In time for the beginning of May bank holiday, some new links into the Olympic Park from the River Lee navigation have opened.Â These links might be useful for people going to the big ride on the 17th May, Â if they are unable to join our feeder ride.
AtÂ Old Ford Lock, you can now get into the South Park close to the Great British Garden by the Stadium via a gentle ramp.Â
By the Copper Box Bridge across the river/canal, There isÂ now use a zig zag ramp, (next to stairs) from The Newham side (and towpath) to the top of the bridge by the copper box, on the other side of the bridge there is a lift.
The East Marsh at Hackney is now open too, Though Eton Manor is not yet so you still have to cross busy roads between there and the North Park.
Â There are still a few access routes to open, but some others should be open shortly.
We received the following email from Gareth Knight, Conservative party candidate for Canning Town South, which was originally sent direct to LCC.
Hi, I am a candidate in Canning Town South in Newham and I’ve just seen your website.
Firstly, my twitter handle is @GarethKnight and I’m more than happy for your members to contact me.
Secondly, I support your calls for dedicated cycle lanes on the Lower Lea Crossing and Silvertown Viaduct.Â
Finally, I would go far further than this and support a wholesale strategy to encourage residents in my ward to commute to Canary Wharf by bike, relieving pressure on the DLR and Jubilee Lines, including: -secure cycle parking serving the developments on Western Gateway and Seagull Lane and the new developments off Hallsville Road; -secure cycle parking for all new developments in the Canning Town area to be built as they are constructed; -bike racks and cycle lanes on Western Gateway serving local shops, restaurants, the Emirates Air Line and the ExCel centre; -the introduction of “Boris Bikes” to the Royal Docks area (they currently stop before they reach Newham); -a cyclist hotline where reports of potholes, dangerous roads and dangerous drivers can be made so action can be taken quickly; -mandatory cycle proficiency training for all local primary school children; -an offer for adults to receive cycle proficiency training to increase confidence in cycling on London roads and reminders of the highway code as far as it affects cyclists.
I would actively encourage any of my colleagues on the council to identify similar opportunities to promote cycling in their wards, most notably around the Royal Docks and Olympic Park.
Newham has one of the worst reputations of any borough in London when it comes to being cycle-unfriendly and if elected, I would want to substantially shift that reputation as far as my ward is concerned.
We fitted in a lot of decisions and a lot of discussion. Â Please note the many dates for your diary.
To run a stall at Forest Gate Festival onÂ 21 JuneÂ and ensure one way or another that there was also a Dr Bike. Also to explore the possibility of a bike marking session from the Met Police.Â Â Let me know if you could do a stint on the tall for however long or short a period.
To man a stall at the Forest Gate flea market onÂ 18 MayÂ (subject to confirmation that we can). Â This could be used for the Space for Cycling Campaign which will still be current. Â Again if you could do a stint let me know.
To run a feeder ride with Tower Hamlets to the LCC central London ride onÂ 17 MayÂ co-ordinating also with Redbridge. Â There will be a met in forest Gate and a fixed pick up at a suitable point in Stratford. Â We will go through the Olympic Park and by canal to the Green Bridge to meet Tower Hamlets Wheelers. Â Again let me know if you would like to assist (essentially backmarking the group).
Our fourth Newham Ride will be onÂ 7 SeptemberÂ (subject to being able to access Cody Dock).
To print business type cards to distribute with our contact details. Â Bill’s mock up met with universal delight.
To update our general leaflet and get it professionally printed.
To add Â British Cycling rides in and around the Olympic Park and the Lea Valley to our events calendar.
To design and purchase a pop up banner.
To explore the possibilities for publicity in the margins of the Tour de France onÂ 7 July.
To categorise our rides.
To run the Rainham March ride onÂ 5 October
To publicise convenient group rides -Â 20 JulyÂ to Southend andÂ 27 JulyÂ to Cambridge.
To convert our next meeting into an evening ride around the Olympic Park ending up at the Â Brewery Tap cafe in Forest Gate. Â Due to Bank Holiday (when there will not be our usual Monday meeting) this will take place onÂ Tuesday 3 JuneÂ starting at Forest Gate market site (corner of Sebert and Woodgrange Roads) at 7.00pm aiming to get back to the cafe at 8.30pm. Â Please note that this is a change of date from that discussed at the meeting due to availability of the cafe. Â As it will be opening specially for us can youÂ please let me know if you are wishing to come along, so we have an idea of numbers.
As if all that was not enough we also managed to fit discussion on the reaction from local candidates to the space for Cycling Campaign (poor, despite our efforts which were selected for special plaudits by the LCC) and an in depth discussion of cycle provisions and culture in the light of the recent presentation at the Dutch embassy.
A final date reminder – ride to the petrified oaks of Mundon deep in the Essex countryside onÂ 24 August.Â
Thanks to everyone for their contributions to a lively meeting.
I’ve made two rather exciting purchases recently – a swanky pair of John Fluevog brogues (www.fluevog.com) and my gorgeous vintage bike. The brogues were a holiday present from me and are not only the most stylish, but the most comfortable pair of shoes I’ve ever owned. ‘Poppy’ is an Elswick Hopper Safeway manufactured around 1975 and purchased from the gang at The Emporium, Number8 Forest Gate (Twitter: @number8FG).
Poppy came with all the original fixtures and fittings including Sturmey Archer 3-speed hub gears, y-breaks (I think that’s what they’re called) and an enormous double sprung saddle. Unfortunately, despite being well cared for she did need some renovation. The rubber of the original black tyres was cracked and dry so they’ve been replaced with funky cream Schwalbe ones (www.schwalbe.co.uk/) to match the plastic pedals and handlebar grips. The saddle, sadly (and despite the springs) was too painful to contemplate and has been put into storage. I’m now comfortably ‘resting my laurels’ on my Brooks Team Pro saddle – bliss (www.brooksengland.com).
Whilst I can change tyres and break pads I’m no way near clever enough to know whether a bike’s road worthy or not so my friend TR’s coming round to give her the once-over (https://facebook/LondonBicycleClinic) before we go whizzing (ever so sedately) into the sunset seeking beautiful cycling accessories!
It’s not good reading, but I’ve just spent a bit of time going through the ‘Action’ website to list all our wards, the candidates in them and the support so far. Â If you haven’t yet contacted your candidates through the website, please do. Â If you HAVE contacted them and they aren’t yet supporting, please feel free to harangue them. Â Obviously in a nice polite ‘tinging of the bell’ kind of way. Â Twitter is a good medium for this if you use it!
You may remember that some of the group met up with some Dutch transportation students who were in London to look at cycling in general but specifically at the Bow Roundabout. Â This was the presentation they made of their findings. Â Interesting reading!
An interesting and lively meeting. Â On the formal side we approved an annual report and accounts. Arnold Ridout Â and Kerena Fussell were elected as joint co-ordinatorsand Bill Bremner re-appointed as Treasurer.
We had wide ranging discussions:
Richard outlined the positive future for potentiallyÂ transformative cycle provision, funded from a variety of sources) despite the fact that Newham had not achieved mini-Holland status. Â Still very much on the radar are: Â quietways (Stratford to Ilford, Stratford to East ham, improvements to the Greenway, improvement to the Greenway. Â A new “Roding Way” along the line of the A 406 was being considered; the extension of CS2 to Ilford remained in the lap of TfL; removal of the Stratford gyratory is now on the TfL junctions improvement programme.
Olawale reported on progress on theÂ ward audit.Â Â The intensive series of rides had taken place which has identified over 500 schemes for minor works to improve permeability. Â Cycle contraflows in quiet one way streets dominate, but also there were some significant link-path creation and improvement possibilities. Â There would shortly be a consultation on prioritisation for the Â£100,000 per year funding available over the next three years. Â We will try to make photos available.
We have completed our ward asks for the LCC’sÂ Space for CyclingÂ campaign and everyone was encouraged to use the LCC website to lobby local councillors. Â This should raise the profile of cycling. Â We considered favourably a feeder ride to the “Big Ride” in central London on 17 May. Â An idea for events was to have stalls in markets with Dr Bike.
The first Newham Ride was considered a successful start toÂ our rides season. Â We need to ensure photos are available for future publicity by obtaining consents of even doing a special photo shoot. Â We will fix a late summer autumn version and advertise British Cycling Olympic Park/Lea Valley rides. Â Additionally we will continue with some weekend rides in conjunction with Tower Hamlets and Hackney. Â Our summer meetings will be short evening rides/picnics.
We decided to consider further whether to support theÂ Stop Silvertown TunnelÂ campaign.
Karena outlined progress onÂ communications. Â We will seek to progress further with Twitter feeds, and produce small publicity cards/leaflets which can be left at strategic spots such as the View Tube.
The ride season got off to a good start with over 15 joining in the first Newham Ride. Â Fortunately the weather was excellent and there was improved access to the Olympic Park. Â Having taken a look at the northern section of the Olympic park we moved down the river Lea to Cody Dock where Simon, who runs it, outlined his successes to date in carving out a new riverside community facility and his exciting plans for the future.
We moved down to the River Thames for a lunch break at Trinity Buoy Wharf.
Then through the Royal Docks to Â Thames Barrier Park, with its riverside pavilion and view of the Thames Barrier.
We then wended our way back via Beckton and the Geeway to the View Tube for a wellÂ deserved piece of cake and cup of tea. Â For the majority of the riders there were significant new discoveries and for all of us a pleasant reminder of our interesting borough.