Readout from meeting of 26 March 2018

A turnout of over 20 , including 2 Council Officers and two prospective Councillors participated in an interesting meeting:

  • Murray Woodburn, currently Head of Highways and Traffic  at Newham Council and Richard Wadey, Sustainable Transport Officer, presented Newham Council’s new Cycle Strategy (see earlier post) and answered a wide range of questions on it.  This discussion will inform further analysis planned for the annual report to be presented to the annual meeting on 30 April.
  •  This discussion also informed our further discussion on Living Streets where the emerging priorities (which, for this exercise combine practicality and political attraction) are for areas without through traffic in (a) the north of the Borough, (b) the Freemasons Rd/Custom house area, and (c) Green St area, plus enhancing corridors  (a) the Romford Rd, (b) Barking Rd, (c) Leyton Rd, and (d) A117.
  • The Council’s next LIP bid (for funding for transport projects) is due to be submitted to TfL in September  and there will only be a short time for this to be consulted upon.
  • A follow up audit ride of Stratford Gyratory will be organised.
  • We approved payment of £238.10 for the rebuild by Bill of our “Fix Your Ride” trailer.
  • We had a preliminary discussion of what next years’ budget may look like.
  • Francois Donnard presented the cycling offer  that Decathalon at Beckton was making involving supply of bikes and spares as well as training.  This looked a promising avenue to explore further.
  • Newham council have announced that their partnership for dockless bikes (a pilot of approximately 6 months schemes in West Ham and Royal Docks) will be with Mobike. This is not the LCC preferred supplier.

Arnold

 

 

Much Hadham Ride Report 25.03.18

Given that the clocks had gone forward to BST and everyone had an hour less sleep we had an excellent turnout for this ride. Eighteen of us gathered at Leytonstone to catch the tube to Epping where three more riders awaited our arrival. The weather was clement, 10C and no wind, which was helpful as we were a large group on a slightly longer ride than usual, 37miles riding clockwise around Harlow. The road from Epping to Roydon in Hertfordshire is quite fast, and there was a fair amount of Sunday traffic so it was nice to cross the level crossing at Roydon and enjoy the quiet roads to Hunston and Much Hadam. There we crossed the ford and rode up towards Perry Green and the Henry More foundation, this is where the technical problems started.

 

Arnold’s derailleur sheered off just outside Perry Green. A few of us stayed to help, while the majority rode on for a mile to see the HM foundation and get a coffee. We broke the chain, disconnected and removed the derailleur and shortened the chain, so it became a single speed machine. About to move on and I discover I had a flat, the first of two for me and these deflations were followed by those of two other riders, four punctures in all.

The cafe at the HM Foundation was closed and so we continued with a caffeine deficit. We crossed the M11 and arrived at Sawbridgeworth, where Arnold’s single speed repair finally failed and he took a train home.

 

We followed the Essex lanes to Matching Tye where we had a well deserved lunch at the Fox, the food was good and it was warm enough to eat in the garden for those that chose to. The route back followed Fagotters Lane towards Blake Hall and Toot Hill. We fixed another complicated flat, where the valve broke in the pump, and tackled the final hill to Epping Station in the sun. Overall an eventful ride, but very satisfying that we overcame our problems and enjoyed the day’s riding in the spring countryside in good company.

As always, thanks to Robin for the photos! More can be viewed here:

http://bit.ly/2IdpQLh

& the route here:

https://www.relive.cc/view/g19029313915

 

Ride Report: COYI 4 March

Throughout the cold spell the dream of the “Come on You Irons” West Ham United themed ride did not fade and die and  we were rewarded by starting off the ride in the usual Newham Cyclists balmy weather conditions.  Things did take a turn for the worse with thicker cloud cover and being too early for the coffee stall at Cody Dock.

Undeterred the band of 11 continued through quiet back streets and off road routes to visit 4 of the five sites where West Ham play(ed) and the site of the Thames Ironworks.

Refreshment having been taken in the Royal Docks were were joined by three more for the last leg to the Boleyn Statue commemorating West Ham winning the World Cup

Here was a welcoming party from our partners in Bike from Boleyn, including Bobby Seagull.

Arnold

Readout from 26 February 2018 Meeting

A good turnout of 16 mustered at the Velodrome on a bitterly cold evening.

We we rewarded with a really interesting presentation and discussion with Michael Barratt,  TfL’s development impact assessment lead, who leads a team using innovative (and co-operative) methods to mitigate the impact from London’s major construction projects, particularly for pedestrians and cyclists.  He has already provided very helpful assistance to us on the Stratford Gyratory Project.

Given the plethora of development in Newham the approach he described should be very beneficial.  This includes liaising with (a) constructors direct and through any “Consider Constructor” type scheme, (b) the Council, and (c) using TfL’s reporting tool,and the draft TfL Traffic Management Handbook.

We agreed run a feeder from Stratford to the Free Cycle on 28 July 2018.  If you are able to help marshal this important event please put the date into your diary.

Steve outlined the ride programme to date and forthcoming events.  Our 2 country lane drides have attracted participants from all over London  Our local leisure rides start this Sunday, weather permitting.

Our partnership with AAA got off to a successful start with a bike checking session followed the next week by a Greenway ride.

We decided to put in a collective response the LB Redbridge’s consultation on its “Ilford Garden Junction” which includes in the plan a two way cycle track on the north side of the Romford Rd linking the existing track to the Tunnel Ave and the Roding Way,  under the North Circular Rd; andthe creation of a “pocket park” .  Please also respond to this very straightforward consultation as individuals supporting the scheme and, in section 3 on cycling adding the comment that the cycle provisions to be included phase 1 – the only phase to be funded so far.

Olawale updated the meeting on current infrastructure issues:

  •  the removal of a point closure at Glenparke Rd/Palmerston Rd; this was regarded a a retrograde step that will encourage rat running  in an area ripe for creating a “village” without through traffic.
  • A link between CS3 and Barking along Jenkins Lane, which is generally beneficial but has some issues of concern which have been transmitted to the Council’s Sustainable Transport Officer.
  • a huge development in the offing at Stephenson St which ought to  improve connectivity e.g. between West Ham Station and the Leaway and under the District Line.  However the initial transport plan needs careful consideration as to the benefits to cycling that should derive from this scheme.

The Channelsea Ramp on the Greenway has been opened and now provides an excellent off road link from the Greenway to Stratford Town Centre. There have however been a number of attacks targeting cyclists o the Greenway.  It is helpful to record personal experiences with the Greenway Users Group.

There was a general discussion on the implications of the recent Councillor selection process by local labour party wards.

Arnold

A Busy Weekend

On Saturday 17 February 6 Newham Cyclists set up their stall to check and fix bikes at the children’s bike club of Ambition, Aspire, Achieve at the Terence Brown Arc Canning Town.  We were blessed with unseasonably sunny and warm weather as bikes were checked for future use by the club, including a ride we are proposing to lead on 24 February based on the Greenway.

The next day was the Secret Nuclear Bunker Ride.  Here is Steve’s Report:

Maybe it was the fine weather, maybe some cyclists felt impelled to know the whereabouts of a place of greater safety, the reason is unclear, but the outcome was that we had a record 21 riders for this second ride of 2018. The central line staff and passengers were bemused by the large number of cyclists boarding the train at Leytonstone for the journey Epping and the start of our adventure.

From Epping station the route took us on a long downhill out of the town, under the M11 and into the countryside. There had been some debate about whether the route is undulating or hilly, so this time we had among us one rider on a single speed fixy who would put it to the ultimate test. The ride up to Toot Hill is a good way to warm up, then we followed the small lanes to the London Road. We crossed over and followed Shonks Mill Lane down to the ford, often flooded in winter, but although the water in the stream was high the road was dry. We turned off up Lady Hill and this eventually brought us to the back of the SNB. Ignoring the “Keep Out”, signs we crossed no mans land and found ourselves outside the SNB and next to the familiar bombs/rockets. Some riders even locked their bikes to these for extra security during the visit.


On leaving the SNB we did have a problem as one rider had not left with the group and had to be found. Fortunately the lunch stop at “The Bricklayers Arms”, was only a couple of miles away in Stondon Massey, so we were soon reunited, and able to enjoy an al fresco break in the winter sun. The return leg took us via Ongar and Greensted, back to Toot Hill, where we retraced those undulations back to Epping. Indeed it was surprising but true that this ride is possible without gears, but perhaps not for everyone

Thanks to all participants, especially Arnold, backmarker and Robin for the photos; full album from-

https://flickr.com/photos/8798439@N03/sets/72157692799893044

Here is can animated view of the ride with statistics
https://www.relive.cc/view/g18004974574

Arnold

Readout from 29 January Meeting

17 of us squeezed in our last minute venue – Forest Gate Arts, with an  agenda that was equally  packed and interesting.

Dockless Bike Hire: Fraser from Ofo bikes spoke to us about the company, their bikes and the dockless system, their plans, and their  discussions with Newham Council with a view to introducing them into the borough.  We were even able to try one out!  

The company is a partner of LCC and ultimately plans 150,000 bikes in London, starting in Islington and Hackney and focusing on surrounding boroughs.  Newham is therefore a natural point of expansion.

Sad news:  The bike shop Pave Velo has closed in the QE Olympic Park.

Ambition, Aspire, Achieve: we plan to go forward with this partnership by providing bike fixing stalls at the children’s cycle club on 17 February, 28 April and 26 May with short Greenway based rides on the weks following – 24 February, 5 May and 2 June. These are all Saturdays between 10am and 1pm.  If you are able to help (and haven’t already volunteered) please let me know.

Forest Gate to Wanstead Link: This is a new subject.  Given how appalling Centre Rd is, it is difficult to cycle directly to Wanstead from Forest Gate.  We decided to do some preliminary investigation, by a ride of the route; and also to see if there is a group in Redbridge who would be interested in pursuing this with us.

Bike from Boleyn:  Next ride is April 14.  Although this is some way off marshals are needed.  So if you can help put this date in your diary and let me know.

Stratford Gyratory:  an audit of the works was undertaken with Newham Council’s project manager, the Met Police Safety Unit and Michael Barratt, TfL’s Development Impact Assessment Lead, who promotes innovative methods to mitigate the impact of major construction projects.  His subsequent report highlights the various “hotspots” and recommends what can be done to mitigate.  The main action point for us is to lobby the constructors who are taking up disproportionate space in Great Eastern Street (which is separate  to Gyratory project).  We agreed to invite Michael to our next meeting. The audit could usefully be repeated in a few months.

Liveable Neighbourhoods: This is the focus of LCC election campaign.  It involves identifying at least one good project for local groups to push for in the next round of applications for TfL funding.  Newham Council has so far not made any applications.  In preliminary discussions  a number of potential schemes were identified which could be part of a future campaign.  This will need to be picked up as it becomes clearer who the local candidates are likely to be.  Olawale is attending a workshop on the broader campaign for Liveable Neighbourhoods.

Ultra-Low Emission Zone:  We agreed to respond to the current TfL consultation, pushing for more stringent measures – quicker.

Annual meeting:  This will take place on 30 April.

Arnold