Marlborough Transport - Present and Future:  A Policy Framework



The purpose of this document is to set out a common set of principles which can be used to guide Transition Marlborough’s discussion and decision-making on transport matters for Marlborough and the surrounding area. 


A number of projects and proposals affecting transport are currently under discussion.  Transition Marlborough must approach these in a co-ordinated way.  Although it is important that we deal rationally with current problems, we should not lose sight of the longer-term goals of transition, particularly the reduction of fossil fuel consumption.

What is our vision for the future?

A community that thinks, plans and acts locally.  The main features of transport in such a community would be:

  • More walking and cycling
  • Less private car usage
  • An excellent public transport system – not just for those at the margins who are unable to use private cars.
  • Extensive and efficient home delivery systems

What transport trends should we encourage?  “Fewer, shorter, better.”

       Personal journeys

·       Fewer journeys           –  Is your journey necessary?

·       Shorter journeys         – Do it locally

·       Better journeys           – Travel virtuously

       Home delivery/shopping

·       Fewer deliveries         –  Consolidate your order

·       Shorter deliveries       – Buy it locally

·       Better deliveries         – Shop virtuously

Improve your “personal virtue rating”




Electric bike


Electric delivery van (charged from non-fossil generated electricity)


Electric car (charged from non-fossil generated electriciity)


Bus / train


Shared car (internal combustion engine)


Individual car/motorcycle (internal combustion engine) - economy


Individual car/motorcycle (internal combustion engine) - extravagant






·      Less haulage                – Manufacture locally

·      Shorter haulage          – Sell locally

·      Better haulage            – Deliver virtuously    

What are the current local issues?


1.      Parking and congestion

·         Limited on-street parking for Marlborough residents. 

·         Road congestion in Marlborough – especially the High Street - at peak times

·         Lack of free/affordable parking for workers commuting into Marlborough. 

·         Availability/cost of parking for shoppers 


2.      Public bus provision 

·           Existing services don’t start early enough for more remote journeys to work. 

·           Poor service for workers commuting into Marlborough. 

·           Very limited late night and Sunday services. 

·           Difficulty getting reliable published information. 

·           No real-time information. 

·           Poor bus stop facilities. 

·           Long journey times due to circuitous routes


3.      Rail transport

·           No Marlborough station. 

·           Infrequent and unreliable bus links to Bedwyn. 

·           Serious parking problems at Bedwyn. 

·           Concerns over future of FGW services. 

·           Cost of rail tickets from Pewsey and Swindon.


4.      Road traffic impact on villages.  Some villages in the area suffer from the effects of highway traffic.


5    Cycling provision 

·         Limited routes for cyclists around Marlborough. 

·         Poor cycle rack facilities.

The “transition view” on current local issues

1.      Parking and congestion  Parking and congestion in Marlborough are not “transition” problems.  Indeed they act as a deterrent to individual car use and tend to make walking and cycling safer.  However any change to the current provision would need to be very carefully considered with regard to the impact on retailers.  Marlborough has always been a market town.  People come here to trade and this must continue.  In the long term we would like to see a higher quality bus network and this should serve to reduce parking and congestion problems.  Parking fees currently raise considerable revenue for Wilts Council.  This revenue should be used to improve Marlborough’s public transport provision.  Our Wilts councillors should press for a breakdown of transport income (including parking revenue) and transport expenditure for the Marlborough area.

2.      Public bus provision  Bus provision is being reduced for financial reasons.  We are in a cycle of:  poor provision, therefore little use;  little use, therefore no point in improving provision.  This cycle needs to be broken by improving the service and actively marketing the improved service to build up usage.  A community minbus service could be part this.  Community First have been charged with administering the Wiltshire Community Transport Development Fund.  CF’s Accelerate programme can also provide support.  A future “Business Improvement District” might also play a role in this.  A future “Marlborough Transport Company” might be feasible.

3.      Rail transport  We want a railway station for Marlborough (long term vision)  Meanwhile we want improvements to the Bedwyn link bus (perhaps through “Accelerate”).  We want the existing FGW service to be preserved, or even improved.

4.      Road traffic impact on villages.  We support the “Hamilton Baillie” initiative which seeks to reduce traffic impact on villages through creative adaptation of road markings.  Consideration should also be given to a similar review of Marlborough High Street.

5.      Cycling provision  Safe routes around Marlborough should be publicised and improved.  Cycle rack facilitiies, especially in Marlborough High Street, should be improved.  Links into the surrounding cycleway network should be improved.  School children should be encouraged to cycle to school.





Contributors to this page: Sam Page and John Yates .
Page last modified on Thursday 11 October, 2012 14:27:46 BST by Sam Page.