Camden addresses Church Row chaos by moving traffic bollard

A Mini going through the new width restriction on Church Row

A Mini driver carefully navigating the new width restriction on Church Row - Credit: Polly Hancock

Camden Council confirmed the the width restriction in Church Row has been "enlarged slightly" after dozens of vehicles were scratched and traffic jams formed.

On Monday morning (July 19) this newspaper counted eight vehicles turning around and five being scratched when trying to pass through the width restrictions in Hampstead, which have been moved a short distance along the road. 

The restrictions are designed to limit the width of vehicles to 6' 6" (2.1m), but over the past few days vehicles narrower than this have been damaged amid traffic chaos.

Although Camden Council initially stated the issue had been that bollard was "leaning slightly", the town hall has since clarified that the eastward side of the road has seen the width restriction enlarged.

A Camden Council spokesperson said: "The restrictions on Church Row have been moved a short distance from their previous location.

“These were initially constructed to a width of 6' 6" (2.1m), the same width as the previous location, on Friday 16 July.

“Following reports that certain vehicles were struggling to fit through, the eastbound restriction was enlarged slightly to better match the curvature in the road on Monday 19 July.

“Whilst we are continuing to monitor the situation, we are confident that emergency vehicles can pass while unsuitable HGV traffic is stopped.”

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Brian Freedman, of nearby Bracknell Gardens, told this paper: “It's just crazy because unless you drive a really small car, it's virtually impossible to get through."

UPDATED July 20, 6.10pm: This story originally included a statement from Camden Council, saying one of the bollards was leaning and would be adjusted. The council has since amended its statement to say that a bollard was moved after vehicles were unable to get through.