RCC Newsletter – 19 April 2013

Once a month, we send out an email update on cycling in the Richmond Borough. If you’d like to sign up for these, contact us here to be first to hear the cycling news that affects you across the borough.

We also post the newsletters here on our website the following week. Read below and enjoy! Previous newsletters can be found here.


So the clocks have gone forward and long sunny evenings are finally with us after all that cold weather. Yet another bumper newsletter, hear about our ride (tomorrow) to discover a hidden borough gem and what we hope is a sea change towards cycling by the council. An update on our campaign push on cycling to school and a new tool to record all your niggles from your local routes. Enjoy and please do share with your cycling friends.

A great ride this weekend to take advantage of the better weather and explore hidden parts of the borough on your doorstep. Why not bring a friend who’d like to get out on their bike more.

A ‘Ride for Everyone‘ to explore the River Crane this Saturday 20 April. Discover a real hidden gem of the borough on this ride where you’ll get an opportunity to see some of the new cycle path that Hounslow council has added along the river. We’ll stop off for coffee at Kneller Gardens, back just after midday. Get yourself in the mood with this excellent article about the importance of the River Crane Corridor to the borough (and some interesting facts about it’s history) http://is.gd/ywfGJZ
Meet at Richmond Little Green (by Richmond Theatre) at 10.30am.
Details online – http://is.gd/KV0fqs

If you’re joining us, send Paul, our Rides Coordinator, an email at rides@richmondlcc.co.uk so we know you’re coming.

Have a look at our Rides Information page for more details on upcoming rides – http://is.gd/IxqE3S

On Sunday 12 May The Thames Bridge Bike Ride will be coming through the borough. The organisers are looking for volunteers to get involved helping out on the day – find out more online – http://is.gd/7ordkC

Monthly Meeting
Great turn out for Monday’s meeting and a couple of new faces came along to raise issues that we’re going to take forward and try to help resolve. Next month’s meeting is on Monday 13 May. Location details online – http://is.gd/eahg52

LCC Policy Forum Seminar Series
We had a big contingent of RCC members at the LCC Policy Forum seminar series launch on 8 April. The speaker was London’s new Cycling Commissioner (and Teddington cyclist!) Andrew Gilligan. General impression of the event was positive and Andrew demonstrates a real understanding of the issues and challenges, many of which we’ve faced here in the borough. The proof will be starting to see changes on the ground, and there’s evidence of that already in our dealings with Richmond Council recently. There’s an audio recording of the event online (http://is.gd/ahTrqE) and a write up by Danny Williams who chaired the event – http://is.gd/0a3ptl

These Policy Forums are open to anyone to attend – you can find out about the upcoming events and how to register at this site – http://is.gd/j1UyzQ

Cycling Liaison Group Meeting
The next meeting with the council is Wednesday 24 April at York House at 7pm. Anyone is welcome to turn out to hear what the council is doing for cycling. They’ll be discussing what the Mayor’s recent announcement on cycling means for the borough. Details and agenda online – http://is.gd/Vz9ZqN
Email us at campaign@richmondlcc.co.uk if you’re coming so we can fill you in on any background. Ahead of the meeting we sent the council a number of questions (http://is.gd/u27WJF) We’ve had a really positive response and we’ll update the post with details.

No new consultations affecting cycling this month on Council’s Consultation page (http://is.gd/JnijLg).

The changes to improve safety from the Teddington consultation (http://is.gd/wT88Fw) have been implemented and we’ll be keeping track of the impact.

Recently Upper Richmond Road West has been resurfaced and the cycle lanes painted back in their original locations. We followed up with the council and they informed us this was separate road improvement work from the safety improvements that went for consultation at the end of last year (http://is.gd/YPkAP8) and these are still to be implemented. Seems a shame they couldn’t have combined the works and saved some money. We’re following up with the council to find out the outcome of that consultation.

Twickenham Update
After some silence on the subject, we were invited to meet with council officers to discuss the current status of the Twickenham town centre changes. This was a really productive meeting and there was a real recognition of the need to incorporate cycling into the design. More details in this update on our website (http://is.gd/h5mscM), still work to do particularly at the junctions, but it is a far cry from the original proposals which would have seen no cycle provision except for additional cycle parking. A big thank you to everyone who has been involved in pushing for these changes. One thing we’re starting to see is the influence TfL is having in the background, hopefully a sign of the change coming off the back of the Mayor’s new cycling vision. Mean while local cyclist Mathieu has been helping us make a record of the current situation of the Twickenham cycle lanes – have a look at the video he shot http://vimeo.com/61451459

London Road Cycle Lane
Staying in Twickenham, the London Road cycle lane (which was originally going to be removed by the Twickenham town centre changes) is plagued my motorists who drive up it at busy times, intimidating and putting at risk those who choose to cycle on this important route. The lane is classified as a Mandatory Cycle Lane (which means it is mandatory for motorists to stay out of, not for cyclists to use) and a local Twickenham resident complained to the Police about it’s abuse, including by Police vehicles. Well, the Police responded and have now started to stop motorists who stray into the lane, a story that was picked up in the Richmond and Twickenham Times (http://is.gd/10eEEG), Twickenham blog Twickerati (http://is.gd/UPRQr6) as well as nationally by cycling websites (http://is.gd/hj1Dgb). The first two articles are worth reading for the comments alone! We would like to see the installation of ‘armadillos’ on the boundary of the lane to further reinforce the need for motorists to stay out (http://is.gd/WLgkTt) and this is something we’ll be taking to the council.

TfL Dangerous Junction Review
Last month we reported our disappointment that we were not being consulted on the three borough junctions (A316-London Road Roundabout; A205-Mortlake Road/Upper Richmond Road and A205-Sheen Lane) in TfL Top 100 dangerous junctions review in London http://is.gd/bWOOMO. Work had started on the A316- London Road Roundabout junction (http://is.gd/p4TBLH) and the A205-Mortlake Road/Upper Richmond Road junction review had been completed (you can see the outcome here complete with magic painted bikes in the middle of the road – http://is.gd/V23EIt) It turned out that the Junction review had been carried by a team without our local input. Fortunately (and after a few cross words!) we found out in time to get our foot in the door to review the third junction, A205-Sheen Lane and gave significant feedback (Draft proposals here, sadly likely Option 1 will be pushed through http://is.gd/c6AyCF). The impression is, though, that the outcome of these reviews is falling far short of the Mayor’s vision for cycling – minor improvements rather than real change. We’ll continue to watch this and also other TfL managed junctions including Chalker’s Corner.

Cycling to School
The working group running the campaign on cycling to school is busy looking at what the local barriers are. So far we have had discussions with LBRUT to understand their role promoting school travel planning, and had contact with Sustrans. We have also mapped all state schools in LBRUT onto the CycleStreets cycling route planner system, and are in process of entering all nursery schools and private schools in the borough. If your kids do bike to school or you are considering it – why not check out your route here at http://richmond.cyclestreets.net – you may be surprised to find a quiet route that you hadn’t considered. Watch out for more on “bike to school” soon.” We believe this campaign benefits everyone. A well designed route that is safe for a 10 year old to cycle to school is safe enough for ALL cyclists, of any level of ability to negotiate – without the need for nerves of steel.

As ever, if you’re a local cycling mummy or daddy (or aunt, uncle, grandad or grandmum!) and would like to get involved get in touch – campaign@richmondlcc.co.uk

An interesting article on what’s stopping kids cycling to school http://is.gd/pCOig5 and British Cycling have asked for cycling to be added to the national curriculum http://is.gd/QKtmKf

London Cycling Campaign’s Safer Lorries Campaign
The council seems somewhat upset that LCC have put them in red http://is.gd/LTgfpT and are disagreeing with LCC’s assertions. We’re working with both the council and LCC to get to the bottom of what the real situation is but it is good that the council now has a page on their website outlining what they are doing with regards to lorries and cycle safety (http://is.gd/QxIbkf).

We’ve been working with this new tool developed by Cambridge Cycling Campaign for a number of months and we’re starting to use it in our campaigning. Register, look through your area for any issues already raised and you can add your comments, or raise new issues along with a photo. We’ve started to populate the system and we’re going to be using it for recording targeted issues with the council (e.g. one way streets that could be turned into contra flows) so have a look. We automatically receive an email any time an issue is raised or discussed in the borough so they all get read. Here’s the link to get started – http://www.cyclescape.org/

Separately we’re also cataloguing the existing cycle parking across the borough so that it appears on our local cycle route planner – http://richmond.cyclestreets.net If you know of stands in your area that are not currently marked, let us know and we’ll get them added (or if you’re feeling more adventurous, record them yourself on Open Cycle Map – http://www.opencyclemap.org/

Cycle Budget
So, how much does the council spend on cycling? Despite throwing certain numbers about previously when challenge about a lack of investment, it turns out they don’t know – http://is.gd/F7hr96

Maintenance Workshops
The longer nights are bringing more and more along to our popular work shops. Everyone and all bike types are welcome and no appointment is necessary. Come and learn a few tips and tricks to use at home. It’s all free but donations as always welcome to cover our costs – http://is.gd/oKpKQW:

Mortlake – The Old Bakery – 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month 19:00-21:00
Location – http://wp.me/pSDFw-4X
Next dates are 25 April and 9 May

Twickenham – All Hallows Church, – 4th Wednesday of the month 19:00-21:00
Location – http://wp.me/pSDFw-4U
Next date is 24 April

Ham – Ham Youth Centre – every other Saturday 10:00-12:00
Location – http://wp.me/pSDFw-14t
Next dates are 27 April and 11 May

Bike Security
We’re continuing to work with the police to increase awareness on bike theft. Always good to hear of someone’s pride and joy being returned safe and sound after having it marked. http://is.gd/Msw5Sw The Police run regular cycle marking events or can contact them and they’ll come to you for free. Details of your local Safer Neighbourhood team online (http://is.gd/Z0cKQ2) and have a look at our cycle theft advice page – http://is.gd/YmD7HB

Rollapaluza Racing
Worth going along just to find out what it is! Action Bikes are running an event at their shop as part of the Whitton St George’s Day Celebrations on 20 April with all profits going to Bikes for Africa – http://is.gd/9joRgT

Better by Bike
More interesting discussions from the Freakonomics team on why free parking isn’t free – http://is.gd/7i0r2C

We now have over 800 people in the borough who receive our monthly newsletter and we really appreciate all the feedback we get. You don’t need to be a member of LCC to get the newsletter so why not forward on to your friends who might like to sign up to get it.

And Finally…
Stuck for a bike for the school run? Maybe this is the answer – http://is.gd/Obifdu

Thanks for reading and keep cycling. Feel free to pass this email on to anyone who may benefit and don’t hesitate to get in touch through info@richmondlcc.co.uk to help make the borough a nicer and safer place to live and cycle. You can see our list of cycling events in the borough on our online calendar: http://www.richmondlcc.co.uk/category/events and if you’ve missed any of our newsletters, they are all online – http://www.richmondlcc.co.uk/category/newsletters

Richmond Cycling Campaign
web – http://www.richmondlcc.co.uk
twitter – http://twitter.com/richmondcycling
facebook – http://facebook.com/richmondcycling