Repeal statutory undertaker rights to dig holes

When gas, electric, water and phones were privatised, they took with them in to the private sector almost unlimited powers to dig holes for repair, replacement and laying infrastructure. These powers were – perhaps – tolerable when the company was under ultimate ministerial control. But now these powers are massively abused in the pursuit of profit. Utilities routinely:

  • dig up pavements and paving in pedestrian areas, and instead of making good on a like for like basis, they cover the hole in tarmac, which soon settles and puddles. As Council's have a got a grip of the quality of the public realm, millions of pounds worth of damage to good modern – often decorative – paving is inflicted by these companies, leaving us with uneven and patchwork walking environments
  • dig up roads without coordinating with other utilities, so that the same road can be dug up successively, causing disruption and traffic delays
  • fail to make rapid progress with works, also causing traffic delays in roads, and unsightly and often unsafe conditions on pavements

It's time these powers were removed, and they were forced to book their work with the council,  pay for the chaos they cause (including delays to drivers and passengers), and reinstate like for like.

Why is this idea important?

When gas, electric, water and phones were privatised, they took with them in to the private sector almost unlimited powers to dig holes for repair, replacement and laying infrastructure. These powers were – perhaps – tolerable when the company was under ultimate ministerial control. But now these powers are massively abused in the pursuit of profit. Utilities routinely:

  • dig up pavements and paving in pedestrian areas, and instead of making good on a like for like basis, they cover the hole in tarmac, which soon settles and puddles. As Council's have a got a grip of the quality of the public realm, millions of pounds worth of damage to good modern – often decorative – paving is inflicted by these companies, leaving us with uneven and patchwork walking environments
  • dig up roads without coordinating with other utilities, so that the same road can be dug up successively, causing disruption and traffic delays
  • fail to make rapid progress with works, also causing traffic delays in roads, and unsightly and often unsafe conditions on pavements

It's time these powers were removed, and they were forced to book their work with the council,  pay for the chaos they cause (including delays to drivers and passengers), and reinstate like for like.

Revise the smoking ban

I am a smoker and do appreciate the improvements in general that have been acheived in the UK by this law.

I am also aware of the absurdity that exists where in some cases pubs now have a external smoking zone on public footpaths creating a congested area of drinking, smoking rowdies and a 'fog' of smoke which other members of the public have to pass through or avoid by crossing to the other side of the street.

It also creates late night noise and disturbance outside pubs and clubs where neither the 'landlord' nor the authorities are able/willing to address unless it escalates to another level and finally creates litter in the form of cigarette butts, empty beer glassess, broken glass and other litter spread around the vicinity.

I have noted that in some cases, airports for example, smoking areas have sensibly been re- introduced inside the terminal building, albeit that they are not actually 'in the building' and are distinctly basic, to avoid smokers taking to the toilets for a final fix before their flights.

The law is virtually unenforceable with regard to lorry drivers who smoke in their 'company' cabs.

The law must also have deterred a proportion of the public from 'dining out' although this probably has encouraged non smokers to enjoy themselves more.

I also have visited restuarants, bars and other places abroad where smokers are allowed but segregated from non smokers; where there are 'smoking allowed' and 'non smoking' establishments and thsi approach seems sensible.

The 'one size fits all' is fine for the nanny state where it is practical and can be made to work without creating other problems, but why can't the Smoking Ban be revised to allow some degree of choice with proper controls (e.g. extraction/filtering of air) and where smoking is licensed inside buildings.

I do not advocate a repeal as I think the principle is good but I would like to see some revisions to address the balance and provide flexibility and practicality.

Why is this idea important?

I am a smoker and do appreciate the improvements in general that have been acheived in the UK by this law.

I am also aware of the absurdity that exists where in some cases pubs now have a external smoking zone on public footpaths creating a congested area of drinking, smoking rowdies and a 'fog' of smoke which other members of the public have to pass through or avoid by crossing to the other side of the street.

It also creates late night noise and disturbance outside pubs and clubs where neither the 'landlord' nor the authorities are able/willing to address unless it escalates to another level and finally creates litter in the form of cigarette butts, empty beer glassess, broken glass and other litter spread around the vicinity.

I have noted that in some cases, airports for example, smoking areas have sensibly been re- introduced inside the terminal building, albeit that they are not actually 'in the building' and are distinctly basic, to avoid smokers taking to the toilets for a final fix before their flights.

The law is virtually unenforceable with regard to lorry drivers who smoke in their 'company' cabs.

The law must also have deterred a proportion of the public from 'dining out' although this probably has encouraged non smokers to enjoy themselves more.

I also have visited restuarants, bars and other places abroad where smokers are allowed but segregated from non smokers; where there are 'smoking allowed' and 'non smoking' establishments and thsi approach seems sensible.

The 'one size fits all' is fine for the nanny state where it is practical and can be made to work without creating other problems, but why can't the Smoking Ban be revised to allow some degree of choice with proper controls (e.g. extraction/filtering of air) and where smoking is licensed inside buildings.

I do not advocate a repeal as I think the principle is good but I would like to see some revisions to address the balance and provide flexibility and practicality.

Pavement Parking

My civil libery is to be able to walk along a pavement without  having to negotiate around vehicles that have park on it, it is an offence under the Highway code to drive and park on the pavement, so please introduce a law which protects all pavement users such as Children, disabled people, blind and wheelchair bound, at present we have no law that states its an offence to park a vehicle on a pavement, we have many laws such as a driver of a vehicle must not  use a mobile phone whilst driving a moving vehicle; failure to wear a seat belt not that I want people injured but the only person who invariable gets hurt if they do not wear a seat belt is the person not complying with the law. Both of these being very difficult to Police.  Many groups and assosiations are trying to get this law introduced so that pavements are safe places to proceed along. I believe the Government have duty of care to all persons who use pavements, not introducing this law show the lack of concern for our children and other legal pavement  users.

Why is this idea important?

My civil libery is to be able to walk along a pavement without  having to negotiate around vehicles that have park on it, it is an offence under the Highway code to drive and park on the pavement, so please introduce a law which protects all pavement users such as Children, disabled people, blind and wheelchair bound, at present we have no law that states its an offence to park a vehicle on a pavement, we have many laws such as a driver of a vehicle must not  use a mobile phone whilst driving a moving vehicle; failure to wear a seat belt not that I want people injured but the only person who invariable gets hurt if they do not wear a seat belt is the person not complying with the law. Both of these being very difficult to Police.  Many groups and assosiations are trying to get this law introduced so that pavements are safe places to proceed along. I believe the Government have duty of care to all persons who use pavements, not introducing this law show the lack of concern for our children and other legal pavement  users.

Reduce and Simplify Speed Limit

Reduce and simplify speed limits for all vehicles on all roads (possible exception of motorways). For example, all roads within a town area to have a speed limit of 20mph and all roads outside of town area to be 40mph. There would be little or no need for speed limit signs either.

Why is this idea important?

Reduce and simplify speed limits for all vehicles on all roads (possible exception of motorways). For example, all roads within a town area to have a speed limit of 20mph and all roads outside of town area to be 40mph. There would be little or no need for speed limit signs either.

Parking on pavements

Parking of vehicles on pavements should only be permitted if a gap is left wide enough to allow a wheelchair, disabled buggy or pushchair to pass on the pavement – perhaps a gap of 4ft/1.2metres; leaving a gap of less than this would constitute an offence.  At the moment, I believe obstruction has to be proved, which seems to be sufficiently difficult to rule out any prosecutions from ever being made.  Motorists therefore park on pavements with impunity, forcing people to move out into the traffic.  Specifying the size of gap to be left would make proof of an offence being committed quite straightforward.

Why is this idea important?

Parking of vehicles on pavements should only be permitted if a gap is left wide enough to allow a wheelchair, disabled buggy or pushchair to pass on the pavement – perhaps a gap of 4ft/1.2metres; leaving a gap of less than this would constitute an offence.  At the moment, I believe obstruction has to be proved, which seems to be sufficiently difficult to rule out any prosecutions from ever being made.  Motorists therefore park on pavements with impunity, forcing people to move out into the traffic.  Specifying the size of gap to be left would make proof of an offence being committed quite straightforward.

Street Laws No Longer Enforced

Repeal the laws concerning riding bicycles on the pavements and car-parking on the pavements as these laws are now no longer enforced by the police.

Evidence for this can be seen in any town or city in the country – it is now safer for pedestrians to walk in the road.

Why is this idea important?

Repeal the laws concerning riding bicycles on the pavements and car-parking on the pavements as these laws are now no longer enforced by the police.

Evidence for this can be seen in any town or city in the country – it is now safer for pedestrians to walk in the road.