A Crossing at Perry Vale? (by underpass)



The latter, IMHO.

A “designated safe” pedestrian crossing would not necessarily be safe in practice.

There’s a pedestrian crossing on Honor Oak Park (high st) that has lulled me into a false sense of security on more than one occasion. I came very close to being hit by a car once, and was really shaken.

And that side of Honor Oak Park is a straight road with good visibility for drivers and pedestrians.

Perry Vale is a bend, with poor visibility. A pedestrian crossing might create a false sense of security for pedestrians.


I have long argued that having that table there along with a break in the railings suggests to pedestrians it is a good place to cross. Road designers said they put the table there to slow traffic because people cross there WHERE IT ISN’T SAFE. All they have achieved is encouraging more people to cross there.


While I appreciate peoples desire for the crossing, I don’t think this sort of image sells it. It is just an image of someone crossing with kids in a badly chosen spot. (IMO)

Crossings don’t make roads suddenly safe, it still requires two to tango. However I do appreciate that for some, getting across the road can be time consuming.

That said, you only have to watch peoples behaviour when coming out of the station to realise that most people are far too busy or distracted to wait for a safe time or place.


Very much agree with that, sends the wrong message.


If that image is evidence of how dangerously people cross the road, can someone explain to me what the alternative here is? Correct me if I’m wrong but there is no crossing on Perryvale anywhere near the station (there’s a floating island bit down beyond the Post office depot but that’s it). Perryvale is very busy especially during rush hour, Forest Hill has a huge number of residents who use the station, surely we should be encouraging and supporting safe use of public transport? Since the cars on Perryvale during rush hour tend to sit in queues anyway, how would it be inconveniencing them to have a signal/light-controlled crossing? It would also have the additional benefit of making crossing the road by Waters Fishmonger (which is incredibly difficult because the majority of motorists making the left turn off Perryvale into Waldram Pl do not indicate that they are turning as they should) considerably safer. I think it’s an absolute no-brainer.


As has been discussed a number of times before, it just isn’t as simple as whacking a crossing in there.
I agree there are no formal crossings located near the station, but there is a reason for that, and that is sight lines. They are required to make the crossing as safe as they can be, rather than implying it is a crossing so is automatically safe. If a zebra crossing cannot be seen by approaching motorists, it is pointless, and just encourages people into harms way.

If you watch how people behave at formal and informal crossing points, it varies quite widely. The informal one by the sorting office (Church Vale) causes people to check more than a formal crossing would, before committing to crossing. It is amazing how many people just turn and walk onto a zebra crossing due to the implied safety of it. Same with traffic lights.

There are no crossings on many roads, but people don’t all choose the same blind spot to cross on. This is an issue because both the subway and platform 2 merge at almost the same spot, which instantly becomes the best place to cross. Just stand by a crossing on any road, and watch how many people get tantalisingly close, before just crossing without using the crossing.

I am in complete agreement that the crossing point for Waldram Place is a complete nightmare at the best of times, I hate it for sure. But don’t think a crossing will encourage the numbers that people think it would. Those points in the road will remain “walk out and chance it” kinda road.

I have said it for years, but I WILL do a time lapse of part of the road outside the station around rush hour one evening. You only have to stand there for 10 mins and see 2-3 trains come in and off load to see how carefree some people are about their safety.

Of course we are left with the question of how people cross safely. Which I guess comes down to one simple thing. How many accidents have occurred there annually. A question I have no answer to. Safety and convenience rarely go hand in hand. Certainly not in this case.



I wonder whether the new (obv strictly-observed) 20mph limit makes a difference here.

Personally, I think that with cars travelling within the limit, a crossing outside the station should be possible and safe if everyone is obeying the limit. If the view remains that it isn’t safe since people might be exceeding the limit, why not erect a couple of speed cameras. I find it hard to believe that in the middle of a city, we think we can’t make a safe crossing for pedestrians.


Given the highlighted time of day for this being rush hour, I don’t think that speed is an issue. For the rest of the time, maybe.
A part time crossing could be of use maybe, but again it is all about the location, and if once deemed unsafe, I can’t see that changing.
I am just trying to think of crossings in similar locations to use as an example for the “yes to crossing” side of the argument.

Speed cameras can only be installed with a recorded accident history. Something of which I am keen to know the details of. Last one I recall there was the car hitting the bus stop.
It is one of those things where ideal as it would be to have a crossing there, it is unlikely to happen.


When leaving the station I always cross further up, where the sightlines are better, unless I’m going to the shop. I agree that the layout/furniture provides unintended encouragement to cross by the railings, and there’s also the fact that people instinctively just like to cross the road as early as they can, so most people leaving the station get over very quickly even if they’re walking a long way up Perry Vale.

There is now a proper zebra crossing by St George’s Primary School further up (previously there was just a refuge). But this is some way from the station almost at the Dacres Road junction, so not useful to most people.

I think it’s one of those problems that doesn’t have an easy solution, other than encouraging all road users to take care and be considerate.


Apologies in advance for the long reply, just doing some reading.

Hansard written responses from 19 Jun 2002 Column 426W (Great Britain, 2002b) indicates the cost
of installing the various crossing types. Pelican, Puffin, and Zebra crossing installations were quoted
as costing £24,000, £27,000, and £7,500 respectively. It should also be noted that the full costs,
including design, anti-skid, and traffic management tend to add substantially to these costs.

This is an important piece of information…

The current Google Maps image is also quite fitting.

Other exerts

Pedestrians need adequate gaps in traffic to
cross a road. In relatively low speed urban
environments (up to around 50km/h) a gap of
4‐6 seconds is adequate for most able‐bodied
adult pedestrians to cross a 7m wide two lane
road. Child and elderly pedestrians may have
more difficulty judging speed and safe gaps in
traffic and therefore will require longer gaps.

Visually impaired pedestrians, wheelchair
users and people with walking difficulties will
require longer gaps of around 10‐12 seconds.
The number of safe gaps decreases with the
increase in traffic volume and hence different
forms of crossing are appropriate for different
sites. The availability of safe gaps can be
determined by site survey and compared with
crossing demand.

It should be noted that crossings are an
amenity to aid access and make it easier to
cross a road. The provision of a controlled
crossing will not necessarily reduce collisions
and may even lead to an increase in collisions.
Where a controlled crossing is present some
pedestrians assume that the appearance of
the green man display, or the act of stepping
onto a zebra crossing, gives an assured safe
crossing opportunity and do not keep alert for
approaching vehicles. However some drivers
do not always stop when required to do so
and occasionally pedestrians are injured on
the crossing, or there are nose to tail shunt
accidents on the approaches as drivers brake
suddenly. The provision of good inter‐visibility
between pedestrian and driver.

For anyone truly interested and dedicated to getting to the bottom of this issue, I would recommend a good read of sources 2 and 3 below. Very detailed.

Sources :1 http://content.tfl.gov.uk/shared-zebra-crossing-study.pdf
2 http://www.tii.ie/tii-library/Standards_Related_Materials/15-NRA-Pedestrian-Crossing.pdf
3 http://content.tfl.gov.uk/lcds-chapter5-junctionsandcrossings.pdf


Something needs to be done. It’s very poor crossing there. I’ve done it with a buggy and it felt hairy (perhaps my own poor judgment but I won’t be he first )
It can’t be that hard to sort out …


Yes i’v done it with a buggy too and it is quite tricky. Crossing the South Circular on the other side also takes forever, something I didn’t realise before we moved here. Love everything else about Forest Hill.



I am tempted to write a petition to get a traffic light / pedestrian crossing on the south side entrance of Forest Hill station. If you are heading towards the South Circular or Catford, you need to cross perry vale road or cross Waldram Place (by the new greengrocer) and the traffic can be quite heavy at peak time.

If anyone feel this is relevant please let us know via this post and if you can advise on the best way to go about this, that would be great.




Hi Lionel, I will definitely support the petition if one goes ahead. The crossing opposite the station on Perry Vale and the crossing at the junction of Perry Vale and Waldram Place is very dangerous, cars dont usually give way, some cars driving like mad. There is no safe place to cross and definitely needs the traffic light with the button that pedestrians can push and safely cross. It will irritate the drivers but what else could be done?


Thanks for your support.


When petiotion is ready, we can spend evening or two at the forest hill station, south entrance collecting signatures. Usually there are a lot of people in the evening coming out of the station, summer time is not probably the best time for petitions, the end of September-October is better, plus houses opposite can also sign. I am sure we will have a lot of supporters. Let me know if you need help, i can spend some evenings to collect signatures.


Thanks so much for your support I am going to star the long process by emailing and reporting the problem to Lewisham council. First step is to email: traffic@lewisham.gov.uk

Safety Pedestrian Crossing to access Forest Hill Station - East side (Perry Vale Road)

I am writing to express my concern at the absence of pedestrian crossing near Forest Hill Station - south/East side entrance.

Due to the excess volume of traffic to and from the South circular, it is highly dangerous attempting, as a pedestrian to cross the road (Perry vale) or Waldram Place to access the station especially at peak time.

My concern is I have almost had a near accident due to cars converging on these places when attempting to cross the road… Is there a reason for not having a pedestrian crossing or traffic lights near the station which I would imagine draws most commuters living in Forest Hill and also the shops on Perry Vale.

I feel very strongly about this negligence and realise that my case is not seldom looking at our local blogs and websites.

Thanks for your help and support - have a good weekend


Another thing worth trying, if we find that cars are speeding in this area, @LewishamSTT may be able to organise the next Community Road Watch there.

Road Watch has a calming effect on traffic that lasts weeks (it spooks motorists to see speed limits being enforced by the police!)


Thanks Chris