Hampton Court Palace would prefer you to drive, rather than cycle.

While the rest of London is making real efforts to be nicer for cycling, Hampton Court Palace seems to think that cycling is more of a danger to its visitors than driving.

One of our members has asked why it is possible to drive into the palace (to access the car park), and yet if you arrive by bicycle, you’re forced to dismount at the gates. We were very surprised to learn that:

As cars can be heard they are considered less of a risk to the general public than cyclists.

You might be asking ‘It’s not a hardship to push your bike, is it?” and for many people, it’s fine. But if you’re a small child, or if you have any sort of mobility impairment, or if your bike is heavy or unwieldy, then you definitely don’t want to be pushing that bike.

So we also asked why cycling might not be permitted on the paved areas where driving is allowed, they responded:

[that cyclists] could potentially damage the grass and garden areas.

If this were a completely pedestrianised area, with no motor traffic, then we might have some sympathy for the view of Historic Royal Palaces on this one, but they’ve not even put cycle racks anywhere near the entrance, nor made any other particular concessions to encourage people to cycle instead of drive, so we’re asking them to fix this bizarre policy pronouncement.

You can drive a ton of motor car in, but please don't endanger us with your bicycle.

You can drive a ton of motor car in, but please don’t endanger us with your bicycle.

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A big car park … no cycling. Can you see any irony here?

Ride for Explorers – Olympic Park via the new CSHs. Sunday 8th May

Meet Barnes Green by the pond 10.30.

We head over Hammersmith Bridge and make our way to Hyde Park the Mall and probably the Strand to join the updated Cycle Superhighway 2 towards Bow before diverting through Victoria Park to to Olympic Park for lunch – probably in the velodrome.

On the way home we cut across to the improved CSH 3 to Tower Gateway where we get onto the East-West superhighway to Westminster and so back to Barnes.

Just 2 of us met up at Barnes. The Superhigways are now open and reasonably well used on a Sunday – lots of “Boris Bikes”.  Pity we don’t get to see one in Richmond. The velodrome cafe does provide sandwiches.

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Hammersmith Gyratory Upgrade

Hammersmith-gyratory-web

Improvements are afoot at one of the key gateways into the borough.  Please take a moment to respond to tfl’s consultation to show your support.  Copy our response below or write your own.   In general the proposals look good, but as always there is room to make them better.  How it links into our borough has not been fully thought through.  CLOSES on 15th March

https://consultations.tfl.gov.uk/roads/hammersmith-gyratory/consult_view

RICHMOND CYCLING CAMPAIGN

RESPONSE TO THE HAMMERSMITH GYRATORY CONSULTATION

We have read and fully support the erudite comments submitted by John Griffiths on behalf of the Hammersmith & Fulham Cycling Campaign.

In addition, we should like to make the following points :­

1 The importance should be recognised of traffic flows over Hammersmith Bridge and the dangers which such flows present to cyclists who, on the south side, can approach the bridge by an officially recommended “Quietway”.

2 Nothing is said about the timing of the implementation of the proposals under consultation, which may be critical in view of the planned closure of Hammersmith Bridge for major repair work later this year, and the resulting changes in traffic flows as drivers are forced to use Putney and Chiswick Bridges instead.

3 While concentration on improving the west ­to­ east route for cyclists, along Street and the north side of the gyratory system may have some benefits in terms of cyclists’ speed and safety, if successfully implemented (which is open to some in view of H&F CC’s comments), there are intrinsically greater dangers to cyclists elsewhere in the gyratory system, particularly for those heading south along the eastbound side and then wishing to turn right in order to access Hammersmith Bridge Road. Here they have to thread their way through fast­moving motor traffic both to their right and their left.

 

Kingston Mini Holland

Kingston our neighbour was awarded 30 million pounds for its mini holland scheme.  It has since been branded ‘Go Development’ details are here.  Some quite impressive schemes I think you will agree.   We need to help our friends in Kingston ensure that it is executed well so we’ll keep you posted here of consultations or progress.  A successful mini holland will help us all when we visit Kingston and will also demonstrate to Richmond how cycling can be a great transport choice when the infrastructure is right.

First task is to take the Wheatfield Way Survey and ask for cycle tracks that are separate from motor traffic.

Kingston station plaza proposals mini-Holland.JPG-pwrt3

Sign For Cycling

Our new campaign or the 2016 Mayoral elections.  Details below:

On 5 May 2016 Londoners will vote for their next mayor. We want to build on the success of Love London Go Dutch and Space for Cycling to ensure that London’s next Mayor commits to, and delivers, key improvements that will continue to accelerate the growth in cycling and reduce road danger for vulnerable road users like pedestrians and cyclists.

There is a huge risk that London’s next Mayor will not commit to making our streets safe and inviting for cycling. There is a risk that the political momentum from the current Mayor, which has given us the Cycle Superhighways and mini Holland programmes, will come to a halt. So, we are preparing the ground for our biggest campaign yet! London has a crucial window of opportunity to ensure that London’s next Mayor is as committed to making our streets safe and inviting for cycling. Will you join us?

We will be launching our ‘Sign for Cycling’ Mayoral campaign early in 2016. Please keep an eye on our website for details or sign up to our Newsletter to make sure you’re the first to know when we launch!

What will we be calling for?

We will call on all mayoral candidates to commit to creating space for cycling across London so people of all ages and abilities can choose to cycle for their journeys, through:

  • More protected space for cycling on main roads and at junctions
  • Mini Hollands: a Dutch style town centre in every borough
  • An end to lorry danger

Who is standing for election?

The mayoral candidate for each party have been selected:

  • Conservative Party – Zac Goldsmith
  • Green Party – Sian Berry
  • Labour Party – Sadiq Khan
  • Liberal Democrats – Caroline Pidgeon
  • UKIP – Peter Whittle
  • Independent – Paul Tavares
  • Independent – Siobhan Benita
  • Independent – Rosalind Readhead
  • Independent – Yanek Zylinski
  • National Liberal Party – Upkar Singh Rai
  • Respect – George Galloway
  • Something New – Lindsey Garrett
  • Women’s Equality Party – Sophie Walker

Find out more about the candidates and what they have to say about cycling.

Get involved!

We’re looking for teams of volunteers to help us make sure our campaign is as successful as possible. There’s plenty of ways to get involved depending on what sort of time you have. Find out more

Email: getinvolved@lcc.org.uk  

Who would like secure bicycle parking?

Thanks to one of our members working closely with the council’s cycling officer Richmond should be getting its first cycle hangar.

2013.08.09-LB-Hackney-Mowll-St-1-6-Cleveland-House

The Bikehangar is an award-winning popular design for outdoor sites offering a safe and effective way to protect bikes from tough weather conditions and theft where outdoor storage space is limited.  They are multiplying quickly in London’s cycle friendly boroughs. The Bikehangar can securely store up to six bicycles, occupying only half of a parking space.

The Lambeth BikehangarIf you want one on your street register your interest with cyclehoop, let us know and write to the council’s bike officer. Carole.Crankshaw@richmond.gov.uk

 

 

 

 

 

Cycling Liaison Group – Time to Get Back to Basics?

The Cycling Liaison Group meets on 26th January at 7pm (details here). 

Delivering cycling on our borough really needs the council to work hard at it, so please come along if you can!

It’s been quite a while since we praised the tone of the new team, but also quite a while since very much happened. So this meeting we’ve got a bit of a shopping list of questions, and requests for information. 

Cycling Strategy

This one’s been brewing for over six months. Other boroughs have produced excellent strategies which reflect the importance and utility of good cycling to a borough [Sutton? Others] And a recent consultation on borough policies suggest that the new cycling strategy is going to include a proposed route network. 

Now having a strategy is really important, and we’d really like to see one that has some real meat. But we shouldn’t be waiting for it before we get on with things. 

Twickenham Riverside

The new plans for the Riverside don’t appear to have been very well received, based on some of the comments we saw. And it is rubbish for cycling. It really isn’t clear why the council is still putting together proposals that spend more time and space talking about parking cars than anything to do with cycling. 

We’ll be asking why this is the case: if the council honestly thinks that active travel should be a priority, then it needs to plan for this in the beginning of all these consultations, and not leave it as an afterthought. 

Parking

There’s already ample evidence that the borough lacks sufficient cycle parking. From Kew Gardens to Richmond Park, from Richmond town centre to Twickenham and Whitton, there aren’t enough spaces to park bikes. Even if you do decide to go by bike, your chances of finding somewhere safe and unobstructed to park can be terrible.

We’ll be asking why parking is not just an ongoing activity – it’s not like it’s that hard to identify where it’s needed. After all, we’ve given the council enough suggestions in the past. 

(And we’ll also be asking why bike parking isn’t in every new plan that comes out of the council, and always gets offered “will be included in detailed planning”.)

Money

We know the council doesn’t like spending its own money on cycling – it has to ask TfL for this (through thing like the LIP programme). Instead, councillors keep trying to voncince us that money spent on roads maintenance has a substantial benefit for cycling.

While this is true – because no-one likes cycling through potholes – we should be very clear that not a single road in Richmond has been resurfaced or repaired just to make cycling nicer.

Trials

We keep asking the council if they’re going to try any trials. Other boroughs have demonstrated clearly – as at Tavistock Place [others] that for a small amount of money it’s possible to trial new ideas, to establish whether they’re going to be beneficial for the borough. Indeed, two years ago, Richmond was lined up to try an ‘all ways green’ junction. Which still hasn’t happened. 

What’s Going On?

Every time the council touches a road or a pavement, that’s a chance to do something to make the borough a better place to be on a bike. Whether it’s fixing a dropped kerb, improving an advanced stop line, or making a corner more forgiving. Yet we’re passing up these opportunities again and again. 

Quiet Routes

This isn’t one we asked about directly, but now features in their agenda. We suggested some detailed material for this a while ago, so we’ll be interested to see what the council has managed to put together.

And just for fun, we’ve asked the council if they can tell us what they think they’ve done for cycling in the last five years. Because we don’t think it’s very much … a few cycle stands, some new cans of Dulux on re-surfaced roads …