Richmond Rides : Brockwell Park Picnic ; SW London Uprising Festival

Saturday 31st August

We meet a group from Kingston on the Ham Side of Teddington Lock at 9.50 and head across Richmond Park , crossing Wimbledon Park, Wandsworth Common, and Clapham Common aiming to get to Brockwell Park by 12. Bring a picnic.

12 miles each way quite hilly.

Route

SW London Uprising Festival

I will be heading back about 2 – anyone is welcome to join me. Alternatively bring a physical or electronic map and make your own way. Clapham Junction is not far away for rail assistance back to our area.

In a year’s time this is going to look very different.

We attended the Active Travel Advisory Group on 6 June 2019 , and there are lots of important updates …

Strawberry Vale is going to get a cycle lane

One of our key borough routes is going to get a proper bi-directional cycle lane, providing protected cycling along its length. This is a huge change, and it’s such an important route the council sounds like it has secured TfL funding.

Kew Road is (probably!) going to get a cycle lane (which isn’t a car park)

You know that row of parking on the Kew Road, over the cycle lane? Well the parking is going to give up to a cycle lane – the council told us on Thursday that Kew Road will get a cycle lane on both sides. Designs are still in progress, and it looks like the initial implementation won’t go all the way to Kew Bridge, but we think this is an important start.

Bikehangars are going to be sprouting like dandelions

Sometime in the next month, we’re going to see a consultation for thirty bikehangars. We know not all will be approved, but this means by Christmas the borough could have a dozen cycle hangars installed.

Low traffic neighbourhoods are go

Two areas – Burtons Road and the East Sheen / Palmerston Road area are under consideration for low traffic neighbourhoods. Burtons Road is currently in consultation, and there was a meeting with councillors and officials for East Sheen on 10 June.

We think other areas could benefit from these – see the London Cycling / Living Streets briefing here: https://lcc.org.uk/articles/low-traffic-neighbourhoods-briefing-documents-launch

School streets are also go (unless you’re trying to drive down them!)

Four schools – St Stephens, Barnes, Stanley and Orleans Park – are on course to get ‘School Streets’. What’s that? More here – http://schoolstreets.org.uk/ – but basically it’s about setting our schools and their roads up to really make it the obvious choice to walk and cycle there, and to make driving the option you only take if you really, really need to.

Liveable Neighbourhoods

Our next ‘Liveable Neighbourhoods’ bid is likely to be for Barnes and for Ham (possibility of two bids, rather than one). We’ll be thinking about it over the summer, but it’s worth everyone asking “What would be transformational in my neighbourhood?”

Rolling log on consultations and surveys on (active) travel in Richmond

Rolling log on consultations and surveys on (active) travel in Richmond

Upcoming deadlines

Royal Parks Movement Strategy (deadline: 14 July 2019)

Details and Survey

Richmond Council and Hammersmith Bridge (deadline: 16 July 2019)

Details and Survey

Richmond Council and Burtons Road area: proposed traffic-reducing measures (deadline: 26 July 2019)

Details and Consultation

TFL and changes to the local bus network following closure of Hammersmith Bridge to motor traffic (deadline: 1 October 2019)

Details and Consultation

List of all Richmond Council consultations

All the consultations are here.

How lawless is our borough?

One of our members has provided his experiences after acquiring a cycle camera and reporting traffic incidents to the Met Police’s Traffic Prosecution Services (TPS, aka Traffic Offence Report Team) over the course of a year.

Dangerous pass in TwickenhamOf 160 reports submitted in the year since April 2018, 59 resulted in Notices of Intended Prosecution (NIPs) being sent to the registered keeper of the vehicle concerned. Of these, four registered keepers failed to comply with their legal obligation to provide details of the driver of the vehicle at the time of the incident and are consequently facing legal proceedings for this offence. One such has already resulted in a £660 fine, £166 costs and six points on the owner’s licence.

Of the other 55 NIPs, no notice of what resulted has been received. A further 14 registered keepers received a letter informing them that an allegation had been made but that no action would be taken.

The bulk of the NIPs were for unsafe overtaking, usually too close to the cyclist, sometimes also too close to oncoming traffic, a few for overtaking on a bend including one that narrowly avoided a collision with oncoming traffic.

Eight were for overtaking on, or on the approach to, a pedestrian crossing, including when pedestrians have been crossing or about to cross.

Three were for driving on the footway, three more for failing to stop at a zebra crossing when our member was walking his bike across.

One (among several reported) was for failing to give way at a junction, one for driving in and then stopping in a contraflow cycle lane, one for turning right without observing the lane markings (ie cutting the corner and narrowly avoiding colliding with our member), and one for an illegal right turn.

Two reports received no response at all.

The most reports submitted by our member in a day was four, this on three occasions. In one such, all four incidents took place within twenty minutes on relatively quiet roads; three resulted in NIPs, the other in a letter.

Our member calculates that a NIP has been issued for roughly every five hours of his cycling and an incident worthy of report has occurred every two hours.

Certainly the TPS have a difficult job. They have to decide whether a prosecution is likely to be successful, not simply whether the driving might be considered  poor, careless or dangerous, and they do not have much time to do so. Judging by the incident case numbers, reports are received every few minutes.

However, his impression is that they do not always read the reports closely and sometimes assume cyclists are reporting close passing when they are  actually reporting something else. Very similar incidents often receive very different responses.

Nonethless, any camera-equipped cyclist is urged to make reports whenever appropriate in the hope that greater numbers of drivers may be encouraged to think carefully about their driving, their responsibilities, and the possible effects of their actions when on the road.

AGM Agenda – 17 April

8 PM, WEDNESDAY 17th APRIL, 2019
to be held at the “Old Ship” pub, 3 King Street, Richmond

AGENDA

  1. Apologies for absence
  2. Annual report from the Co-ordinator on the past year’s activities.
  3. Treasurer’s report
  4. Report from the Rides Officer
  5. Election of Officers :-
    Co-ordinator
    Treasurer
    Secretary
    Rides Officer
    Any others to serve on the Committee, eg Chairman, LCC Liaison Officer
  6. Review of current activities and prioritisation for the coming year, including (a) May Fair 10/11 May, and (b) Bike Week 8/16 June.
  7. Any other business

Cycling on the pavement …

With 7% of journeys made by bike and around a third of the population using a cycle of some description once a month or more, Richmond has some of the best cycling stats in outer London.

Spotted in Hampton, via Google Streetview

Spotted in Hampton, via Google Streetview

However, we get asked regularly about cycling on the pavement. The law is clear, you shouldn’t cycle on a pavement unless it is marked as shared use. That said, many shared routes are poorly sign-posted and the government has long recognised that there are many reasons people cycle on the pavement, ranging from things most people would find acceptable to the completely unacceptable.

Richmond Cycling Campaign doesn’t endorse cycling on the pavement but we understand why a lot of people do it and that’s why we’ve been talking to the South Richmond Neighbourhood Team Safer Pavements team (led by Alan Laird and with the support of Pam Fleming, and others) about gathering more information and looking at possible solutions.

Our view is that people cycle on the pavement because it feels safer than being on the road. Whether you’re cycling on your own or cycling with your family, the absence of proper cycling infrastructure in the borough causes many routes to be intimidating and unpleasant. We urge anyone who has chosen to cycle on the pavement or in shared use areas to show courtesy and consideration to pedestrians.

If you’ve experienced cycling on the pavement or if you do cycle on the pavement please contact us (info@richmondlcc.co.uk), or the South Richmond Neighbourhood Watch Safer Pavements team (richmondsaferpavements2018@gmail.com), with some more information, and we’ll try to collate what we hear.

What do you want transport money spent on? LIP3 response

The council is consulting on its “Local Implementation Plan” – £1.5m a year of transport spending for the next three years – and they have to make it good, to get the money from TfL.

The consultation is here and you can read the full document as a PDF link here.

Our final response is below – please have a look and take a moment to tell the council what you’re really interested in seeing the money being spent on.

This isn't what our transport spending should be supporting ..

This isn’t what our transport spending should be supporting ..

LIP3 Response

Richmond Cycling Campaign opposes the borough’s LIP3 submission. We have talked to both officers and councillors, and we believe that there is both the interest and the will to pursue what we would characterise as ‘proper’ walking and cycling for our borough.

The LIP acknowledges the comparatively high levels of walking and cycling which Richmond enjoys, compared to other outer London boroughs. However, it does not provide sufficient detail or strategy to show how the borough will deliver the hoped-for improvements in walking, cycling and public transport use.

We welcome the borough’s objectives of making safe, active travel an option for everyone. We also support the aspirations to make public transport better, and the proposals for the enablers around these activities.

More Detailed Ambitions

Richmond Cycling Campaign believes that the LIP – as a document which sets out our strategy not only for the next three years, but for the further future – lacks sufficient detail for goals, and lacks a strategic network plan.

We would like to see clear, measurable plans, for example: :
• A commitment that every one way in the borough will either have a contraflow, or will have been assessed and then agreed not to be appropriate
• Every school to either have a school street, or a set of interventions agreed with parents and school
• Every doctors’ surgery to have bicycle parking that is at least as close as the nearest car parking. (This should be the same for every public facility in the borough.)
• A cargo and electric bike library managed by the council, so that residents can trial these, but also so that they can hire them, like Camden and others
• Creation of a full borough cycling plan and map, and an inventory of all requests for stands, parking, cycle routes, pavement repairs, etc., publicly available
• A clear plan built in this year’s LIP for a dense network of cycle routes, which will be supported by work in subsequent years, so that by 2041 everyone can cycle safely from their home to any destination in the borough
• A comprehensive plan for traffic cells and liveable neighbourhoods across the borough, so that, wherever possible, people live on a road which isn’t used for through traffic
• Specific funding for an officer to support the bike library, school activities and cycling events, and to support parking planning
• Traffic management plans for the new developments around the borough, to ensure they aren’t just delivering more traffic (Mortlake Brewery, for example)
• Conversion every bus stop in the borough for accessibility
• Making every town centre accessible by walking and cycling, including specific commitments on the number and density of crossing points
• Use the Strategic Cycling Analysis as the primary source of route planning
• Choose an area as a low traffic neighbourhood
• Want to engage properly with Bike Week, and other activities like this: car free day, etc.

While we recognise that both officer time and budgets are highly constrained, we believe that the borough should state its ambition for these things, so that we have a delivery plan to aim for: a plan which lists our bus stops, our schools, our doctors’ surgeries, and our routes, and prioritises them, is something we can constantly strive to achieve, and constantly measure against.

ULEZ

We would like to propose that the borough seeks funds to be part of the Ultra-Low Emissions Zone. The current plans will cut the borough in half, with enforcement on one side but not the other. If cutting emissions is good enough for central London, it should be good enough for us, and we believe that the council should ask TfL to explore ways to bring the whole of the council area into ULEZ.

Equality Assessment

The Equality Assessment seems to miss an opportunity: by providing proper cycling and walking facilities, countries like the Netherlands and Denmark show that these projects are a substantial benefit especially to older people and minority groups. Studies have clearly shown that policies which prefer the motor car are effectively policies which act against equality goals – see the Sustainable Development Commissions’ “Fairness in a Car-Dependent Society.”

We believe that the Equality Assessment is an opportunity for the council to shout loudly about how addressing the previous emphasis on driving is a significant step towards removing inequality in the borough. A robust LIP and associated policies is a clear signposting of such ambition.

Specific Comments

P13: “Borough objectives”
All of these are laudable, but generally lack specificity in how to achieve them, or how to understand how to achieve them
P13/14: too many of these also have ‘improve’ or ‘seek’ or similar: either we want to do these, or we don’t.

For example LBRUT will:
• Ensure every bus stop is accessible by 2041
• Provide pedestrian priority crossings at every junction in the borough
• Provide every primary school with safe, car-free access within an agreed radius
• Develop a zero-emission delivery pilot in one of the borough’s town centres by 2022
• …

P14 – major developments: the borough should not be accepting major developments without travel plans which provide genuine walking and cycling facilities which are better than those for driving.

“It is expected that by 2021, 15% of the population will be with 400m of the [strategic cycle] network”.

P15: the quietways map is not good enough as a plan for a strategic cycle network. Our plan should include not only these plans, but also all the SCA analysis, and whatever borough plans we have building on existing infrastructure to create a borough-wide network. The network should be accessible to all 8-80+ using segregation / filtering as appropriate.
At a minimum plans for the 2 SCA priority routes identified ( Twickenham -Teddingt on , Sheen-Putney) will be drawn up by the end of 2019.

P16: Ofo has withdrawn from the borough, so we probably need to recognise this somehow.

P18: Borough objectives. We should state that every one way street in the borough will be contraflow. Unless there is a compelling reason otherwise.

Bullet “healthy routes to schools” mentions ‘site lines’ – should probably be ‘sight lines’. Cycle routes should be at least to the standard of the Mayor’s Cycling Strategy
Can we commit here to School Streets for every school that wants them?

P19 appears to propose ‘education and training’ for walking. If we think we need to educate people to walk, we’ve failed.

P21 not clear how these figures make up a trajectory:
“Seek to minimise impact of level crossings on pedestrians and cyclists” doesn’t really offer anything: it’s a vague aspiration with no action attached to it. This is the kind of thing which could be specifically analysed as part of the planned expenditure.
P22, fig 9: how did we get to these as a trajectory? There’s no immediate activity which will encourage this.

P24: increasing permit prices for diesels is only going to be a partial fix, and in any case is likely to simply result in the borough providing an either direct or implied subsidy to those able to buy new cars, whilst not really providing any discouragement for csr ownership (if that is the goal).

P24 – borough objectives. These could also be clearer and more specific. We recognise that not all of this can be done at once, but we want a ‘menu’ of activity so that the council is constantly pursuing useful, agreed plans.

P25: Clean and green. Is there anyway we can extend the ULEZ to our borough, too? If TfL is setting this up, why not ask for its extension, with borough support?

P29: aiming for all bus stops to be accessible. Can this be identified somewhere as a specific target?

P29: accessibility of train stations. Need to also list our stations, and have a plan.

P32: sustainable development … we should identify that the challenge here is making developers write proper travel plans which put walking and cycling first.

P33 – transport investment. Perhaps a good thing to spend money on would be to understand capacity of transport in the borough: for example, how does it work if we build new developments which feed commuters into the train services into central London, like Mortlake or North Sheen? Should we be looking to get more people to fast service stations like Richmond?

P34: we should identify the major projects we have, and say what we think we need from them, and what the concerns are.

P37: Speed indicator devices are rotated, but no data is gathered from them, which makes them a little bit of a sticking plaster.

P37: Mentions a study to improve walking and cycling in the south west. Not clear what this study is – is it referenced in the spending plans?

P43: We should be considering whether a work place parking levy is an appropriate measure to take.

P45: missing text “Pedestrian and cycle bridge connecting …” Presumably Twickenham and Ham.

P50: the biggest risk is that the lack of specifics in the plan mean we won’t deliver anything.

P55: local targets. It is quite unacceptable to have a target of 300 EV charging points, but just 100 bicycle stands.

P56 onwards: Table ST07 should have current values, and targets for interim years, too.
P59: outcome 5 – a good public transport experience. Increasing ridership on public transport is a good thing, but we must recognise that this should not be at the expense of walking and cycling numbers. We should state explicitly that increasing public transport use can only come from discouraging ( sorry but if we want modal shift this has to happen) private car journeys.

P57 outcome 1 : The borough will engage with TfL to suggest and facilitate the spread into the borough of the London cycle network. 60: Outcome 9. “Active, efficient and sustainable transport will be the best option in new developments. “ We should identify all current developments, and have a specific plan about how all new developments will have this baked in. The proposed new site for Turing House School will be an exemplar for this approach.

p61 : schemes.
A307 Kew corridor. This needs a cycle lane. Badly. This proposal just puts off doing anything.
“Borough wide collision investigation”. What will this tell us? Looks like 5k pa which won’t lead to anything.

A310 again 280K on a study. For free we have substandard cycle lanes hard up against parked cars and giving up at Waldegrave Rd junction. Safe for cycling would be a 2 way segregated track on the east side. If too financially / politically expensive promote alternative route.

P62
Future safety schemes. Looks like 191k of vagueness.
It is not quite clear why stations need 50k studies: would it not be preferable to do one station at a time, and get it done?
Barnes High St neighbourhood scheme. This is £260k over three years for a place which is a traffic sewer. This money is highly likely to be wasted if there is no traffic plan associated to it, and no cycling plan.

 

An open letter to Richmond Schools

Dear Local Schools

Please support Richmond Council’s 20mph consultation today.

Assen (NL) school run, courtesy David Hembrow

Assen (NL) school run – could Richmond upon Thames be like this?

Traffic speed is a major cause of collisions on our streets, and faster speeds mean worse collisions – the evidence on this is very clear. We also know that children under 15 are particularly vulnerable as they can’t detect vehicles approaching at speeds greater than 20mph1. For every 1mph speed reduction, the risk of crashes drops 6% 2, and the risk of injury with it.

Our roads don’t feel safe enough for many parents to feel safe with their kids walking, scooting or cycling to school. Kids love being active, and evidence shows walking, cycling and scooting to school makes them more alert, as well as boosting their mood, and helping them maintain a healthy weight and grow stronger3. Supporting 20mph in Richmond would be a big help in making our streets feel and be safer, enabling more of us to ditch the car on the school run.

So we need you, your families and staff to reply to this consultation – cos there are lots of drivers in Richmond who don’t want to slow down, and don’t, it seems, care about our children’s  safety or the air they breathe.

Perhaps you could share a note from us in your school newsletter, mention the consultation at assembly, or ask your PTA to share something with your parents and carers and help drive (ahem) home the message we need this change.

You can see the council consultation here: https://richmond.gov.uk/20mph

Our call to action is here: http://www.richmondlcc.co.uk/2018/11/11/lets-go-20/

Many thanks,

Borough Coordinator

Richmond Cycling Campaign

We campaign for our borough to be a place where everyone can cycle safely

  1. http://roadsafetygb.org.uk/news/speeds-greater-than-20mph-pose-crossing-risk-for-children/
  2. https://www.rospa.com/rospaweb/docs/advice-services/road-safety/drivers/inappropriate-speed.pdf
  3. https://www.sustrans.org.uk/sites/default/files/file_content_type/sustransinfosheet_benefits_activetravel_youngpeople_web_0.pdf