With the Olympic Torch Relay coming to Bloxwich,Walsall and Willenhall this Saturday 30th June, it is inevitable that some roads will have to be closed, but WalsallCouncil are doing their best to minimise any inconvenience to road users and residents by operating a ‘rolling closure’ scheme along the relay route within the borough. Sections of the route will be closed for around 30 minutes at a time. That is the expected minimum.
EMERGENCY ACCESS – NO NEARSIDE PARKING
Particularly important points to note are that access will be available to emergency (blue light) vehicles at all times, but that there will be strictly no nearside parking along the route, the latter being a requirement of West Midlands Police.
Drivers are warned that as a last resort, the Council may have to move vehicles left parked on the route, but with everyone’s help and co-operation for this once-in-a-lifetime event, this will not be necessary.
The Council has been working with public transport providers to minimise disruption. Some bus services will be temporarily suspended and others will use diversions where possible. More information is available on the Network West Midlands website via this link.
THE TORCH RELAY CONVOY
The Torch Relay operates as a convoy of vehicles surrounding the actual torch bearer. There are two elements to the convoy. First is the activation convoy. This is made up of the Olympic sponsors’ vehicles. The activation convoy tries to be 15 minutes ahead of the torchbearer element of the convoy.
Walsall Council will be using Twitter, Facebook and the dedicated website www.walsallfor2012.co.uk to give updates on the progress of the Torch Relay on the day. You can follow this via @walsallfor2012 on Twitter, where Council staff and others will be using the hashtag #day43
ROAD CLOSURE DETAILS
Walsall Council are aiming to close the route 10 minutes ahead of the activation convoy. Times given are approximate. The activation convoy could end up being 30 minutes ahead of the torchbearer for example. Also, the convoy may have lost time and be running late.
In effect, two sections of the route will be closed at a time. As the torch enters the first section, the third section will be closed, and so on. The aim is also to keep a cross movement of traffic at major junctions going for as long as possible.
ROAD CLOSURES IN STAFFORDSHIRE – A5 to A34
Staffordshire County Council is implementing a 3 hour closure of the A34 (Stafford Road/WalsallRoad) from the A5 at Churchbridge to the junction with Turnberry Road, Bloxwich. This closure will be in operation from10.00am to 1.00pm. Traffic from Bloxwich will not be able to get to Great Wyrley and Cannockon the A34 at this time. It will get as far asTurnberry Road then have no option but to turn left into Turnberry Road.
BLOXWICH ROAD CLOSURES
The A34 Stafford Road and High Street Bloxwich from Turnberry Road to Elmore Green Road will be closing at around 11.30am. The Torch is expected to enter the borough via Bloxwich at 11.58am and leave High Street Bloxwich around 12.20pm, at which point it will enter Somerfield Road (A34).
THE TORCH WILL NOT PASS THROUGH CENTRAL LEAMORE ON THE B4210 BLOXWICH ROAD
Somerfield Road, Bloxwich, from High Street to Leamore Lane, will be closing at around11.50am. This is the only stretch of the route where the torch will be visible in Leamore, up to where the Four Crosses used to be.
NOTHING TO SEE IN GREEN LANE TILL RAYBOULDS BRIDGE ROAD
From Leamore Lane junction the Torch goes into convoy mode (with no torch bearer visible, so no point waiting along this stretch) and continues on the A34 (Green Lane).
The Convoy will be back in torch bearer mode on Green Lane near to the junction with Rayboulds Bridge Road at around 12.30pm. This road will be closed at around 12.00 noon with Courtway, Littleton Street West and Littleton Street East closing shortly after that.
THE TORCH ENTERS WALSALL
Lichfield Street, Walsall will be closed from the Arboretum junction to Bridge Street from 12.00 noon to 2pm.
Bridge Street (known as Lower Bridge Street) will be closed at 1.30pm. The Bridge, Park Street and Gallery Square don’t need to be closed as they are pedestrianised. However, a barriered route will be laid out on these roads for the Torch bearer. Gaps in the barriers will be closed at around1.30pm. Taxi bays and disabled parking bays will be suspended for the day inBridge Street.
VEHICLES VIA ST PAUL’S STREET AND TOWN END
The main convoy (the vehicles) doesn’t go up Park Street. Instead it uses St Paul’s Street and Townend to re-join the Torch bearer at Wolverhampton Street.
Wolverhampton Street will be closed at around 1.25pm, with Wolverhampton Road up to the junction with Primley Avenue being closed shortly afterwards.
THE WILLENHALL LEG
The torch crosses junction 10 M6 in convoy mode and starts in torch bearer mode again on Wolverhampton Road West near the junction with Bentley Road North at around 2.10pm.
Closures on Wolverhampton Road West will start at around 1.40pm with the section of Crescent Road (where McDonalds is) and then Walsall Road and Walsall Street being closed at around 1.50pm.
New Road and Somerford Place will be closed at around 2pm. There will be no exit from The Keyway at Portobello roundabout for a period of time as the convoy passes over into Wolverhampton.
For further information about the Torch Relay and associated activities in Walsall Metropolitan Borough, including a map, see the dedicated Walsall for 2012 website.
For other related news items and Bloxwich-related details check out our Olympic Games category via this link.
Published with special thanks to Kate Goodall of WalsallCouncil for detailed information.