Cycle parking should be standard!

We think any new building needs to have secure, sheltered cycle parking as standard. And providing parking for cycling should be a key element of sustainable design.


It should be more like this!

But sadly the new proposed ‘sustainable construction checklist‘ mentions cycling in only the vaguest terms.

We’ll be checking the proposed new ‘London Cycle Design Standards’ (see here and this pdf) and asking the council what they’re going to put in … The London Plan includes specific standards for cycle parking (see this article) and we’d like to see these included in our standards.

Please get in touch with us or your councillors if you want any new build in the borough to have proper parking!

Heath Road Consultation … Not Exactly Cycling for 8 to 80 …

Heath Road is up for some cycling improvements (see here), but we’re not sure they’re going to make much difference.  Consultation close 5th July – please fill it in to make cycling’s voice loud!

bus stop cycling

You can see from this image:

  • The lane will be just 1.5m wide at some points
  • You’ll have to wait for the bus, or risk going round it
  • It’s not a mandatory lane, so anyone can drive in it and will probably also stop in it
  • There’s no separation from motor traffic

All of these are problems if the council wants more people to cycle, because they mean that this road will continue to look unpleasant for being on a bike, with neither actual nor perceived protection.

We would like to see ‘floating bus stops’ on this stretch.  Check out this elegant solution on Cycle Superhighway 2.

bus bypass

We think the London Cycle Design Standards (see here) need applying on this road, and we’d like the council to think again:  Please take the time to fill in the consultation, if you like you can use our recommended response below.   It doesn’t take many responses to influence things for the better!!

RCC would like for this scheme to go ahead, it is encouraging to see cyclists being considered on main roads.  However prior to implementation there should be a redesign as described below.   The proposal currently falls well short of modern cycle design standards and will do little to improve cycle safety or encourage those currently not confident enough to cycle onto their bicycles:


  • On roads with this volume of traffic and speeds of 30 mph, cycle lanes should be fully segregated.  RCC would like to see this scheme upgraded to semi segregation with Armadillos or traffic wands.  This should be coupled with a medium term vision to create a fully segregated cycle route on Heath Road.
  • Commingling cyclists with heavy vehicles in bus lanes should not be considered acceptable cycling infrastructure.  On this occasion as an intermediate solution it is acceptable to RCC, however to encourage new cyclists and improve the experience of existing cyclists a plan should be created to segregate those on bikes from buses and other traffic at this location
  • The section where cyclists are expected to pass parked cars should include enough space and road markings to ensure that cyclists are not riding in the ‘dooring’ zone.  Ideally the cycle path would run along the near side of the parked cars, the parked vehicles would provide some protection from the moving traffic, again space for opening doors is imperative.  One of the most common bicycle accidents is through being hit by opening car doors.
  • Careful design consideration must be given to cyclists crossing side roads, cyclists should be treated as main road traffic and be given priority over traffic emerging from the side road.  The cycle lanes should be continuous.
  • More thought needs to be given into the siting and design of bus stops.  Cyclists having to move out into traffic to overtake buses is poor design, bus stop bypasses should be included and bus stops should be relocated where there is not space to provide a bypass.
  • Include generous cycling parking at approximate 50 m intervals along the route.

In summary, it is good that cycling is being considered but note that if we as a borough are to get more people cycling for the ‘utility’ and simple journeys that will make a real difference to congestion and well-being routes like this:

  • need to be complete
  • can’t just give up at junctions
  • need to look attractive and safe


Getting serious about cycling.

it’s a real breakthrough to see schemes from Richmond Council which seriously consider cycling: Although only a short distance, this cycle lane on London Road (consultation here) reflects a step change in ambition and thought for transport that it is a real pleasure to see.



in particular, this design includes a cycle lane which has priority over the roads out crosses, meaning that a journey down here should not be the stop-start unpleasantness of the A316 route.

There are a number of problems with the proposal, however …

It’s going to be narrow – at just 2.5m wide for two lanes of cycling, anyone on the outside of this track could find cycling very tricky if there’s someone coming the other way.

If the cycle lane is on the current pavement, then the outside lane is not going to be completely usable. As well as the edge that no-one will want to cycle too close to,there will be a series of dropped kerbs for access, making the ride even less pleasant.

And the ‘treatment’ of the priority on the side roads could be improved. This is how the Dutch do it. (Picture courtesy of the Alternative Department of Transport and Google Maps.)


Getting to the lane if you’re heading from Twickenham outwards will also be less than convenient, because the main junction with Whitton Road includes no changes to make it easy to get across, with no cycle lane at all from the bridge until the proposed cycle lane.

Note also, on the Dutch design above, they’ve managed to sympathetically put in a cycle lane, walking, and driving, with space for all of them – including a lane on each side of the road, which would answer a lot of the issues we’ve identified.

Perhaps worst for this section, Cole Park Road has a different design to all the other junctions, which is going to be confusing and likely to lead to conflict.
londonrd2And even with the existing design, the lane just gives up, with cycling once again coming into direct conflict with walking. Since the council is already on the receiving end of complaints about cycling on pavements, encouraging this more can only seem a retrograde step.

Great Idea But …

This really is a welcome change, and we applaud the council for the implied change in emphasis and thought. However, routes like this:

  • need to be complete
  • can’t just give up at junctions
  • need to look attractive and safe

if we as a borough are to get more people cycling for the ‘utility’ and simple journeys that will make a real difference to congestion and well-being.

We think the council should have a cycle track on each side, give it priority over side roads – and give pedestrians priority at the same places – and continue the route all the way to the cycle lanes into Twickenham. If you agree, respond to their consultation here: 




Sandycombe Road – safety with paint and a bit of tarmac.

The council is consulting on fixing Sandycombe Road (see here), in an attempt to deal with safety and congestion concerns.

Can this fix Sandycombe Road?  Probably not.

Can this fix Sandycombe Road? Probably not.

Sadly the consultation seems mostly to be about painting, making it easier to drive up and down, and ignoring cycling or walking as options. Sandycombe Road is one of three separate routes that can get you from the A316 to Kew Bridge / the South Circular, but it’s also a way for lots of people to access their homes.

We think Sandycombe would benefit from:

  • Filtered permeability (see here). This would prevent people using the road as a rat run, but would allow buses to carry on using it, and maintain access for residents
  • 20mph. Many people don’t travel down here at much more than 20mph, but there are some who do, and this is one of the areas that made it very clear that it wanted speeds cut. We won’t see more people cycling on this road if speeds aren’t cut, especially as these designs will likely increase speeds
  • Enhanced traffic calming measures. The raised tables are a good start at this, but they are only a start – there are all sorts of other ways engineers have in their arsenal to calm traffic in an area like this

Frankly, it would also benefit from losing its designation as a ‘B’ road – no-one should be lead to Sandycombe Road because they think it’s a key arterial route.

The council designs – which add more pavement parking like this, at the expense of people choosing to walk – is likely to cost a lot of money for no benefit to cycling, and precious little to anyone else, we think.

Finally, did you know there are plans to build a primary school at the top of Sandycombe Road, on the Manor Circus roundabout? If this goes ahead, all bets are likely to be off for safe traffic or pleasant walking in this area. 

So please write to the council using their form (here), the engineer’s email (Lisa Fenn at or email us your comments and we’ll share them.

Please tell the council:

  1. Traffic volumes need to fall on Sandycombe Road
  2. Speeds need to fall on the road
  3. Through / non-local traffic should be discouraged
  4. More focus needs to be given in the designs to walking and cycling

And let us know your comments, below!


Come for a ride, Mr. Wells

Hello Jason,

We’d like to invite you to come out on a ride with Richmond Cycling. A few years ago, local paper the Richmond Magazine had a very unfortunate editorial. We invited the editor to come for a ride with us to understand cycling in the borough a bit better, and now we’d like to extend the same offer to you.

(Courtesy GB Cycling Embassy

How we’d like cycling to be (Courtesy GB Cycling Embassy

The cycle lane along Priory Lane is a terrible facility, but we understand why many people wouldn’t see that, so we’d welcome the opportunity to show you why we campaign so hard for proper facilities for cycling in the borough.


Richmond Cycling Campaign


More parking, please!

The council is soliciting ideas for more cycle parking, so we and our members are happy to oblige – though when you see pictures like this, it’s not hard to see where might be good locations!

This one is in central Richmond, just outside Whole Foods, and a number of member have complained of it being constantly full. But to add to this, members have suggested:

  • Homebase on Manor Road
  • Pretty much anywhere in Kew village
  • By the shops on Friars Stile Road
  • High Park Road Kew
  • Medical centre in Richmond
  • Richmond Green
  • Richmond Station
  • Kew Station – both sides
  • Mortlake Station
  • Kew Gardens – Victoria Gate and Elizabeth Gate

One way streets – an easy way to improve cycling.

In the City of London, virtually every one way street is two-way for cycling.

And we think it should be the same in Richmond. The addition of one-way cycling in Holly Road in Twickenham has demonstrated that we can do this in our borough, so we’ve put together a list of the roads where we think the council can implement this quickly and inexpensively.

You can see the details on this Cyclescape page, assembled by Richmond Cycling members – full of simple suggestions like “Can we cycle both ways round Richmond Green?”

Richmond Green Cyclescape proposalThe streets we’ve identified so far are:

  • Somerton Avenue @ Clifford
  • South Worple Way East End
  • Kingsway
  • Richmond Hill
  • Ormond Road
  • Paradise Road
  • George Street
  • Eton Street
  • Richmond Green
  • Grove Road
  • Park Road
  • Glebe Way
  • 1st Cross Road
  • Kew Station Approach
  • Wiggins Lane Ham
  • The Vineyard
  • Cumberland Road
  • Leybourne Park
  • Priests Bridge

17 June update

We’ve asked the council about these, and also added the following:

  • Clarence Street in Richmond.
  • Portland Terrace (and Richmond Green generally)
  • Quadrant Road / Duke St
  • King Street, Richmond
  • Nightingale Lane, Richmond

If you want to comment, you can do so on the Cyclescape threads, on this post, email us at, tell us on Facebook, or tweet us @richmondcycling.




Come and see us at the May Fair!

We’ll be at Richmond’s May Fair, on Saturday! (Come along from 10am – Richmond Green)

We’ve got a Brompton fold compo, Dr. Bike, lots of goodies from local bike shops, plus maps and all sorts of other things going on!

Thanks to local stores and businesses -



For all these brilliant gifts and prizes! Fair goodiesFair goodies





Come along to see what you can win, and support cycling in Richmond-upon-Thames.


What should we talk to the council about?

Boris hasn’t been doing a good job of spending the cycling budget, and we’d really like to know what the council’s doing with the money that it gets allocated for cycling. So we’re proposing a few items that could be discussed at the next Cycling Liaison Group.

We’ve been heavily and justifiably critical of the Cycling Liaison Group in the past, but things seem to have really turned a corner, so these are out suggestions of things that could be considered next meeting:

  1. Where’s the money?
    The council gets money each year from Transport for London, and various other bodies. In previous years we’ve seen a breakdown of where they money’s being spent. It would be good to see as clearer breakdown of what’s happening weith this year’s budget.
  2. 20mph …
    You many have seen tha TfL is going to set up a large section of central London as 20mph, to complement the 20mph zones in Islington, Camden and thre City of London. So we’d like to know: does TfL’s plan to move to 20mph on large stretches of key routes in London have any effect on the council’s policy on 20mph?
  3. All ways green
    We heard last year about plans to trial an ‘all ways green’ junction in the borough. Is this going ahead?
  4. New planning standards for parking
    Will these be implemented in the borough? If not, why not?
  5. We also heard there are going to be updated proposals for the route near Hampton Court. Is this in progress?
  6. Why are we still not making cycling and walking the most important and safest ways to get to school?
  7. Can we have more one way streets in the borough, and can they all have cycling both ways?

As you can see from this list, fixing cycling in a borough needs lots of things to happen. It’s really important that the council is building a proper cycling strategy, but it also needs to do all the little things that can be fixed on an ongoing basis – new school builds shouldn’t be going ahead without clear plans for walking and cycling there; new developments shouldn’t be approved unless they include secure, sheltered cycle parking; And, as we’ve seen recently, bridges could do with cycle gullies – we’re delighted to see this one turn up!

Councillors and council officials are clearly thinking much harder about cycling, compared to four years ago – our goal is to help them deliver on their promises as quickly as possible, so Richmond doesn’t fall behind the fine work that’s being done in other boroughs.

The CLG meets next on April 21st – see here for details.