Loughborough & District
Cycle Users' Campaign

Pedal Power
Issue 124
September 2016


AGM - 3rd time lucky?

For those readers who are members and whom this reaches in time, please try and attend our AGM at 7-30pm on Monday 12th September 2016 at the Toby Carvery, Forest Road, Loughborough, LE11 3HU.

Loughborough College Car Park Barriers

Steven Brandist reports that Loughborough College have installed additional car park barriers. One is on the rear edge of the site - the road that leads to the rear car park and towards William Way. The other is across the entire carriageway of Radmoor Road - the main road that crosses the site.

The site is not public land and the roads are technically private. In term time a huge proportion of pedestrian and cycle traffic is heading across the site to/from the University. It seems that the cycle provision has not been thought through. There is no bypass or dropped kerb for cyclists and wheelchair users.

On the other barriers on the site the poles have been cut short and a cycle lane has been painted on the ground.

Ray Clay has already complained on behalf of Cycling UK. We will be adding to this if no changes are made. If you are passing and note that the arrangements are still unsatisfactory, please email the Principal: Heather.macdonald@loucoll.ac.uk with a copy to Max.hunt@leics.gov.uk .

Photos by Steven Brandist

Leicestershire’s Highway maintenance

Leicestershire County Council (LCC) has launched a consultation to seek feedback on how Leicestershire’s roads, pavements and verges should be maintained in the future.

Currently £26M is spent each year on looking after the county’s roads, pavements and verges. The target for the budget by 2020 is £16.5m. The Council is proposing a new strategy for its budget which will:

  • Prioritise high risk repairs when responding to highway defects and focus resources on planned repairs and preventative maintenance;
  • Reduce the number of items maintained by the Council and/or increase the period between maintenance works being undertaken;
  • Involve communities directly in maintaining the streetscape and road-side environment.

To participate please go to www.leicestershire.gov.uk/highwaysconsultation. You need to submit your views by midnight Sunday 25 September 2016.

Leicestershire Strategic Growth Plan

The nine local authorities in Leicester and Leicestershire together with the Leicester & Leicestershire Local Enterprise Partnership (LLEP) are preparing a new Strategic Plan.

The ambition is that the plan will make it possible to control - jointly, for Leicester and Leicestershire - how expected population and economic growth will be accommodated and supported, and how existing problems can be resolved:

  • what type of development is needed and by when;
  • what is the most appropriate location for these developments;
  • which environmental assets should be protected and enhanced;
  • what investment in services and infrastructure is required where and by when.

Member may wish to submit their views. In particular you might wish to emphasise the need for future development to make it easy to adopt a lifestyle based on active travel, in particular by:

  • making future developments permeable (allowing people to pass from one estate to another without having to walk or cycle out of an estate in order to get onto the neighbouring estate);
  • ensuring that all future developments (including housing) make provision for easily accessible and secure cycle parking.

A consultation on the draft Strategic Growth Statement is under way ending on 16th September 2016. You will find details at http://www.llstrategicgrowthplan.org.uk/.

Inactive travel threatening our health

A report “Health in a hurry” ( http://goo.gl/MJVVNW ) by the Royal Society for Public Health, a charity working to improve public health, says that:

  • the average 56 minutes spent 'passive commuting' - 79 minutes in London - increases stress;
  • adds an average of nearly 800 calories to diets;
  • commutes are eating into time for physical exercise;
  • lead to snacking;
  • overcrowding affects mental health.

Employers are urged to allow greater flexible working in order to reduce traffic and overcrowding and promote cycling and walking, and for 'health and well-being' to be a specification for train and bus franchises. Advising of train capacity on different services is one suggestion for achieving this.

Slight drop in cyclist road casualties

Based on an article in Cycling UK Campaign News

Reported road casualty figures for the first quarter of 2016 show that, in the year ending March 2016, the number of killed or seriously injured (KSI) cyclists fell slightly by 3% when compared with the same period the year before. There was, however, an increase in pedestrian and car occupant KSI.

Fatalities amongst all road users remained static while traffic levels rose by 1.8%, meaning that the fatality rate per billion vehicle miles went down by 2%. In terms of absolute numbers, slight casualties fell a little, although this could reflect a shift towards reporting casualties as serious rather than slight through a new centralised system called CRASH (Collision Recording and Sharing) that some police forces have started to use.

Annual Cycle Campaigners' Conference

The 2016 Conference will be held on Saturday 19th November at Dagnall Street Baptist Church, St Albans, from 11am to 6pm.

Most of Britain will hold local elections next May and the long-awaited Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy is likely to focus on local delivery and be published before the conference, so there'll be plenty to cover. The programme is being developed but the plan is for 14 presenters in 4 plenary sessions and a total of 15 workshops across 3 further sessions, to ensure the day informs and inspires continued campaigning.

The venue and over half the presenters are confirmed so please save the date and start making your travel arrangements - cheap Advance Fare train tickets are now on sale. There's plenty of capacity so all are welcome, and if you're considering staying overnight there will be an 'infrastructure safari' in London on the Sunday.

Final details will appear on the Cyclenation Website.

Velo-City 2017 (June 13 - 16)

The next host for the annual international cycling conference is Arnhem-Nijmegen in the Netherlands.

It will show how cycling has evolved in the Netherlands, and Velo-city will demonstrate its plans to get more people cycling. The Arnhem-Nijmegen region is one of the most progressive leading cycling regions in the Netherlands and has developed a cycling infrastructure in which cyclists and bicycles have come to receive top priority. Safety and speed are core values, cyclists are respected and much innovation has been seen.

Arnhem and Nijmegen are only 15 kilometres apart. A unique transport system and bicycle infrastructure provide the perfect link between Nijmegen, the oldest town in the Netherlands, and Arnhem, which featured strongly during the Second World War. A cycle superhighway allows cyclists to cycle from one city centre to the other in just 40 minutes.

The Arnhem-Nijmegen region is well on its way to becoming the fourth largest economy in the Netherlands, mostly thanks to its innovative nature. The region has many unique selling points where bicycles are concerned. A few examples:

    'Het Groentje'Bridge
  • The special bicycle bridge over the River Waal is the perfect solution and a 'must see' in light of the global issue of bicycle access over bridges, rivers, canals and train routes. The same applies to the 'Het Groentje' bicycle bridge on the cycle superhighway between Nijmegen and Arnhem.
  • The largest, most extensive and top-quality cycle superhighway network in the Netherlands. 60 kilometres of cycle path will be built by 2017, most of which will be non-stop routes.
  • Huge bicycle parking facilities with thousands of spaces have been built into Nijmegen and Arnhem's central train stations.
  • The ‘OV Chipkaart’ is a good example of coordination between public transport and bicycles, because the card can be used to rent an ‘OV-fiets’ bicycle as well as for other public transport services. This leads to completely coordinated connections between both cities.
  • Free, secure bicycle parking facilities in Arnhem and Nijmegen.

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