Marksbury Avenue / A316 Consultation.

 

Richmond Cycling Campaign welcomes the removal of the pointless ‘Cyclists Dismount’ signs at the Marksbury Avenue crossing of the A316, but we’d really like to see some other changes in the current TfL Consultation

Planned changes at Marksbury Avenue / A316 junction.

Planned changes at Marksbury Avenue / A316 junction..

The crossing is nicer

The new design improves the crossing, but we think it could be better: why not allow pedestrians to cross the whole road at once, rather than have to wait for up to several minutes to make two separate crossings?

Removal of the guardrails could accompany this change: if we are worried about pedestrian safety on this road, the best way to fix it is with much more rigorous enforcement of the speed limits.

How does It Join Up?

On the south side of this junction is a cycle lane which should be connected to the crossing. Instead of the minor changes in paving, the opportunity should be taken to repeat the design of Elsinore Way. This would mean that the cycle lane would have priority at this minor road, and would become a more attractive, useful place to cycle.

Elsinore Way will get priority for cycling.

Elsinore Way will get priority for cycling.

More Joining Up

Just south of here is Somerton Road, and a network of quieter residential roads. These could all be part of a wider upgrading of routes to allow cycling both ways on the one way street.

Signing It

Despite the welcome removal of the ‘Cyclists Dismount’ signs, the only other sign changes are more ‘no cycling’ signs at precisely the place where most people will prefer to cycle. No opportunity has been take to improve the signing to key local destinations or other cycle routes. (Such as North Sheen station, Kew Gardens station, and into Richmond.)

It is Richmond Cycling’s strong proposal that this should be a straight through crossing for pedestrians with a single light phase, and that serious consideration is offered to the improvement of the connected cycling facilities.

Please respond to the consultation via their email consultations@tfl.gov.uk or using the form on their consultations page

Russell School Consultation

Richmond Council is planning to rebuild and expand the Russell and Strathmore Schools in Petersham, but has no clear plans about the impact on traffic in the surrounding area.

Have you say! Make an objection here. Although the deadline of Wednesday 18th February has passed, it is believed that they submissions will be accepted until March.

Here are some ideas on what you might say to the Council.

Richmond Cycling welcomes the re-building and improving of the school facilities, in order to ensure that it is fit for the 21st Century, and the changing needs faced by schools and their children. But we want to make sure the Council does it right, and considers the surrounding infrastructure.

Richmond Cycling’s view is that:

1. Any re-development needs to include proper, complete provision for active travel. It should be a requirement that it is safe and pleasant to access the school by foot, scooter and bicycle, as the primary modes of transport.

2. The potential expansion of the school needs to take into account the local community: if the area already faces significant traffic issues with the present volume of pupils, this will only get worse with more pupils.

Active travel can significantly reduce the impact of traffic on the local area, by cutting congestion and noise pollution, and making it a safer place through lower traffic volumes.

 

Rides for Explorers – The Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

12th April ; meeting Richmond Little Green 10.15.

Some years ago we went to watch the construction. The site has been landscaped and there is a good cafe

Olympic PoolOlympic Velodrome

 

 

 

 

 

 

We ride up through Central London -  quite fun with low Sunday traffic -  and plug into CS2 but turn off before the Bow Roundabout via Victoria Park to the Olympic Park. After lunch and a tour of the traffic-free park we return over the Green Bridge and SC3. About 37 miles.

Route

Please let me know if you are thinking of coming;  Paul : rides@richmondlcc.co.uk

Rides for Everyone – Coffee at the Palace -Saturday 21st March

Meet Mortlake Green by the Station 10.15

We cycle by the Thames all the way down to Putney Bridge which we cross to Bishop’s Park and a break at the cafe in Fulham Palace. Return via the Wetland Centre and a glimpse at the “Arab tent” tomb of the explorer Richard Burton. 8 miles and flat so definitely a ride for everyone. – back about 12.

Route

Putting our routes onto Skyride does seem to attract more interest. We had 8 riders of a wide range of ages despite a chilly wind. The Drawing Room Cafe at the Palace provided welcome refreshment and we emerged into (short lived) sunshine.

mortlake 003a

Boston 013

 

 

 

 

Route: Richmond Park Gate to Richmond Bridge

A perennial complaint has been about cyclists using the footway to descend Richmond Hill against the one-way system. We have argued that the legitimate route which has the benefit of filtered permeability P1010453a

has lost many of its signposts so cyclists are using the obvious route for fear of getting lost. Many of the signs have now been restored (Thank you Richmond Council)

P1010447aP1010450a

 

 

 

 

However, in the process, the Castle Yard cut through has been deleted so that cyclists are sent right down to congested Paradise Rd which we are not happy about. The RCC rides rep had a meeting with a council engineer discussing where signing is still not clear and we came up with a route using a contra-flow in Ormond Rd. To avoid head-to-head confrontations the engineer suggested that the carriageway should be raised level with the footway allowing cyclists to move to the side should they meet a (rare) vehicle coming the other way. NIce to get imaginative ideas from the other side – we are so used to “can’t do that”.

Can Zac help fix Richmond Park?

Dear Mr. Goldsmith,

(Image by “The Cycling Dutchman”) http://thecyclingdutchman.blogspot.co.uk/2013/09/london-by-bike-in-three-days-east-west.html

Thank you for organising the meeting about Richmond Park, before Christmas. Richmond Cycling Campaign is really keen to help make the park a great place for everyone, so we’d like to share some thoughts and feedback.

The park is for everyone

This was a big theme at the meeting, although there seemed to be some element of consensus that Richmond Park is not merely a through-route for people moving around different parts of the borough. But we’d like to emphasise something else, here. Perhaps because the most visible cycling in the park is club or competitive or sport cycling, little thought was given to other forms of cycling. Whenever you talk to the Royal Parks, or indeed your working group, we’d like to remind you that not only is there an off-road trail which is consistent source of conflict, but that the park also needs to be accessible to everyone on a bike. This means that children need to be able to ride round, as does anyone else who is powering themselves – handcycles, trikes, people with shopping, etc.

Codes of conduct

Much was made by some panelists about having a code of conduct for park users, and indeed there’s one that was circulated at the meeting. Aside from the basic point that there’s already a perfectly usable set of legislation to govern use of the park, we would be concerned about issuing a code of conduct unless strenuous efforts were made to ensure that it is circulated to all users in the park, and not just those on cycles.

Some Data would be good

As Andrew Gilligan and a number of people observed, the whole conversation needs some actual data. The only data we’ve seen – the STATS19 data, and the Friends’ traffic survey – show that cycling is the most vulnerable thing to do in the park, yet can also provide a very significant majority of traffic at some points during the week. Unfortunately, as Gilligan also noted, cycling attracts a large volume of complaints despite causing virtually no danger to cars, and significantly less danger to pedestrians. We aren’t arguing for cycling to be treated differently, but just to be treated fairly.

Let’s try some things

In the last few years, New York has been very successful with ‘trying things out’ – using low cost trials which can be easily reversed. Recently, the borough of Camden has done the same. The outcome of these experiments is that for small investments, it is possible to get a good idea of what possible solutions might actually work. We think the same could be done in Richmond Park – your advisory panel could consider simple, limited ideas which run for a short period, in order to establish what longer term solutions could be good for the park.

Finally, cycling needs to be safe, and feel safe

Our biggest message though, is that thousands of people in the borough don’t cycle or cycle rarely, because they don’t think it’s safe to do so. And the Space for Cycling guidelines – which echo best Dutch practice – make it very clear that Richmond Park’s roads are simply not of a sufficient standard to make getting on a bicycle of any type an attractive option for many of the people who should – by rights – see the park as a great place to visit by bike, or to use as a safe way to get from Richmond to Kingston, Roehampton, etc. So if you believe that cycling is a good thing which benefits not just those who cycle but society generally – as we do – then you’ll support the Royal Parks in trying to make Richmond Park a place for everyone.

We welcome the opportunity to engage with your working group on the Park.

 

Yours sincerely,

Richmond Cycling Campaign.

Greening the Infrastructure Bill – Urgent

It’s been described by George Monbiot as “the Climate Change Act’s evil twin”. The Infrastructure Bill is entering a crucial stage in Parliament today, and we need your help to get your MP voting for important changes to what it will do. Both the local MPs have Green aspirations so they should be susceptible to public pressure.

With £15 billion being set aside in the Bill for road investment, and a new ‘Strategic Highways Company’ being created, your MP’s vote will be needed to pass a range of vital amendments that will make the company:

  • Protect the environment and communities from problems like noise and air pollution
  • Work with local authorities when it makes new plans, so it doesn’t just focus on widening main roads
  • Stop the new ‘watchdog’ only sticking up for motorists and make it stick up for people living near main roads too

Sixteen health, environment and transport charities  are also asking for a whole new Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy to be added to the Bill. This will guarantee long-term national investment in cycling and walking, in the same way that rail and roads will be funded if the Bill passes.

Please use our quick and easy tool to write to your MP now and ask them to vote the right way when the Infrastructure Bill comes to the House of Commons in the next few days.

Tell your MP to help sort out the Infrastructure Bill

Bike Marking – from Fulwell Police SNG.

Please be advised and make aware as many residents as possible about future bike marking events on Fulwell and Hampton Hill beat:

14/01/2015 16:00-17:00 – Fulwell Rail Station

17/01/2015 14:30-15:30 – Bushy Park gate (end of the High Street Hampton Hill – opposite to The Rising Sun Pub)

26/02/2015 17:00-18:00 – Fulwell Rail Station

As you may know theft of bikes from sheds is a concern across the London; often expensive bikes are left unsecure or locked with very cheap lock in poorly secured sheds.

These events will give the opportunity to mark & register your bikes, and learn how to secure your property.

Ham to Richmond – January 2015 update

Progress on the Ham & Petersham & Richmond Riverside Ward Ask – to create a safe properly surfaced route for walking and cycling between Ham and Richmond.

Latest Developments – Cut Throat Alley improvements

Councillors Frost and Loveland have been on the case and addressed one part of the route: Cut Throat Alley – with excellent results. Here are before and after photos. cutthroatalleyfeb 2014 IMG_0558 This is a real success for all. LCC’s Election campaign combined with local group campaigning, and the persistence and dedication of Councillors Loveland and Frost has made this happen. The work carried out in December immediately turned a slippery and uninviting quagmire into a pleasant attractive path. The addition of the dropped curbs and surfaced path across the green makes it easy for people with buggies, scooters and bikes to cross from Riverside Drive. IMG_0563 Cut Throat Alley is an important link partly because it is a route that can be used when the riverside path floods, but it is also an off road shortcut to the Russell, Strathmore and German Schools. The mud put many people off walking or cycling with their kids to school. The path is officially for walking only but because it is narrow and winding, those with bikes either dismount or cycle very cautiously, giving pedestrians priority – the new surface does not seem to have changed this behaviour. Now this route just needs to be included in the Council’s leaf clearing and maintenance schedule. Another much needed repair was carried out in November on the previously muddiest section of the path next to Petersham Field, where it meets Buccleuch Gardens. Photos show before and after. petersham meadow mud Feb 2014   petersham meadow repaired Dec 14 Now the worst part of the path is the least bad! This repair is not a long term solution but is still a valuable improvement to the route. It also shows that it is worth logging repair complaints on the LBRuT website.  I have seen how this can produce results as long as it counts as a repair rather than a change to the infrastructure. It helps if you can detail why the current state of affairs is dangerous.  http://www.richmond.gov.uk/streets_fault_reporting

Going Forward

There is still much to be done to make the whole route between Ham and Richmond safe and inviting. See http://www.richmondlcc.co.uk/2014/11/02/ham-to-richmond-reconnaissance-ride-12-july-2014/ for more details. In November myself and another local resident spoke at a meeting for the recently established Ham & Petersham Forum.  We put this project forward as one that the Forum could support, in order to help create a healthy, sustainable transport link for the community. This was met with a positive reception from the 150 local people present. This could lead to funding or at least wider local support for the project. All three elected Councillors in the Ward of Ham & Petersham & Richmond Riverside signed up to this LCC Ward Ask, so I hope and expect that they will continue to push for improvements to the rest of the route. The question remains why so many people would still rather choose this route on the Petersham Road jampetershamrddark rather than this one, along the riverside Richmondbridgeview There are aspects that make the off road routes unsafe, difficult or impossible for people on foot, or with kids buggies, or with bikes, bikes with kids trailers, or in wheelchairs, to use this route, such as :

  • mud

PetershamNurseriesmud

  • flooding

floodedpathbuggy

  • gates that are difficult to negotiate

kissinggatebuccleugh

We wish to push the Council to explore potential ways to improve the quality of the paths, without losing the semi-rural quality of the routes, and without creating conflict between different path users. The more people who are able to walk and cycle along this route, the less congested Petersham Road will be, and the more space there will be for those who have no choice but to drive.