Opinions on Cycle Strategy and it’s implementation

In a recent council meeting (1st October 2015) of the Regeneration, Housing & Sustainability Select Committee Andrew Barr, a council officer who is the Divisional Manager (Highways & Transportation) gave a statement on the cycle strategy of Liverpool. The minutes of that meeting can be found here.

Our member Ian Downing gave this as his opinion to Andrew Barr’s statement.

“Just some random observations. As ever I don’t really know who all these people are and what Andy Barr’s agenda is but looking at the minutes it was odd to see that he reminded us of the targets behind the cycling agenda (10% of journeys, 45,000 people cycling regularly by this December) but didn’t see the meeting as a suitable venue for informing others of progress towards them (I couldn’t find the RAG analysis in the minutes).”

The RAG (That is Red-Amber-Green Analysis) can be found here. Ian goes on to say:

“I felt that the traffic light detection of cyclists to give them a head start at traffic lights related solely to on road provision which is acceptable (just) for cyclists but the targets relate to encouraging people of all ages and abilities to become bicycle users; that 10 second head start will not be very encouraging for parents deciding whether to allow their ten year old to cycle to school. Perhaps they need to unravel their Cycling Strategy priorities as well as the transport modes.
It was nice to hear about the improvements at the Princes Park Roundabout but as I cycle around it, on the road, I just think of it as a roundabout with wide pavements. I don’t recall a champagne buffet at the Baltic Fleet to celebrate its introduction or even being involved in any consultation (it may have been before my time). The description of it as having “clear benefits for cyclists and road users” says a lot. Andy seems to see the two groups as separate but then specifies very little infrastructure that keeps them that way. It was probably a Freudian omission of the word “other” but it may be that he accepts that cyclists use the road but are somehow different from “road users.”
The last point was a complete mess; “there was a questioning of striking the most appropriate balance between differing road users”; were people questioning if striking a balance was the right thing to do or whether we just spend it all on motorists? If the word intended was “question”, great stuff, but why no description of the balance that had been struck? It then goes on to say “Some locations and key arterial routes by their nature were unsuitable for on-street cycling provision and for which works were being undertaken to parallel routes frequented by cyclists to further enhance these and promote further increases in cycling.” Which translates to “We don’t want to detract from Liverpool being an anachronistic example of a city in which one can drive with relative freedom by narrowing or removing traffic lanes, instead we are going to put signs up on quietways that are of little use or interest to anybody because they don’t take them where they want to go”. Remember Liverpool feels that there is no room for segregated provision on a 17m wide single carriageway (Netherfield Road).
Tom Crones questions were useful and sought to shed some light on the realities of the situation.
I found Tim Beaumont’s comments to be apologist but perhaps they represented his concerns as a cyclist rather than as a councillor trying to institute policies that would encourage people to become bicycle users. In fact I couldn’t see why he felt he needed to disclose his interest as a cyclist in the Declaration of Interests when nobody else had declared themselves as motorists, or perhaps they had all walked there. (is he a motorist as well? if so would that imply that he sees motoring as akin to walking, something everyone does?) He, and others, could perhaps do to understand that supporting policies that would encourage the 95% of the population who do not engage in regular functional bicycling to become regular bicycle users would be to everyone’s advantage, even cyclists! It would be interesting to see how well the make up of the council reflects Liverpool’s car ownership demographic (53%); perhaps councillors should make such declarations whenever transport is discussed.


“Share the Road” – Event at Guild Hall

We are having a table at the “Share The Road” event held at the University today. If you come and decide to join our campaign, there might be a little present in it for you, who knows.

Details from the organisers:

Share the Road Event – Thursday 1 October 11.30-2pm

Bring yourself and your bike along to the Guild Walk, University of Liverpool (between Peach Street car park and Mountford Hall)

  • Get on an Arriva bus and see things from the driver’s perspective
  • Have a free bike health check from our Dr Bikes
  • Find out about citybike and our current student discount offers
  • Pick up lots of freebies and information on road safety, bike security and cycling in Liverpool


The MCC google group

We had some requests to join our google group (merseycycle@googlegroups.com). My apologies, I found that the group status had been set ‘ex directory’ – and could not be found by a search.

This has now changed: If you want to join the google group, please follow these steps:

  1. Go to http://groups.google.com and search for ‘merseycycle’.
  2. In the search results, select the group ‘merseycycle’ found at the top of the search results.
  3. Click on the link to ‘subscribe to this group’ and give the email address you want to use to join.
  4. You have to confirm your request to join from your email.
  5. We will receive your request and approve the process – and you’re now a member of the group.

But remember, this forum is foremost meant for members of the campaign. We do consider all applicants, but would encourage you to join our campaign first.

CycleNation Conference comes to Liverpool!

CTC and CycleNation Autumn  Conference

Be part of the largest gathering of cycle campaigners!


Save the date: 24th-25th October 2015

Return to Liverpool and join us for the weekend. Be it for discussion or debate on where & how cycling moves forward in 2016.

Merseyside Cycling Campaign will be host for the CycleNation and CTC autumn conference this year (2015). Cyclenation is a federation of local cycle campaign groups and there to help local groups campaign and to represent them at the national and international level; CTC is the national cycling charity and has championed the cause of cycling for well over a century.

The venue will be Blackburne House, right in heart of the world-renowned Georgian Quarter of Liverpool, for directions follow this link.

We will publish more details (how to book, agenda, social events and rides) here in due course.

The actual conference will be from noon to 6pm on Saturday 24 Oct, at Blackburne House

If you arrive before Saturday, we are planning social drinks on Friday evening, time and venue tbc. There may be a Cyclenation EGM on Saturday morning (TBC) and there will be a meal and social evening on the Saturday evening. We also plan rides for the Sunday.

Please preregister from the CTC website using this link.

Closer to the date we will email you a confirmation of this pre-registration plus information on how to pay the attendance fee.

Proposed Schedule:

09:00-12:00 12:00-13:00 13:00-18:00 18:00-late
Saturday 24th CycleNation EGM Lunch Break CycleNation Conference Social event
Sunday 25th Rides

Online Donations

We now accept payments or donations to the cycling campaign via a simple online bank transfer using GoCardless.com. This is a safe and convenient way to support the campaign.
Unlike commonly used online donation systems like for example PayPal GoCardless.com expects you to type in your sort code and account number instead of a credit or debit card number. The payment is not instant and uses a one-off authorised direct debit transfer but saving us the higher card payment fees. Don’t worry, we will not be able to take further donations from you without your authorisation. Please consult GoCardless.com for further details.

Please find the donation button on the Membership page or use the button to the right.