If you like to ride away from the traffic support this campaign.
If you like to ride away from the traffic support this campaign.
Meet Twickeham Riverside by Eel Pie island bridge 10.30.
We head up the Thames to Chertsey and then up into the hills as far as Chobham Common. We have lunch at the “Hangar Cafe” at Fairoaks Airport before enjoying a downhill section to Weybridge and so home.
35 miles and a bit hilly.
Nine of us met up on a cloudy Twickenham Riverside. By the time we were going through Hampton the rain started and continual light rain fell on us essentially all day. To be positive the rain washed out any pollution out of the atmosphere and the fresh air and exercise were a lot better than sitting indoors looking gloomily out at the rain.
The Hangar cafe provided excellent coffee and sandwiches and yummy cakes. We didn’t hang about and were back in Twickenham by 2.30.
We go through Bushy Park to Hampton Court – watch out for Daffodils and then follow the Thames back to Teddington . More than half the ride off-road but decent surfaces. Coffee break en-route. Flat 8 miles so back by 12ish depending on how long we spend over coffee.
Snowed off in March !!
If interested please email Paul email@example.com
This is our response to the Ham Quietway (QW1) consultation
You can see the drawings in this PDF. We urge you to make your own response: you can fill in the questionnaire, or email the council team directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Richmond Cycling Campaign generally supports the changes proposed in this consultation, but we have specific concerns which we think need to be addressed in order to maximise the appeal of this route to people who cycle now, or who are considering it.
Taking the individual sections:
Ham Gate to Upper Ham Road
At 2.5m this is probably a minimum width to be shared between walking and cycling, and we predict that on busy days there will be conflict between the two modes because of the width.
The entrance to the park is also a potential area for conflict, as the design seems to suggest cycling joins the main road at this point.
The priority for this path over the driveways and crossings on the route is a very welcome change for the borough, and should benefit both walking and cycling.
At the traffic lights at the end of Ham Gate Avenue, we feel this is a poor experience for people cycling and walking. The design offers low capacity for these movements. It also requires someone cycling from the park to make two movements, whereas a driver needs only to make one. The design to then join Ham Common provides a very real likelihood that waiting traffic will block this junction, making it even harder to cross the road.
Fundamentally, if Ham Common is good enough to cycle on, then so is Ham Gate Avenue. If Ham Gate Avenue isn’t appropriate for cycling, then neither is Ham Common.
Even if we accepted the proposed movement, the designed turn from Ham Common onto the cycle route has extremely low capacity if – as is likely – someone arrives with a family, a cargo bike, or any other larger cycle. Again, conflict is being designed in if this route is used by the volumes we are hoping for.
Once on Ham Common, we welcome the change in design at Martingales Close, which provides a significantly better pedestrian experience. We are concerned that there are no parking changes on this road, however, because the volume of traffic here and the parking on alternate sides makes for a needlessly complex cycling environment which will especially deter less experienced and younger cyclists.
Risks around traffic volume persist on Lock Road. Although potentially suitable by volume and designed speed (20mph), this has some features – such as the speed cushions and build outs – which have a likelihood of causing conflict: we’d like to see some more analysis of how to make sure cycling gets clear priority in this area.
We applaud the proposed changes to the Broughton Avenue / Hardwicke Road crossings, as likely to make this significantly more inviting to cycling.
Similarly, the widening of the more obvious crossing is also a welcome change which we think will make a real difference to people cycling in the area.
Richmond is going to get dockless hire bikes, but won’t get the full planned quietway. 14 separate roads are being lined up for contraflow cycling, North Sheen station will get a cycling channel on its bridge, the A316 quietway-or-superhighway-or-something-else isn’t going to happen any time soon, Twickenham Stadium will clean up their act on cycling signage on match and event days, and an improved design for Cross Deep junction to make it safer for cycling has been sent to TfL.
And every new transport scheme should now go in front of the cycling officer, so we’re hopeful that we will see fewer designs which go to great lengths to discuss car parking, but consistently fail to provide cycle parking, let alone anywhere nice to actually cycle …
The council seems to be running this a bit like a procurement exercise, even though they’re not planning to part with any cash. This has been in analysis for months, and we heard some slightly surprising things about what the council is worried about: bikes not being very nice, how good the apps are, and so on.
There are reasonable questions too: how do we try to keep pavements clear? How do we ensure bikes are picked up if left in places where no-one wants them? The good news is that Councillor Buckwell, the Cabinet Member for Transport, undertook that at least one company would be in trials by April – keep those eyes peeled!
The quietway plans managed once again to dominate the meeting with, in our opinion, appalling manners shown to the councillors and officers. The route was ridden by Will Norman, the walking and cycling commissioner, late last year, and he has refused funding for the Teddington High Street portion – according to the meeting this was essentially because he felt it was not good enough to be a quietway.
However, the council has persuaded TfL to go ahead with the other two parts of the route: from Richmond Park’s Ham gate to Ferry Road, and from …. to Bushy Park. While we would like to see a complete route, and we think Teddington High Street should be an important section, the scheme has basically foundered on NIMBY local opposition.
You may think we’re harsh to say ‘NIMBYs’ with such a broad brush, but it’s quite clear that neither the Teddington Society nor many of its members are overly interested in having people cycling along their High Street if that means they can’t drive or park. This is a shame, as it’s directly in contradiction to the Mayor’s stated goals around healthy streets, liveable neighbourhoods, and air quality improvements.
When we read things like this from members, though, it just reinforces our determination to make the case for good, safe, cycling through Teddington itself, for locals and for visitors. One member from Ham wrote this:
“I tried to cycle with my son to his swimming lesson at Teddington Pool on Saturday. We gave up just beyond Ferry Road and (sadly unable to teleport) we walked, with our bikes, on the narrow pavement to disgruntled looks from pedestrians. I can imagine that most people would resort to the car at this stage, which means going via Kingston or Richmond or not patronise Teddington’s shops and services. We will walk but it will take twice as long and makes Teddington a less appealing destination than it would otherwise be. “
A total of 14 streets are in safety assessment for contraflow cycling. We hope they’ll come to consultation in March or April. Each of these will only be a small project, but we believe that building a proper network for safe cycling across the borough is going to need dozens of small schemes like this, all of which eventually link together.
This has been mooted for far too long, and we don’t have good news on it. There’s no schedule for when things are likely to happen, and we know already it’s been downgraded from a potential super highway to a quietway. We do know proposals are still being developed, so will be keeping our eyes open.
New transport schemes
For a long time, the council has been producing consultations where they seem to have either forgotten cycling, or stuck it in as a band aid afterwards – East Twickenham, Star and Garter [Richard Reynolds], and now East Twickenham.
As a direct result of Richmond Cycling Campaign lobbying, every scheme will now go before the cycling officer before it comes to consultation. Some of what we hope will result is:
The RFU & Twickenham
As many of you will know, Twickenham and Richmond get very busy on match and event days. To deal with these, there are road closures, crowd barriers, and various other changes.
For some months we’ve been trying to persuade the RFU that they need to be better at managing traffic on event days – that they shouldn’t be using ‘cyclists dismount’ signs, that there are other barriers and layouts they should consider, and that they should be more actively supporting and thinking about cycling as a way to deal with some of the transport issues on event days.
Thanks to persistence by local members, the council is meeting the RFU, and has promised to share a proper traffic plan before the next event.
These allow you to get your bike across footbridges without having to physically lift them. We first asked for these under the previous cycling champion, the utterly useless Katherine Harborne. With the help of the cycling officer, these are finally being fitted to more and more bridges, and the next one will be the footbridge over Manor Road, at North Sheen station.
We’re told that part of the towpath along the Thames around Petersham is going to be upgraded. While this isn’t going to be the full improvements we’ve been asking to this for a number of years (details here) it’s a small step in the right direction.
Remember, things only happen when we ask, so we need your help to do so.
Meet Twickenham Riverside – by Eel Pie bridge 10.00.
Our traditional post-turkey jaunt but a bit later to avoid clash with Kingston. On/off road quiet and scenic route to Box Hill then a steady climb to the viewpoint and lunch in NT Cafe at the top (as the pub we used to patronise is now a trendy wine-bar). Enjoy a switchback descent taking us most of the way home. About 40 miles in total. Better bring lights but expect to get back before 4.
Six of us set off from Twickenham and made good timing with paths less muddy than usual (modified route) and some glimmerings of light in the sky. Due to the large numbers of groups of cyclists on the return leg half the group got detached (oops! , embarrassment ) but both halves were back in Twickenham by 3ish.
This is the response of Richmond Cycling Campaign(RCC) to the council plans for East Twickenham. (https://haveyoursay.citizenspace.com/richmondecs/east-twickenham-2017/)
RCC represents London Cycling Campaign members and over a thousand supporters in the borough. We campaign for walking and cycling provision for everyone, so that these are transport modes available to all.
With some minor exceptions we oppose the proposals for East Twickenham and will be urging TfL not to fund them. This is because the plans fail to provide meaningful improvements for walking and cycling, in defiance of both council and Mayor of London policies which call for support for active travel.
The section of Richmond Road involved in this consultation will soon be home to a primary school of over 450 children, It also provides a route currently busy with cycling, and identified in the Mayor’s Transport Strategy as a key corridor for improving cycling. Despite fairly high volumes of pedestrians – obviously likely to increase significantly with a new Lidl and new school, the plans offer little for either mode of transport.
The road design in its proposed form has a poor general score (around 23/100) and multiple ‘critical fails’ using TfL’s ‘Cycling Level of Service Tool’. In continuing proposals for 1.5m (or less) cycle lanes the council is seeking to double down on useless designs installed in 2011 (see here).The design could also include ‘Copenhagen style’ side crossings as used in Waltham Forest and other boroughs, to prioritise walking and cycling, and should have better designs at the end of Richmond Road – removing cyclist/pedestrian conflict rather than maximising it.
We think this scheme should also be the subject of a Healthy Streets analysis (see the toolkit here): it is our suspicion that the road already scores poorly, and that the changes in this scheme will only result in marginal improvements.
This is the text of our response to the Twickenham Riverside planning application. Please take a moment to pop down the sherry and add your opposition! You can make your comment on the planning website.
We oppose the application on grounds of its failure to comply with LBRUT, Greater London Authority and Government policies:
Twickenham Area Action Plan 2013 (‘TAAP’) sets out LBRUT’s policy framework for the site. TAAP includes a principle to improve the pedestrian environment and reduce dominance of parked and moving traffic (220.127.116.11). TAAP states that the whole area should be changed in a comprehensive way, and that each phase must take account of the overall future layout (18.104.22.168). TAAP aims to improve the environment of the Embankment including reduction in car parking (22.214.171.124).
LBRUT’s Core Strategy 2009 includes spatial policy CP9 which aims to revitalise Twickenham Town Centre, creating a high-quality district centre serving residents, workers and visitors, founded on the principles of sustainability. Transport considerations include improving pedestrian and cycle links to and from the centre, and improving traffic management to manage flows and reduce dominance of vehicles on the town centre environment.
The Core Strategy is in the process of being revised and incorporated into LBRUT’s Local Plan. The Local Plan states (LP 44 B) that the council will ‘ensure that new development is designed to maximise permeability within and to the immediate vicinity of the development site through the provision of safe and convenient walking and cycling routes, and to provide opportunities for walking and cycling, including through the provision of links and enhancements to existing networks.’
The London Plan 2016, published by the Mayor’s Office, states that London should be ‘a city where it is easy, safe and convenient for everyone to access jobs, opportunities and facilities with an efficient and effective transport system which actively encourages more walking and cycling and makes better use of the Thames’. The Plan encourages patterns of development that (1) reduce the need to travel especially by car, (2) improve the capacity and accessibility of sustainable travel modes such as public transport, walking and cycling, and (3) encourage shifts to more sustainable forms of transport.
Healthy Streets For London 2017 (‘HSL’) published by the Mayor’s Office, a core element in the Mayor’s overall plan for London, states ‘Walking and cycling are the healthiest and most sustainable ways to travel, either for whole trips or as part of longer journeys on public transport… This will only happen if we reduce the volume and dominance of motor traffic and improve the experience of being on our streets.’
The National Planning Policy Framework 2012, (‘NPPF’) seeks to ensure that the transport system is balanced in favour of sustainable transport modes. Developments should be located and designed to give priority to pedestrian and cycle movements, and should create safe and secure layouts which minimise conflicts between traffic and cyclists or pedestrians.
Failings in regard to TAAP
The application is not a comprehensive plan as required by TAAP. The site borders Water Lane and the Embankment, yet the plans do not consider any of the improvements of these thoroughfares anticipated by TAAP, for example reduced car parking along the water-front. The application’s car parking will increase traffic on the Embankment in contravention of TAAP.
Failings in regard to the Core Strategy and the Local Plan
The application encourages cars by excessive provision of car parking. Increased parking will increase the dominance of cars in the town centre environment in contravention of the Core Strategy. The application offers no improvement to cycling between the riverside and King Street, a requirement of the Core Strategy. The application fails the requirements of the Local Plan in not considering the riverside cycle route to Richmond or between the riverside and King Street which would have provided permeability to the site.
Failings in regard to the London Plan and HSL
The provision of cycle spaces at the rear of the basement does not encourage cycling as required by the London Plan as there is no improvement of cycling infrastructure in the immediate area; notably no northbound cycling on Water Lane to link with King Street. The application does nothing to reduce car travel, a requirement of the London Plan and HSL. The application does not improve the on-street experience or create a space where walkers and cyclists are free from manoeuvring cars.
Failings in regard to NPPF
The application gives no priority to cycle movements as required by NPPF. The car parking spaces within the development and the access via the Embankment will lead to increased conflict between pedestrians and cyclists on the one hand and traffic on the other, in contravention of NPPF.
This is a copy of an ongoing document we’re working on, showing what we’re currently aware of in the borough. It’s not complete, and we need input from others, so if you have anything you want to add, please let us know! If you want to comment, you can also add your notes to our Google Document, here.
The Ham to Teddington route (quietway 1) has been consulted on, and is now in detailed planning.
10/12/17: This will go to a final round of consultation some time soon.
Bushy Park to Kingston (QW2) is the second which is likely to go to consultation, but we haven’t yet got any dates.
Liveable neighbourhoods: Richmond town centre bid for some money, but wasn’t successful
10/12/17 TfL will feedback to the council. Our suspicion is that the bid failed because it had insufficient plans to look at how traffic-dominated the area is, but this is only a suspicion at the moment.
As LCC we have requested the borough become a member of CLOCS.
10/12/17: Members have written to the council, and we are assembling a group request as part of the LCC work.
Corridors. These are routes where the council will look at walking, cycling and other modes at the same time, and try to fix an overall route, rather than do piecemeal changes.
The proposed corridors are:
C1) A305 Richmond Road (j/w Aragon Rd – Richmond Bridge)
C2) A305 Sheen Road (j/w Church Rd to TLRN URRW)
C3) A306 Castlenau & Rocks Lane (j/w URRW – Hammersmith Bridge)
C4) A313 Park Rd, Hampton Road & Teddington High Street (j/w Uxbridge Rd – Kingston Road)
C5) A311 Hampton Hill & Hampton Road (j/w Upper Sunbury Rd – Heath Rd)
C6) A310 Kingston Road, Strawberry Vale & Cross Deep (j/w Kingston Bridge rdbt – King St)
C7) A3004 St Margarets Road (j/w Richmond Road to boundary)
C8) A307 Kew Road (Richmond Circus – TLRN Mortlake Rd)
C9) A305 Staines Road / The Green (j/w A316 – Heath Rd/The Green)
C10) A308 Upper Sunbury Rd & Hampton Court Rd (borough boundary to j/w Kingston Bridge rdbt)
C11) B358 Nelson Rd, HBR & Sixth Cross Rd (j/w Hanworth Rd – Hampton Rd)
C12) A3003 Mortlake High Street & B350 Lonsdale Rd (j/w A316 – Castlenau)
C13) A312 Uxbridge Road (j/w Hampton Hill HS – boundary)
Schools. The council provides basic training for all children in year 6 of primary school, and has various things it does to support school cycling. This does not seem to include:
– audits of bike parking
– ensuring routes to schools are safe
– 20mph outside schools
– detailed planning support to help families get to school
Schools. We’re concerned at reports from places like Teddington School, where they have been talking about aggressive and inappropriate management of children cycling to school. We’ve asked the council to find out what’s going on.
10/12/17: apparently council safety officials have visited the school to discuss this. We don’t have details of the meeting, but our expectation is that schools are being made fully aware of what they can and can’t do in relation to cycling.
Towpaths: these are being partially upgraded in some areas, but the council is unwilling to say ‘we’ll make these proper places to cycle’. A good example is the use of gates, poor surfacing, and absent or inconsistent lighting.
Cross Deep. This has been to the Cycling Liaison Group a number of times, with no proper proposals. We hope to have a proper engineer’s report at the next CLG
Road Safety Week, Bike Week, and other activities where national campaigns are run: currently the council doesn’t get involved in any of these. In 2017 Bikefest didn’t happen, because it had previously run through the effort of volunteers.
River Crane: we’re waiting for a route through here. Apparently soil contamination has to be dealt with before council will take over responsibility.
10/12/17: We perhaps need to check with planning enforcement, as this is a condition of the planning application that it’s fixed.
Mortlake Brewery and other developments: the council consistently fails to plan for large developments. Twickenham redevelopment, St Mary’s university, Brewery are all examples of where active travel (walking and cycling) don’t get a look in. There’s never anything to properly encourage cycling and walking somewhere, instead of driving.
Twickenham Riverside: We’d like to see it being possible to cycle to and from the site, as well as access to the Riverside being easier for walking and cycling than driving. In particular, we don’t want the riverside to remain a car park.
10/12/17: We need to respond to the planning application, which is still far from good enough.
Richmond Park: the park forms part of some quietway routes. In order for this to work, the routes need to be accessible for multiple types of bicycle, and for people with a range of mobility impairments. This isn’t currently the case.
Village centres: most of the village centres have had some kind of update, but virtually none of these updates include cycle lanes, or any meaningful calming of traffic
Copthall Road: recently consulted on. Again, no meaningful changes for cycling or walking. This area is used as a rat run, and the opportunity to stop this has been missed. (And local residents don’t like it, either … )
Star and Garter: recently consulted changes here again failed to do much for cycling, and just assume that narrowing a road makes it better for cycling. (Consultation link, our response, cyclescape)
Byfeld Gardens: this has been asked of as a opportunity for filtering. (Link or CLG minutes)
Kew Gardens station – just had a consultation on making the pedestrian environment better, but didn’t mention cycling at all! We asked the council to explain this.
10/12/17: told by the council that cycle parking will be improved as part of the scheme, but no actual details.
Radnor Gardens bridge: idea for a walking and cycling bridge across the river. Is a great idea, but council aren’t interested. See here
HPNF consulted on the proposal for a new walking and cycling bridge at the Neighbourhood Plan travel and streets workshop. 95% were in favour of a bridge. 90% favoured Ham Street to Orleans House connection, 10% favoured a new bridge at Teddington. There was no support for a bridge at Radnor Gardens due to its limited use for utility cycling and concern that the unlit stretch across Ham Lands would not feel safe after dusk.
Cycle hoop installations: 6 have been consulted on, over 100 requests for other slots in the borough. Not sure what the next steps are.
Richmond Station upgrade to cycle parking – part of the Liveable Neighbourhoods bid, but it looks like this funding pot is separate. We are talking to the council about what we’d like to see here, and need to publish the initial list of requests.
Introduction of dockless bikes: council is looking at this at the moment. Apparently some kind of policy is being looked at, and they’re engaging with bike companies, but we think we’d like to see this happening in the borough. One key concern is that it will increase pressure on cycle parking, which is already busy in many key areas.
More cycle parking in & around Richmond Town Centre & on the waterfront. This is ongoing. Everyone can request parking, and the cycling officer is working to get this improved. However, it is ‘here and there’ rather than any substantial new parking initiatives anywhere, at the moment.
Policing / enforcing cycle lanes around the borough using parking enforcement officers to issue tickets to vehicles parked in them illegally. . This is probably not a ‘thing going on’. But it should be. (Observation: I think that parking is devolved to boroughs.)
Each park has a community group, but many of them have accessibility problems for cycling – like Palewell Park. SWLEN group looks like it talks about these things … In Palewell Park, there’s a kind of kissing gate towards one side which is impassable by wheelchair, pram or larger bike. Apparently these were installed to stop people riding motorbikes on the park.
Royal Parks walking and cycling group: Richmond Cycling Campaign wasn’t invited to this, which is something of a disappointment. Issues we’d want considered: accessibility of gates into the park, and use of rumble strips. There is also a wider discussion which needs to be had around how to deal with the volumes of traffic in the park.
Bridges list: this is online here. Anyone can comment, and we will use this to liaise with the council.
Cycle hangars: people should carry on requesting these. 6 more are to go to the cabinet member very soon, and others should follow in consultation.
Cycling strategy: this still hasn’t been adopted by the council. It’s not clear why, or what needs to happen here, but we understand that until it is adopted, it won’t be followed through.