Readout from Meeting of 30 July

Despite the absence of some regulars 20 of us assembled in the Garden of the View Tube Cafe to participate in a lively meeting.

  1. Bill had sent in a note of the financial position which was a balance of £879.20 thanks in part to donations from the  Fix My Ride stall since April of £241.43 (£119.21 from the forest Gate Festival).  Some of that will be needed to replenish stocks.  Our payment for providing the RideLondon feeder ride from Stratford is to come.
  2. We discussed the fact that Newham was one of the few London Boroughs to provide free parking for a fist car for households in its in its parking zones.  We decided to put together a first draft of a letter to the Mayor, the responsible Cabinet Member and interested Councillors, setting out our view in the context of promoting  sustainable transport;  and to approach other interested bodies  (e.g. Living Streets, Newham CCG) with a view to putting the case jointly.
  3. Arnold outlined the results of the catch up meeting of 13 July with the Sustainable Transport Officer of Newham Council.  This chart provides a summary of the position:
    Newham Cyclists Issues of Interest July 2018
    and this document (the LIP) sets out planned spending in 2018-19 on various cycle projects intended to be implemented by Newham Council.
    LIP PROGRAMME 2018-19 V
    Please let me know if you have any comments or questions on either of these documents.
  4. We intend to be represented on an audit ride of the  CS3 extension to Barking being conducted by Newham Council.
  5. We debriefed on the RideLondon feeder from Stratford.   It did have very positive feedback from the participants (74 going and approximately 30 returning).  In particular we will examine alternatives to CS2  from Mile End to Aldgate.
  6. The next Bike from Boleyn ride is sceduled for 20 October.  If you would like to help put this in your diaries.  There are plans to link it with a street party/festival at the site of the World cup Statue.
  7. We decided to organise another sequence of bike fixing and rides for the children’s cycle club at Ambition, Aspire, Achieve for September/early October.  The feedback on the rides so fr this year has been very positive and those helping have found it very satisfying.
  8. We brainstormed how Brampton Primary might find some bikes for its bike club and where there might be some old bikes for reconstruction by Pro Bike Service.
  9. There have been some events on the Greenway organised by Sustrans and Newham Council.he section north of Stratford high St is due to open (at long last) next year. It includes (a) a 4m path (as per the rest of the sections between Wick Lane and Canning Road) with the legacy fencing/concrete blocks that the council is negotiating with LLDC to remove so we can install lighting and CCTV (b)  alarge bridge area next to the rail line (c) the possible reopening of the closed City Mill River Path on the north side of the Greenway which would that offeran additional high quality future connection, being more direct to UCL/Stadium Island etc and (d) a ramp, constructed by Crossrail, to Marshgate Lane.Since the meeting I have asked about the overhead lighting in the section of the  Greenway north of the View Tube.  Apparently they have never worked but there is permission for the power connection which should take place this month.
  10. Our Canterbury to Ramsgate ride takes place on Sunday 5 August.
  11. There was a long discussion, based on Jonathan’s Report (below) on the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.  It was clearly disappointing how little regard LLDC had for cycling facilities, how little understanding of what was acceptable and how much it was promoting rat running.  Noe of this is particularly surprising given its poor track record.  A ray of light is that the Newham Councillors now on the LLDC Planning Committee had an understanding of cycle issues.  We decided to draft another letter  expressing our concerns and seek to act in partnership with neighbouring borough groups.  We would also examine the possibility of putting the QEOP forward as a Low Traffic Neighbourhood in an attempt to halt the current adverse trend.

Arnold

Readout from May 2018 Monthly Meeting

This was held on 21 May to avoid a bank holiday.  In the evening sunshine we took a quick ride around the rat runs of Manor Park,  between the Romford Road and East Av/Plashet Grove, either side of High Street North, leaving time for discussion in the garden of the Golden Fleece afterwards.

On Manor Park, Adam suggested how through traffic could be stopped by point road closures leaving groups of streets accessible (each group shown as the same colour on this map):

We decided to-

  • discuss the problem and possible solutions with Newham Council’s Sustainable Transport Officer and Newham Living Streets;
  • invite ideas for possible solutions.  If you have ideas or would like to participate in developing ideas please get in touch, by 10 June, to newham@lcc.org.uk and ratrunningssshm@gmail.com);
  •  continue to raise awareness of local residents, schools etc;
  • inform the new local councillors.

We discussed how to run our Freecycle feeder ride on 28 July.  We are looking at a new route.  Marshals are needed.  If you can help and have not already indicated please let me know on newham.lcc.org.uk  again by 10 June.

We were not impressed with the plans for Q6 Temple Mill Lane/Leyton Rd jucntion and will be renewing our objections.  It is imperative that the quietways reach an decent quality.  otherwise they will waste public money on infrastructure that will not attract cyclists.

We decided to run a programme of Councillor Rides to reinforce with our new Council the potential of and benefits from cycling in Newham.

Out third cycle of bike maintenance and ride with Ambition, Aspire, Achieve goes ahead over teh next two Saturdays.

Arnold

Readout from Annual Meeting

A lively Annual Meeting, with refreshment, was held at the East Ham Working Mens Club on 30 April 2018.  A turnout of 24 members and guests heard an interesting presentation by Dr Rachel Aldred, an LCC Trustee, on cycle safety.  She has undertaken a study which examined the various factors contributing to cycle safety such s the nature of the roads, the amount of traffic, the presence of bus lanes, speed limits and the number of cyclists.  One of her findings was that safety improved with a 20mph speed limit irrespective whether it was enforced or not.

This finding was complemented by Jeremy Leach from Living Streets London and 20’s Plenty who provided an optimistic view of recent developments including forthcoming speed limiters for buses.

Gerard Bailey, Chairman of Bike from Boleyn, thanked us for our contribution to the successful ride of thee previous day.

In addition to the matters raised in the report (see earlier post):

  • Newham Cyclists and Living Streets Newham jointly   met with the (now) Mayor of Newham, at her invitation;  she  subsequently pledged to submit a bid to TfL for a Low Traffic Neighbourhood.
  • Some residents in Manor Park are now wanting to take action against rat-running .  We will seek to assist.

On the business side the following Officers were elected for 2018-19:

  • Joint co-ordinators, Kerena Fussell and Arnold Ridout
  • Treasurer, Bill Bremner
  • Infrastructure Rep, Olawale Ajibola
  • Ride co-ordinator, Steve Smith.

The Accounts for 2017-18, the Budget for 2018-19 and the Annual  Report (see earlier post) were all approved.

Arnold

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

 

 

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

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

 

 

 

 

 

Monthly Meeting January 2018

Next meeting is at Forest Gate Arts on 29 January  at 7.30 pm
13 Upton Ln, London E7 9PA

 The attached document –Newham-Cyclists-Issues-of-Interest-Jan-2018-without-maps sets out the outcome of a recent meeting with the Sustainable Transport Officer of Newham Council to review current infrastructure developments.

I am hoping to add before the meeting the outcome of the examination of the Stratford Gyratory works with  with Newham Council, TfL and the Metropolitan Police.

Arnold

Readout from October 2017 Meeting

We tried a new venue, the Atherton Leisure Centre.  Once the disappointment of coffee not being available from the cafe was overcome it was deemed a success by our turnout of 11.

  • The main concern was the poor to outright dangerous temporary provisions for cyclists on CS2  at the Stratford Gyratory,  Letts Rd, and Strand East works.

We decided to invite TfL, local Councillors and Newham officials on a ride to experience the difficulties for themselves.

  • We will respond to consultations concerning planned works at Dames Rd, Tollgate Rd and Pier Rd.  All illustrate the lack of a coherent approach to cycling in the borough; and the TfL plans for Pier Rd are simply poor quality, with token and ineffectual cycle provision.
  • We had a preliminary discussion on LCC proposed campaign around the local elections on living streets and areas without through traffic.  Both are significant issues in Newham.
  • We discussed and progressed our ride programme for 2018.
  • We welcomed two cycle workshops in and around the borough, at Leytonstone Road and in the Community Garden at the eastern corner of Honor Lea Avenue.
  • The bike maintenance training for women is fully subscribed and will go ahead this autumn.
  • Our next meeting will be primarily social.  watch this space for details

Readout from September Meeting

A well attended and lively meeting on 25 September.

We discussed:

  • A Greenway Activity Plan proposed by Newham Council to encourage use of the Greenway.  A number of us were happy to volunteer to ride the Greenway at different times to encourage use of the Greenway and keep our eye out for maintenance issues.  Also we might bring “Fix Your Ride” there on suitable and pre-publicised occasions. If you are interested in participating in either of these activities let me know.
  • We will continue participation, as far as we can,  in Community Roadwatch, which undertakes speed checks with the police  which can result in reminder letters to speeding drivers.  This with a view to being able to suggest a wider variety of roads for this exercise in future.
  • We discussed a general paper on Cycling in Newham  aimed at Councillors.  This will be finalised.
  • We agreed to continue our partnership with AAA cycle club for children at Canning Town.  There will be a final “Fix Your Ride” session at the Arc on 11 November and we will factor in participation in our planning for next year.
  • There was general approval for our future meetings to be held in different parts of the borough.
  • Steve, the Ride Coordinator, will start planning our ride calendar for 2018 and welcomes ideas for rides and volunteers for leading them.

Arnold

Readout from 31 July Meeting

Our July meeting started with an well attended ride from Forest Gate around the Olympic Park.  We were please to welcome Fran from LCC. More joined us for the business end, which took place at The Neighbourhood in Stratford Village.

  • We elected Olawale as our Infrastructure Rep. This is effectively a change in name (from Local Scheme Lead) to fall in line with the LCC organisation of its Infrastructure Review Group.  It was noted how active we had been in responding to consultation and how thorough the responses, prepared by Olawale, were.
  • We discussed the Stratford Gyratory proposals where Newham Council, contrary to their consultation and the overwhelming response to it, were dropping the proposal for 20mph limit.  We have been liaising with “20’s Plenty” and considered further how we could campaign for the restoration of a 20 mph limit.
  • The lack of coherence of the Council’s approach was only reinforced by its recent Traffic Order for a 20 mph limit at neighbouring Maryland (but not Windmill Lane -the cycle route connecting to Westfield and roads to Stratford and Leyton) nor Forest Lane, a rat run which already has speed cushions.
  • Forthcoming consultation responses were in preparation for Gallions Roundabout and High St North.
  • Bill, who sent his apologies, reported (vicariously) that we had received our portion of membership fees from LCC and our grant from Newham Council for “Fix My Ride”.
  • Our feeder ride 9 July successfully brought over 50 riders to the Freecycle event, and about 30 returned with us.  We decided to hold a debriefing session.
  • Fix Your Ride will next appear at Forest Gate Market on 12 August and the following week at the Arc Saturday Cycle Club  in Canning Town (run by the charity Ambition, Aspire, Achieve).  Upcoming rides are a family ride with AAA on 2 September, a brewery ride on 16 September and a Bike from Boleyn ride on 30 September.
  • We had a first discussion on the Mayor of London’s draft Transport Strategy, and recent TfL transport analyses.  LCC are preparing a central response- for which we emphasized the need for hard targets with strong interim targets, consequences for not meeting them, and proper TfL control over how their money was spent by local councils.  A zero accident target for 2041 may already be changing the approach to the quality of cycle projects (which can be very poor, as TfL’s for Nine Elms demonstrates).
  • We considered the practicality of applying for a London Cycle Grant, for which applications are open to 18 September.  We recognised the practical difficulties and the size of the commitment and did not want to make up a project simply to get the grant.   However Bike from Boleyn was interested in a partnership with us and it was worth considering a scheme for taking elderly people out cycling or in a rickshaw.
  • The LCC will be running a feature of women and cycling and Kerena provided  an update on our activity – promoting women’s rides and encouraging cycle leader training.

Arnold