Pedal Power
Issue 94
September 2011

www.ldcuc.org.uk

Woodthorpe Roundabout

The e-petition relating to our concerns about the hazards caused to pedestrians and cyclists by the layout of this roundabout was presented on the 12th of July to the Leicestershire County Council Highways Forum. The committee asked officers to have a meeting with members of the CTC and the LDCUC to discuss matters.

On 23rd August Ray Clay and John Catt (LDCUC & CTC), and David Slater (County Councillor, Leader of Charnwood Borough Council) met with officers from Leicestershire County Council, Martin O'Connor and Anne Smith. After some discussion, and subject to budget being available, it was agreed that the officers would investigate the option of installing a bollard together with white lining to interrupt the “racing curve” from the roundabout into Allendale Road. This would slow vehicles, allowing an increase in the margin of error for all users.

Personal Travel Plan Project - Loughborough

As part of their "Choose How You Move" campaign, Leicestershire County Council (LCC) will be carrying out a Personal Travel Plan (PTP) project aimed at Loughborough residents during September 2011. During the project they aim to contact 4,000 households in Loughborough, concentrating on two areas intitially. If this is successful, other areas within could be targeted for future PTP projects.

PTP projects have been successful elsewhere in the UK in reducing car trips and boosting sustainable travel options (e.g. walking, cycling, public transport use etc.) particularly for short, local journeys. This is achieved via the delivery of information to householders on their doorsteps by trained Travel Advisors. However, PTP is not a "hard sell" exercise and the choice to participate lies with the individual.

The information provided is known as a "travel pack", and this will include walking, cycling and public transport maps or guides, public transport information, guidance on eco-driving and car sharing leaflets. Each travel pack will be tailored to the individual and posted out to the householder shortly after the travel advisor has visited. Further information is available from Charlie Sampson Tel. 0116 305 7098 or Charles.Sampson@leics.gov.uk

The Visions for Walking and Cycling Survey

The Visions for Walking and Cycling is a research project which seeks to assess the potential in the UK for achieving substantial increases in walking and cycling, and in improving the quality of the walking and cycling experience, by 2030.

As part of the research, they have created an online survey. By taking part in this research you will be helping them to gain a better understanding of your perceptions and experiences about cycling, particularly in terms of what helps and hinders you in cycling, and how the physical environment can be improved to enhance your cycling experience. The survey can be found at http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/2HPV82W .

The importance of men's attitude

Sophia Howard responds to the article “Why do fewer women cycle” in Pedal Power 93

In my experience, it is often the attitude of men that enables a woman to get cycling (or not).

I learned to ride a bicycle when a boy up our road gave our family his old one when he had a new one for Christmas.

I was able to buy my first bicycle because the landlord where I was lodging in the remote Gloucestershire historic village of Berkley drove me to a bicycle shop. I particularly needed to cycle because there were no buses on Sundays.

Then at another of my student lodgings it was the helpfulness and knowledge of the landlord in lending tools and doing small repairs that kept my bicycle roadworthy. Having an alley, a shed or a corner of the house where a bicycle can be parked makes it so much easier to be a cyclist.

I have a relative who is against cycling as in her experience cycling “causes bad knees”, but she has never been in a sports club where somebody could have told her to resolve the problem by getting the right size bicycle and seat adjustment.

Also women are less likely to have money for sports injury (private) practitioners, or for personal accident insurance.

Cycle scheme for asylum-seekers and refugees

Leicester City of Sanctuary, the British Red Cross, CTC, and Bikes4All are collaborating to take old/damaged/unwanted bicycles and bring them back to a usable state.

Bikes4All, however, is in need of more bicycles to refurbish. So if any of you have bicycles to spare, whatever their state, please contact: Michael Tully (tully.michael@gmail.com) or on 0116 278 1449 (with ansaphone), who will cheerfully arrange for collection. Any spare accessories (lights, locks etc.) would also be very welcome.

Improve the commute

Loughborough University has undertaken a study to monitor the travel involved with the daily commute. You can see a fascinating visualisation of this, colour segregated by the various modes of transport, at http://www.improvethecommute.info/ .

Name needed for campaigning toolkit

Since CycleStreets won £27,000 for the development of their campaigning toolkit they have been pondering what to call it. Suggestions can be posted to their blog http://www.cyclestreets.net/blog/ . You will also find there details of a new Android “app” using their mapping system.

Fairmeadows Way Speed Tables

Two speed tables with tactile crossing points on are to be installed on Fairmeadows Way outside Woodbrook Vale High School. The scheme is designed to reduce vehicle speeds in the vicinity of the school to reduce the hazard of speeding vehicles for pupils walking and cycling to school.

Safer Cycling

UK cycle use in 2010 was 5 billion kms, a little higher than 2009, taking it to its highest level for 20 years. The likelihood of being killed while cycling is 54% lower than it was in 1990.

Similar figures have also been published for the capital, where in 2010 cycling increased by 15%. Injuries in London rose by 9% but remain 18% lower than in the mid-1990s.

CTC / Cyclenation / CycleSheffield Conference

This annual autumn conference will be held at Sheffield University (Firth Court, S10 2TN) on Saturday 15th October 2011 and has the theme: “Cycle Campaigning and Localism – Threats and Opportunities”

It is aimed at everyone wishing to promote frequent and safe cycling and will include representatives from organisations promoting cycling. eg: CTC, Cyclenation, local authorities, politicians, Sustrans etc. The cost is £20 which includes the conference fee, lunch, tea and coffee.

The keynote speaker will be Danny Dorling (Professor of Human Geography in the University of Sheffield) on “ Social Mobility and Access – Cycling’s contribution? ”

Registration: http://www.cyclesheffield.org.uk/conference/

Cyclenation supports stricter liability

Cyclenation supports the principle of stricter liability for motorists who are involved in collisions with vulnerable road users. It is important to recognise the difference between liability and culpability, and it is also important that this principle also applies to cyclists who collide with pedestrians - for insurance purposes it would be assumed that the cyclist was at fault.

Cyclenation proposes to make this a key campaign issue for 2011.

Cyclenation Forum

Members may be interested in joining the Cyclenation forum on Google groups. This gives you an opportunity to discuss issues with campaigners from other groups across the country. It's a Google group, so if you have a Google account (recommended), go to https://groups.google.com/ search for cyclenation-forum and sign up. If you're using a non-google address, you can subscribe by email - send an email to cyclenationforum+subscribe@googlegroups.com.

Contact the Secretary, Simon Geller (secretary@cyclenation.org.uk ) if you have any problems.

What Government needs to do

Cyclenation President, Phillip Darnton included this in a recent article for Cambridge Cycle Campaign.

“Instead of plodding around in the intellectual niceties of behaviour change theories, government would do better to do what it’s there for – to define a real strategy for transport, and within that, to set a long-term commitment to cycling as a (small, but important) part of an integrated transport policy; to pursue it consistently and continuously over the next 30 years; to demonstrate the leadership and political will to push it through, and to recognise that getting people to adopt changes to their lifestyle – especially when they are quite happy with the status quo – is not a ‘quick fix’. It cannot be achieved with constant political posturing, or a small ‘local people know best’ pot of money lasting three years.

That sounds like a worthwhile challenge, and deserving of some intellectual rigour and clear-sighted strategic leadership. ‘Nudges and winks' are not much encouragement even to a blind horse – and they certainly won’t make a ha’porth of difference to cycling. The Lords’ Sub Committee wanted to know why cycling levels were so different in Europe, and whether the UK could ever be remotely like the continent: ‘Is it just all different over there?’ Well, perhaps we do still see ourselves as little Englanders; but we would be surprised at what would happen if we, like Denmark or the Netherlands, adopted a long-term integrated transport strategy, and backed it with continuity of investment. As the man from Odense said: “All you have to do is start a long time ago, and keep going‟.

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