Agenda and minutes

Joint Transportation Board - Tuesday 6 June 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Room B12, Civic Centre, Home Gardens, Dartford, Kent, DA1 1DR

Contact: Email: 

No. Item


Apologies for Absence.


There were no apologies for absence.


Declarations of Interest

To receive declarations of interest from Members including the terms(s) of the Grant of Dispensation (if any).


There were no declarations of interest.


Confirmation of Chairman (DBC) and Election of Vice-Chairman (KCC) for the Ensuing 2023-24 Municipal Year


Following confirmation of his appointment as Chairman of the Dartford Joint Transportation Board at Annual Council on 24 May 2023 for the ensuing municipal cycle, Councillor Brian Garden invited KCC Members present to nominate one of their Group as Vice-Chairman.


Cllr. Mrs Penny Cole, KCC was duly nominated and seconded, and in the absence of any other nominations, duly elected Vice-Chairman of the Board for the ensuing 2023-24 municipal cycle. 


Election/Confirmation of Parish Representatives

To be advised.


The Chairman advised that nominations from the Parish Councils had exceeded the maximum number of vacancies (two) for Parish Reps. on the Board, and that the Parish selection process remained ongoing.


The competing candidates had been asked [via their Parish Clerks], to provide a written statement in support their applications. Once completed, the statements would be circulated [simultaneously] round the Parish Councils for them to vote on their final 2 selections. It was hoped to complete that process for the two successful candidates to be appointed by the Board at its next meeting in September. 


To confirm the Minutes of the meeting of the Dartford Joint Transportation Board held on 7 March 2023 pdf icon PDF 199 KB




That the minutes of the meeting of the Joint Transportation Board held on 7 March 2023 be confirmed as an accurate record.


Matters Arising


The Vice-Chairman advised Members that she had attended the proposed site meeting with KCC officers at Ronan’s View to consider the double-height kerb issue amid safety concerns from residents, but awaited the outcome of her meeting with KCC Officers [Min. No. 50 Members Enquiry Items - third bullet point refers] .


Kevin Gore (KCC District Manager) undertook to chase up a response from his colleagues.



Urgent Items

The Chairman will announce his decision as to whether there are any urgent items and their position on the agenda.


The Chairman confirmed that there were no urgent items for Members to consider.


References from other Committees (if any)


The Clerk confirmed that there were no references from other Committees for the Board to consider.


Chairman's Update


The Chairman advised that he would update Members as appropriate, during the discussions of a very full agenda.



KCC Roads Update pdf icon PDF 230 KB

To receive an update from the KCC Area Manager for Dartford & Gravesham.


The KCC Highways Manager for Dartford responded to Members questions concerning road works in the Borough as set out in the KCC Highways Forward Works Programme: 2022-23 and 2023/24 report and Appendices dated 6 June 2023 [Agenda Item 16 originally marked as ‘To-Follow’].


The KCC Member for Swanscombe & Greenhithe asked for an update on the closure of Galley Hill Road, Swanscombe, following the ground movements and collapses in the adjacent chalk quarry. All through traffic from Dartford to Northfleet and beyond was now diverted down Swanscombe High Street causing major disruption and inconvenience to residents, especially from heavy lorry traffic.


The Dartford Highways Manager advised that the quarry site had been a Thames Water responsibility until mid-May following the quarry collapse, but that KCC had now taken over responsibility for the quarry area and surrounding roads.


KCC had implemented appropriate road diversions and posted warning signage against use by HGV vehicles in excess of 7.5 tonnes in the surrounding area. KCC had commissioned a chalk survey of the quarry, prior to consideration of any repair works. He warned that there was no ‘quick fix’- the survey and consideration of any recommendations by KCC would take at least 3 months, with repair work implemented thereafter, and based on the survey’s recommendations. He confirmed that pending the outcome of the survey, only critical road works would be undertaken in the surrounding area, to minimise any further disruption for residents.


KCC would update the Town Council, residents and the Borough authority of progress as it occurred.


The Highways Manager undertook to respond to a variety of questions from individual Members regarding; Priory Road South, Footway Protection in Acacia and Elm Roads in Stone [not Greenhithe], and Bob Dunn Way – flooding issues near Marsh St. [report Appendices A and B refer], following the meeting, once he had secured updates from his relevant colleagues dealing with those works.


Arriva Services & Fastrack Update

To receive a PowerPoint presentation from the KCC Transport Manager.


The Board received a verbal update from KCC’s Fastrack Development Manager (FDM), Shane Hymers, in lieu of his planned PowerPoint presentation, given that the contract arrangements remained subject to embargo, under KCC’s contractual arrangements with the new Fastrack service supplier.


However, Mr Hymers was able to provide Members with the following key details, further to his last verbal update to the Board in March [Min. No. 48 refers]:


·         The new Fastrack Electric contract had been awarded to Go-Ahead London, who would start operations from its Bexleyheath depot from November 2024, with a new Kent depot to be confirmed;

·         Fastrack had recorded its highest monthly patronage in March 2023 despite the re-routing of the B service, following the closure of Galley Hill Road in Swanscombe, due to subsidence at the nearby quarry and the consequent passenger loss to the 480/490 services.


In response to a series of subsequent questions and expressions of concern from Members, the FDM confirmed the following points, or undertook to contact them direct with the answer(s):


·         Arriva had been made aware of the need to improve performance on their 480, 490 and 483 services, and they had improved in recent weeks;

·         Fastrack B service was currently re-directed via the A2 to lessen the burden on residential roads already subjected to re-directed 480/490services;

·         Drivers were not authorised to divert the 483 on an ad-hoc journey basis to Castle Hill, if they perceived a lack of through passengers for Swanscombe on any given journey. If Members [and residents] could provide the FDM with specific details [to help identify given drivers], the FDM would progress the complaint with Arriva;

·         Under new Government legislation, the new electrified Fastrack bus fleet would be able to accommodate 2 (two) wheelchair passengers. The present service fleet could only accommodate 1 (one) wheelchair passenger with the required headrest safety measure;

·         The first tranche of APNR cameras would be installed on William Mundy Way in August/September 2023. The developer has to resurface the Fastrack lane, once that was done “Bus Only” signage would be painted;

·         The installation of ANPR cameras and the re-painting of a Yellow Box Junction on the Blue Star Roundabout was due to be completed in August/September 2023;

·         The FDM undertook to relay to KCC/Highways England the Chairman’s concerns that drivers ‘caught’ in the box junction under the new fining regime, would have their offences intelligently interpreted i.e. when exit was blocked by non-compliant traffic.


In response to further specific concerns from the Chairman, regarding the likelihood of Arriva continuing its other non-Fastrack services in the Dartford area [given that Fastrack comprised some 50% of Arriva’s current operation], the FDM confirmed that Arriva was currently committed to a Fastrack service until November 2023, under the current rolling arrangements, and was yet to serve a formal exit notice.


KCC continued to talk to Arriva over an extension to those current rolling arrangements, to fill the gap until the new electrified service from Go-Ahead London came on stream. It was possible that Go  ...  view the full minutes text for item 11.


Update on Town Centre Works

To receive a verbal update from the Council’s Head of Planning Services.


The Board received a short verbal update from the Council’s Head of Planning Services, Sonia Collins, in advance of her full report to Cabinet in July 2023.


The Head of Planning Services explained for the benefit of new Members, that the Dartford Town Centre Regeneration project was a phased programme of transport related improvements, including signal improvements, bus stop rationalisation and cycle and pedestrian route improvements, all of which are to be delivered in a way which creates a high quality public realm. It is funded by government grant funding and contributions from developments granted planning permission in the area.


She gave the following details of work to date:


·         Phase 1 - Market Street into Lowfield Street now largely completed:  a new bus shelter on Lowfield Street is awaited;

·         Phase 2A - Instone Road/Lowfield Street junction improvements under way. The subway has been filled and will be replaced with 3 pedestrian signalised crossings at the junction. The corner adjacent to the junction will be landscaped and repaved. Overnight road closure will be necessary in October 2023 to do the final road surfacing.


It was noted that the closure of Lowfield Street would also be required due to service installation to serve new developments either side of Lowfield Street. This was not part of the DTCR project, but the Dartford project team was working to co-ordinate these closures and minimise disruption.


·         High Street works were being completed, with the new lighting now to be installed on columns.


·         Phase 3 - Hythe Street improvements have been designed but the aim is to co-ordinate delivery with the adjacent development site.


·         Phase 3A - Spital Street design is to be reported to Cabinet. If agreed this will be consulted on. It is expected works will start early 2024.


·         Phase 2B - West Hill junction and bus stop replacement is to come forward with phase 3A.


·         Phase 4 - Westgate Road, Hythe Street, Home gardens junction is in the initial assessment stages with update traffic modelling being undertaken to inform the design.


Members thanked the Head of Planning Services for updating the Board prior to her full report to Cabinet the following month.


South East Trains Service - New Timetable for Woolwich Line

To discuss and make representations as appropriate, in the absence of SE Trains representatives.


The Chairman advised that SE Trains had declined to attend and update the Board that evening, citing pressure of work to combat the continuing strike action, but had undertaken to update the Board at its next meeting on 19 September.


Continuing concerns noted by Members included:


·       The Woolwich line now appeared to operate at a 30 minute interval with trains operating in pairs approximately 4 minutes apart;

·       Passengers departing London faced a 23 minute wait on transfer at Woolwich;

·       Rolling stock continued to be dirty with insufficient available toilet capacity;

·       Trains now stopped at Lewisham for a driver break causing further delays to an already poor service;

·       SE Trains vaunted 3 inter-connected train lines, to provide a better overall service and produce ‘cover’ between the separate lines was clearly not working.


It was proposed that the three Dartford political Group Leaders and the Chairman of the JTB write jointly to SE Trains, in advance of the company’s appearance before the Board in September, to voice Members’ continuing concerns and those of residents.


The Principal Transport Planner advised that, unless the proposed letter was accompanied by detailed data citing specific delays on identified dates, SE Trains would not be able to provide an adequate response. A survey of passengers was needed to secure anecdotal evidence, perhaps via ‘Dartford Together’.


It was agreed that the Chairman and the Leader of the Council would consider the proposal to write formally to SE Trains further, and to include responses from the public in that letter, for response from SE Trains prior to September.


Lower Thames Crossing Update

To receive a verbal update from the Council’s Principal Transport Planner (PTP).


The Board received a verbal update from the Principal Transport Planner, DBC Planning Services which included the following principal points:


He reminded Members of the background to the Lower Thames Crossing (LTC) Scheme. Dartford Borough Council had maintained strong support for the scheme since February 2016, for the proposed option for a new road crossing of the River Thames linking Kent (A2/M2) to Essex through Thurrock (A13).


The Council continued to engage with Kent County Council (KCC) and other relevant district authorities on issues of common ground, and on modelling issues during construction and operation. In particular, to look at the Crossing’s potential traffic impacts and proposed mitigations for strategic road networks across Kent.


The Council and KCC had requested air quality monitoring at relevant locations in Kent including Junctions 1A and 1B and awaited a response from National Highways (NH), who currently proposed traffic flow monitoring one year prior to scheme opening, and one year and five years after scheme opening. Monitoring is currently not identified before and during construction period.


The revised Development Consent Order application for LTC was submitted in October 2022 and accepted by the Planning Inspectorate in November 2022. The Examining Authority (Ex A), had subsequently issued a Rule 6 letter on 25th April 2023, relating to the Preliminary Meeting and Notifications of Hearing. The Council was amongst those authorities/organisations that had submitted Relevant Representations (RRs) as an Interested Party (IPs), and had submitted their RR on 24 February 2023.


The Council’s RR submission had reiterated DBC’s support for the Project, but requested closer engagement with NH/KCC on construction and scheme monitoring on traffic flow and air quality, especially at the Dartford Tunnel crossing approach & A282 corridor, both of which were key areas for the Council. The Ex A had invited IPs to three meetings to discuss procedural and timing issues, prior to the start to the Examination.


The Programming Meeting held virtually on 16th May 2023, had invited participants to give their views about arrangements they needed to make to participate in the Examination, their preparation of a Local Impact Report and resourcing/timing considerations.


Preliminary Meeting Part 1 had been held that morning [6 June] at the London Stadium Stratford both in person and via Teams to discuss; the Examination process, timetable, the Examining Authority’s (Ex A’s) remarks about written submissions and principal issues. The Government was unlikely to accelerate any other projects to alleviate the traffic congestion in Dartford and the surrounding areas, until the flagship LTC Scheme was agreed.

Preliminary Meeting Part 2 was to be held virtually on 20th June 2023 to discuss the Ex A’s remarks on written submissions and any procedural representations.


A Rule 8 statutory letter will be issued after the Preliminary meetings, setting out the finalised time-table for the Examination. A further Open Floor / Issue Specific Hearing, was to be held between 20th June and 5th July 2023.


Local Impact Report (LIR): a deadline of 18 July 2023 has been set for the Ex A to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 14.


Parking Schemes Update

Verbal update from the Council’s PTP.


Members received a short verbal update from the Principal Transport Planner, DBC Planning Services, which included the following principal points regarding progress since his last update to the Board in March 2023 [Min. No. 52 refers]:


DTC Parking Study - West Hill / Town Wards area - Sub Zone 1


Following the last update on the progress of the above study, officers have now commissioned a consultant to undertake a Stage 2 study which would involve a technical review and an outline concept design, based on the feedback received from local residents and businesses in the 29 streets within sub-zone 1 and the parking beat survey undertaken in September 2022. The study would take four to five weeks to complete, with the outcome of the Stage 2 study reported to Cabinet between July and September 2023.


Members noted that the scheme was progressing to a concept design, and asked that the issue of short-term parking around Dartford railway station be included.


The outcome of the informal public consultations for the Newtown and Town wards area will also be reported to Cabinet between July and September 2023.


Anne of Cleves Road – The proposed scheme was still undergoing the statutory consultation process, with a proposal that all bays be amended to permit parking, operational Monday to Friday 9.30 a.m. to 4.30 p.m. For the benefit of new Members, it was explained that half of Anne of Cleves Rd. was permit holder parking [which attracted a fee], and half was free i.e. residents with parking permits were fiscally disadvantaged.


Other points of note were:


·         Foxwood Road / Beacon Drive – Proposal to introduce double yellow lines at junction (at the request of the local Ward Councillor remained subject to the ongoing statutory consultation process;

·         Lingfield Avenue Way / Fairway Drive – introduction of double yellow lines at junction at request of Ward Councillor;

·         Warwick Way off Hawley Road – introduction of double yellow lines at junction at request of Ward Councillor


The Chairman thanked the Principal Transport Planner for updating the Board on the progress made to date, and asked him to reconsider the previous Member request, that he update Ward Councillors [perhaps via a round-robin email], of progress being made between Board meetings, to help allay ongoing resident concerns on key long-standing issues.



Members Enquiry Items

Members have the opportunity to raise matters in their Ward that remain unresolved with KCC for more than 3 months.



This was taken under Item 9 – KCC Roads Update [Min. No. 9 refers].


Councillors Penny Cole, Kelly Grehan and Mrs. Julie Ozog re-iterated their requests for feed-back direct from the KCC Highways Manager off-line on the issues they had raised. Cllr. Grehan asked for additional feed-back concerning progress on the line-painting outside Temple Hill school.


The Highways Manager undertook to report back direct to the Members as requested.


Road Works in the Borough of Dartford pdf icon PDF 27 KB

Members will be advised of the roadworks which were currently being undertaken or expected within the Borough.


This Item is currently marked as ‘To-Follow’.



Item 9 and Min. No. 9 refer.


KCC - Environment & Transport Committee Highways and Waste pdf icon PDF 165 KB

The following documents have been attached for Members information: -


·         KCC Environment, Highways and Waste Cabinet Committee Minutes of; 8 November 2022, 19 January 2023 and 7 March 2023.




NB: If a Member wishes to discuss any of these items at the meeting, please advise the Member Services Section (01322) 343251 prior to the meeting.

Additional documents:




That the Board notes the contents of the minutes for the KCC Environment & Transport Cabinet Committee meetings held on 19 January and 7 March 2023.