On Monday 8th October Croydon’s Labour-run Council announced that Blackhorse Lane Bridge will not open until 2020 at the earliest – two full years later than planned.
The closure of the bridge has put untold strain on local businesses and caused misery for residents across Addiscombe and South Norwood.
Led by local Conservative councillor Jeet Bains, nearly 700 local residents have signed a letter demanding that Mayor Sadiq Khan acts to speed up the opening of this vital piece of community infrastructure:
“Dear Mayor Khan,
We are writing as a group of concerned residents living in the Addiscombe and Woodside area of the London Borough of Croydon. On Monday 8th October we were informed by Transport for London that the much used Blackhorse Lane Bridge would not be opening until 2020. This is completely unacceptable.
Blackhorse Lane Bridge has been closed to vehicles since August 2016, when safety concerns were raised over its corroding structure. It was initially due to be completed by November 2018, but in May 2017 we learned it was delayed until January 2019.
Blackhorse Lane Bridge is a vital connection point between the areas of Addiscombe and Woodside, the closure has caused a significant increase in traffic congestion in key pinch points meaning often an additional 40 minutes is added to local journey times.
It has made living in the area intolerable, and added an impossible strain on local businesses - irreparably damaging our once thriving high street community.
The news that the Bridge will now not open until 2020 is not acceptable. As the Mayor of London and Chair of Transport for London, we demand action immediately to expedite the repairs and alleviate the strain on our community.”
One resident has summed up the issue perfectly, commenting: ‘It’s a disgrace and actually has stopped me shopping in this great area. I drive all over London in the heavy traffic - but it moves - if you try to go along Portland Road and down by Ashburton Park - you are almost crying with frustration sometimes. During the school run times the journey takes even longer. You have the option to go via Woodside and down to the Cherry Orchard roundabout and then back up through Addiscombe. If all you want is a small shop then it’s not worth the effort. It’s actually quicker to go from South Norwood up to Crystal Palace or West Norwood to shop - thus depriving local traders of custom. Total disgrace.’
Businesses across Addiscombe have been displaying posters in frustration at the news, residents are welcome to download the poster for themselves and put them in their windows. You can download the poster online.
On behalf of local residents, Conservative Assembly Member Steve O’Connell will push Mayor Sadiq in City Hall tomorrow to take urgent action to repair and open the bridge as fast as possible.