addition, there is real concern amongst local tradespeople that this initiative will materially affect their businesses, and will present major problems for delivery vehicles that will further add to traffic problems.

“There appears to be no consideration for disabled parking or access and the partial implantation of the plan on St Andrews Road takes no account of pedestrian flow or traffic flow, and serves no purpose.

“The community council believe this to be a very ill-considered initiative that will not improve public safety by increasing the capacity for effective social distancing but may in fact increase traffic problems and raise road safety issues.”


https://www.thecourier.co.uk/fp/news/lo ... e-changes/

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 6:45 pm 
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Well the rank's still here :)

Don't know if they're just behind schedule with the program, or if it's on hold, or what :?

Of course, no official word from the council yet, and other drivers even more clueless than me :roll:

And pity the sign is causing a hazard on the rank, taking up a whole space, not to mention the usual parking meter, which is a permanent headache ](*,)

Image

Tonight's moral dilemma - should I move the sign onto the pavement...maybe one of the other drivers will do it.

It was certainly moved onto the pavement at the weekend, but it's back on the road now :-s


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2020 7:00 pm 
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Never tried the Imgur site before, but seems quite easy to host photos - you don't even need to register =D>

Only thing to watch is that if you're using it to display something on here then the photo has to be a reasonable size - width 600 to 800 is about right, I'd say - the photo above is 800 pixels wide.

But you can't just upload a photo straight from your phone to Imgur, because although it'll look OK on Imgur, back on here the width will be several thousand pixels, and so it'll be HUGE.

https://imgur.com

Just click on the 'New Post' button to top left of screen.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 2:38 pm 
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A couple more photos :-o

First I took a couple of years ago, and this shows the *feeder* part of the rank in the next street.

There's ten cars in this photo, and if the street round the corner with the official rank is full of taxis (by this time of night the street with the official rank is often empty of private cars) that would be almost 20, so in total about 30 taxis.

There's a few gaps in the photo above, but on occasion I've seen a solid queue, and a bit further back than this, so pushing 40 taxis altogether :shock:

Officially, there's rank space allocated for 10 cars :sad:

The replacement rank would be about 10 cars, I'm assuming, but no real scope for a feeder area, and as far as many customers are concerned, the car at the back of the rank would become the front car :evil:

To be fair, not so many taxis around since lockdown started to be lifted, and haven't actually seen much queuing into this street. But certainly seen thick end of 20 cars in the official rank street, so replacement rank would be totally inadequate space-wise.

Image


Took this one a few days ago to show the lack of space where the replacement rank would be. So much for social distancing [-(

Image


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 06, 2020 3:55 pm 
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It looks as if your council is like ours take a decision finalise it and then do a token public consultation to make it look as if they consulted first! :sad: :twisted:

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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 1:11 am 
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StuartW wrote:
Anyway, we'll see what happens. I'm not normally very proactive about these things, because from past experience I'm worried getting involved might misfire and make things worse, so I tend to just let sleeping dogs lie. But this seemed more of an emergency, so assumed there wasn't any real downside to trying to stop it.

Well I was right and wrong.

I was right in guessing that getting involved might misfire.

Wrong in thinking that in this case there was no downside in trying to stop it.

It's misfired and there is a downside, because they've closed the rank anyway, and there's no replacement :cry:

And not a peep from the council. There's a loading bay been left and there's space for three cars, but I don't think that's been left for the benefit of the trade, so who knows.

But because they've closed the pubs and restaurants more or less completely (as per Sussex's thread) don't know if there's any point ranking up at night anyway. Took over three hours to get my first run on Monday. Made £11 in total :cry:

Will all certainly help with social distancing, though. As you can see, at 6.00pm the pavements are still thronging with people.

(Photos are videograbs - had my phone sitting on the dash as a dashcam. Wasn't stopping to take photos.)

Image

Image

Image


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 08, 2020 8:46 am 
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"Spaces for people Programme"....geeze they do like a trendy catchphrase when in reality people have survived just fine for over a hundred years with the space they already had, have'nt these supposedly cash strapped councils anything better to do with their (your) money than b*gger about widening pavements on narrow roads just to appease a few radical protesters that put idealogy before practicality.

So, they get a wider pavement and it makes not a jot of difference, money that could have been spent more creatively and productively to really help their community and it's economy has been squandered by councillors who have nothing better to do...the Signs on the street say it clearly.."To Let, To let"...their towns economy needs help not hindered.


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