An Open Letter to our New Councillors

Dear Councillors,

Richmond is an amazing place to cycle and walk. We’re already a healthy borough with some of the best cycling numbers in London and we’re one of the boroughs where residents are most likely to have cycled in the last week.

This year, every major party in the borough committed to a high quality ‘Liveable Neighbourhoods’ bid. This is an opportunity to get millions of pounds of TfL money to invigorate part of your ward and we’d love everyone to take part.

Cycling and walking (‘active travel’) is also one of the cheapest but most effective things you can do to make your ward a better place. Since 2000, a variety of different measures have appeared in the borough, focusing on making our streets nicer, safer, less congested, and less polluted. These have come from both Conservative and Liberal Democrat councils and councillors, and we’d like this to continue.

But we need your help and so do your constituents. There are a lot of things that can be done in the borough and we wanted to share just some of the options that are available to you.

Everything you see below is part of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy – you can read a huge volume of important evidence here. By helping to deliver for your borough, you’ll be making it a healthier, cleaner, quieter, safer place for everyone, however they travel.

20 miles an hour

All the parties seem to agree that it’s finally time for 20mph in Richmond and it’s our understanding that planning for a consultation has already been largely done. We, and many other community groups, are very keen to see this go ahead. Slower speeds on our roads have all the benefits that you might expect – improved air quality, safer streets, calmer streets, easier crossings, safer cycling.

We know there’ll be a consultation after the summer, and we urge you to support 20mph across our borough.

Healthy School Streets

Camden is introducing ‘Healthy School Streets’. School streets are closed to traffic (except cycles) at school opening and closing times to make it possible for more children to walk and cycle safely to school and to reduce the air pollution in the area. You can see an example on the video here. (And one of their recent consultations here.)

Every school in our borough could benefit from less traffic at dropping off and picking up time. Persuading as many people as possible not to drive at these times will have a beneficial effect on the congestion the borough experiences.


‘Filtering’ is the act of blocking a street so that it filters out one type of traffic – usually motor vehicles: filters allow streets to be used by people walking and cycling but prevent motor vehicles using them as a through road. They can be permanent and they can be temporary. In the borough, we have lots of streets – like this one – which have been closed to through traffic.

Well Lane

A recent problem is the growth of apps like Waze – which basically enables people to use all the quiet back roads and calm streets in your area as rat runs. Filtering is one way to make sure residential streets stay residential and also make them places where people are more likely to walk and cycle.

This little group of roads (image below), with the South Circular at one end, shows the benefits of filtering: because you can’t use them to get to the South Circular, the only reason to drive here is to get to your home, meaning they are quiet and calm virtually 24/7.

Bike Parking

If we want more people on bikes, we need to be sure we’re making it possible to store them somewhere safe and convenient. This applies both to places like stations and town centres, and homes.


In other boroughs, there are dozens of locked, overnight shelters available so that people don’t need to drag their bikes through their house or flat, and so that they can store it out of the weather. Under the previous administration, these ‘cycle hangars’ have slowly started arriving. You can see how many some boroughs have by looking at this map – each shelter holds six bikes, and perhaps the best way to think of them is this: every bike which is easily accessible is a journey someone is less likely to do in a car.

The council has a list of people who’ve already asked for something like this, and we need your support to make sure they go in!

Pedestrian Priority

We think people walking is a good thing and we’re sure that you do too. So one of the things we’d like to see is the use of continuous footways. Here’s one in Waltham Forest: it doesn’t stop people driving into the road, or exiting it, but the priority is for pedestrians.
This type of junction is becoming increasingly common across London and the UK. When used where quieter roads join main roads, it helps significantly to enforce the Highway Code rules on pedestrian priority at side streets. (You can see we half did the job at Wharf Lane / King Street, in Twickenham – wouldn’t it be better for people if it looked like the Waltham Forest example, below?)

WF cross street

(Picture courtesy of Enfield Cycling Campaign)

TfL’s Corridors

Transport for London has been doing a lot of work looking at how people travel and how they might travel. They’ve identified a series of routes in London which they think have the opportunity to carry significant volumes of cycling traffic. These are a number of these routes in our borough: they not only support commuting by cycle but also people getting around the borough.
We’d like these routes to be prioritised for walking and cycling as a matter of urgency and we need your support for this.
This is the current list of the corridors as we understand it:
C1) A305 Richmond Road (j/w Aragon Rd – Richmond Bridge)
C2) A305 Sheen Road (j/w Church Rd to TLRN URRW)
C3) A306 Castlenau & Rocks Lane (j/w URRW – Hammersmith Bridge)
C4) A313 Park Rd, Hampton Road & Teddington High Street (j/w Uxbridge Rd – Kingston Road)
C5) A311 Hampton Hill & Hampton Road (j/w Upper Sunbury Rd – Heath Rd)
C6) A310 Kingston Road, Strawberry Vale & Cross Deep (j/w Kingston Bridge rdbt – King St)
C7) A3004 St Margarets Road (j/w Richmond Road to boundary)
C8) A307 Kew Road (Richmond Circus – TLRN Mortlake Rd)
C9) A305 Staines Road / The Green (j/w A316 – Heath Rd/The Green)
C10) A308 Upper Sunbury Rd & Hampton Court Rd (borough boundary to j/w Kingston Bridge rdbt)
C11) B358 Nelson Rd, HBR & Sixth Cross Rd (j/w Hanworth Rd – Hampton Rd)
C12) A3003 Mortlake High Street & B350 Lonsdale Rd (j/w A316 – Castlenau)
C13) A312 Uxbridge Road (j/w Hampton Hill HS – boundary)

Dockless Bikes

We know some councillors have already received enquiries about these. London Cycling Campaign supports almost anything that encourages more people to use bikes to get around and dockless bikes (like Ofo, who have a trial contract with the borough) definitely fall into that category. We’d urge everyone to sign up for this – even if you don’t use the bikes, the app is a great way to report bikes which have been left in the wrong place.

You can also suggest good locations for the bikes to be parked, by using this link: all the bike providers operate a ‘reward’ system which encourages people to leave bikes tidily and in the right place.

Liveable Neighbourhoods

Major funding from TfL is currently focussed on councils who make a ‘Liveable Neighbourhoods’ bid. As part of the election, all the parties in Richmond committed to making a ‘high quality’ bid. This is a great opportunity for every ward in the borough because a successful bid can be for a town centre, a residential area, or a specific route.

Consultation is Key

We know that getting the public on board for walking and cycling schemes is absolutely crucial. There’s a lot of best practice now available from other boroughs and from TfL, as well as committed funding specifically for public engagement in Liveable Neighbourhoods. ‘Bikelash’ is a real thing and we’re keen to make sure it doesn’t hold us back, so we would urge you to reach out to us, to officials, and to supportive groups like LCC, Living Streets, 20s Plenty, Sustrans, Cycling UK, and all the others who can help with this.


Richmond Cycling Campaign

Richmond Rides for Explorers – An on-road ride in NW Surrey

Sunday 10th  June

A new ride by a new ride leader – will be appreciated by riders who don’t like my muddy bridle-paths !

Meet Twickenham Riverside 10.30

We cut across to Hampton then broadly follow the river up to Chertsey then on to Egham and up to Englefield Green. We then go around the outside of Windsor Great Park to reach the spectacular heathland of Chobham Common before descending to the Thames at Weybridge and returning along the south bank.

48 miles and quite hilly.


Contact Christopher :

Stag Brewery – we’re not happy

We’ve responded to the Stag Brewery consultations, and we’ve objected.

Whatever you may think of the development itself, our concern is that it fails to support active travel, and it utterly fails to making walking and cycling compelling options for the area.

The consultation has three parts – the main site, the school, and Chalker’s Corner.

Our responses are below. Please take a moment to tell the council they aren’t good enough on these links:
Application A – the main site
Application C – Chalker’s Corner

Application A Response

I am responding to this planning application on behalf of Richmond Cycling Campaign, the local branch of London Cycling Campaign.

We object to planning application A on the following grounds:

On transport issues, Application A does not meet LBRUTs own requirements as set out in the LBRUT Development Management Plan .

In particular the proposal does not address the requirements to:

  • Create or improve links with the local and wider transport networks, including links to the cycle and pedestrian networks (see page 101)
  • Protect maintain or improve the pedestrian environment (see page 103) for the increased number of pedestrian movements on & off the site
  • Maintain and improve conditions for cyclists (see page 105). With the increased population & increased number of journeys, conditions on the roads & towpath are likely to be worsened for cyclists.
  • Ensure that excessive parking demand  is not created which could have an adverse impact on the local highway/ traffic conditions (see page 106)

In general, we object to the overall failure to ensure that active travel is a core element of this development: as a dense development in an area with good access to a wide range of facilities, this is a design which should have all the key elements of active travel ‘baked in’ at this early stage. Until we see designs which included dedicated cycling facilities through and around the site, sufficient cycling parking for all residents and visitors, and the prioriitisation of links for people walking over people driving, we do not believe this application should pass.

Application C Response

Dear Richmond Council.

I am responding to this planning application on behalf of Richmond Cycling Campaign, the local branch of London Cycling Campaign.

We object to planning application C on the following grounds:

  1. It is in breach of the Mayor’s Transport Strategy goals because it fails to support the aims for reduction in motor traffic, and proper support for walking and cycling.
  2. The design utterly fails to provide suitable conditions for walking and cycling, and prioritises the movement of large volumes of motor traffic over all other uses at the junction.
  3. The overall design for the area and the development does not have any provision for walking and cycling from the development to any destination. Only the existing provision (of pavements, and small sections of unsafe cycle lane) remains.
  4. For a site with a 1,200+ person school, the absence of active travel provision is unacceptable. (Whatever the size of the school, there is clearly insufficient capacity for the increase in footfall or cycling which would be required to not turn the entire area to gridlock.
  5. We believe that any plans for Chalker’s Corner needs to be part of a wider traffic strategy in the area which is designed to move through traffic away from non-trunk roads, and which “bakes in” segregated cycling provision and safe walking provision to provide local people with genuine options for how they move around our borough.
  6. The plans and design are not in compliance with council strategies on air quality and traffic.
  7. The designs do not meet the requirements set out in the council development management plan: In particular:
  • Create or improve links with the local and wider transport networks, including links to the cycle and pedestrian networks(see page 101)
  • Protect maintain or improve the pedestrian environment(see page 103) for the increased number of pedestrian movements on & off the site
  • Maintain and improve conditions for cyclists(see page 105). With the increased population & increased number of journeys, conditions on the roads & towpath are likely to be worsened for cyclists.
  • Ensure that excessive parking demand  is not created which could have an adverse impact on the local highway/ traffic conditions(see page 106)
  1. The proposal is not compliant with TfL’s ‘Streetscape Guidance’, the London Cycle Design Standards (LCDS), nor does it include a Healthy Streets check. It is our opinion that the designs would fail both an LCDS review, and a Healthy Streets check, with Chalker’s Corner including a number of ‘critical fails’ in the LCDS review.

In general, the failure to provide for active travel is a fundamental failing of this plan. If we build dense new developments like this, which assume high levels of car use, then that is what we will get.

Rides for Everybody – Palaces of West London

Osterley 2017Saturday 19th May

Meet Richmond Little Green by theatre at 10.00am.

We Cross the Thames and pass through the grounds of Sion House before heading up the Grand Union Canal to Norwood Green. A country lane takes us into the wide spaces of Osterley Park where we enjoy coffee in the stables before passing the mansion on the way home. About 10 miles, quiet with some slopes. Should be back around 12 ish.


Rides for Explorers – Windsor Great Park – 6th May

Windsor Ride May 17 2SORRY  RIDE POSTPONED

Meet Twickenham Riverside , by Eel Pie Bridge , 10.30. Sunday 6th  May

We cut across to Hampton then roughly follow the Thames upstream using NCR4 from Chertsey to Staines. A steep climb to Englefield Green is rewarded by lunch at the Sun Inn then we enjoy the practically traffic free Windsor Great Park and track into Windsor. We than return more directly to Twickenham with more mixed surroundings but finishing with our local Crane Park trail.  38 miles with one big hill.


Local Elections – Call your Candidates!

Here’s what we’ve written to the leaders of all the parties in Richmond’s up-coming elections.

Can you contact your candidate and ask them? Use this link!

And if you’d like to know more about what a great Liveable Neighbourhood is, LCC & Living Streets have put these excellent documents together.

Liveable London banner

Dear Councillors and candidates,

London Cycling Campaign and Living Streets are urging you to support better walking and cycling in our borough.

The borough already has some of the best stats for ‘people who at least cycle occasionally’ in the whole of London, as well as a good modal share of cycling (at 7%), compared to many outer London boroughs. You may also have seen the recent data from TfL showing just how many journeys are walkable or cyclable, based on their distance.

For too long, we’ve focused the borough’s energies on making it easier to drive a car – we think it’s about time the focus became ‘easier to walk and cycle’. The ‘Liveable Neighbourhood’ ask from LCC and Living Streets is that we commit to a bid which does this. It’s all TfL money, so it’s not even something we need to pay for – but the only way we get the money is by showing real commitment.

To our thinking, almost as important as the fact that we don’t need to find this money ourselves in these tough times, is the strong emphasis from TfL that public consultation is crucial. The TfL Liveable Neighbourhoods plans include a specific allocation for public engagement, and for making the case for walking and cycling.

But as well as the Liveable Neighbourhoods bid, we’re asking you, as prospective councillors, to speak out about all the benefits of walking and cycling. We know from more than five years of consultations in this borough and across London that projects like this struggle badly if local councillors and officials don’t understand or don’t support measures for walking and cycling.

Great cycling facilities enable everyone to cycle, so please take the time to look at the documents LCC and LN have prepared, and think about how you can help make our borough a better place for everyone.

Borough Coordinator, Richmond Cycling

Rides for Explorers : Surrey Heathland : Sunday 8th April


Meet Twickeham Riverside by Eel Pie island bridge 10.30.

We head up the Thames to Chertsey  and then up into the hills as far as Chobham Common. We have lunch at the “Hangar Cafe” at Fairoaks Airport before enjoying a downhill section to Weybridge and so home.

35 miles and a bit hilly.


Nine of us met up on a cloudy Twickenham Riverside. By the time we were going through Hampton the rain started and continual light rain fell on us essentially all day. To be positive the rain washed out any pollution out of the atmosphere and the fresh air and exercise were a lot better than sitting indoors looking gloomily out at the rain.

The Hangar cafe provided excellent coffee and sandwiches and yummy cakes. We didn’t hang about and were back in Twickenham by 2.30.