Pedal Press

Winter 1997

CCN Conference a big Success

Campaigners from all over Britain came to Liverpool in October to attend the National CCN Conference. Our own Professor Lewis Lesley gave the keynote speech "British Cycling Policy; A Comparison with European Best Practice." in which we heard how our European neighbours were amazed by the fundamental errors that British designers have made in laying out cycle paths. We all know the kind of thing - trees in the middle of paths, those hopelessly twisting corners, being bundled out into 3 lanes of traffic at right angles to the flow, and most of all, how the paths simply disappeared in situations where they where most needed, but provision was deemed to be "too hard" (read expensive). Lewis also linked falling accident rates to the provision of better cycling routes. This all sounds good doesn't it? I hope you'll agree, and I hope you'll want to hear more when you attend our AGM where there will be a more detailed report.

Meantime, here is a small selection of photographs from the day: Give yourselves a big hand!

A big thank you to all our members who were generous enough to offer accommodation during the recent National Conference weekend. All our visitors were found a bed and the weekend went swimmingly as a result. I enjoyed speaking to so many of you on the telephone - everyone was so encouraging and helpful. Thanks to everyone for rallying around, in whatever way, great or small.

Carol FitzPatrick.

Bromptons on Parade

Explaining the bus mounted bike rack.

The rack itself (there were no buses to hand!)

Sefton MBC's CyberBike in action.

Sefton MBC's Cyberbike in action.

St Helens Unitary Development Plan

This article was written for the previous issue, but was mysteriously lost in your editor's monstrously efficient filing system.

This plan is nearing its final form after nearly four years since we received the Draft Plan. At each stage of consultation our comments have led to changes. Following objections to the deposit draft plan, an Inspector held an Inquiry. He proposed various changes, and the council proposed amendments to these; We were the consulted a second time, and this time made 2 amendments, both of which have been accepted in principle by the council.

One alteration we suggested concerns places where it would not be appropriate to require a developer to provide on-site car-parking, and they may be required instead to make a payment to improve public transport serving the development. Our suggestion allows an alternative requirement to support the provision of cycle routes serving the site.

One of the transport policies of the Plan is to encourage greater provision for cycling. Originally this was only for recreation and commuting, but as a result of our comment, it will also be for travel to schools and shopping areas.

Our representation will enable more money to be obtained to support cycling for most purposes. The Plan is expected to be in force sometime in 1998.

Roland Graham.

International News

Our new International Reporter - Carol FitzPatrick - recently found herself in Dublin, and managed to find the time to read the local papers and sent me news of a super new cycle scheme in Dublin. 81 Miles - yes thats 81 miles of cycle lanes are planned to be in place by 2015, but the first 4 routes are being built this year at a cost of £15m - seems a lot? Ah, well they're allowing something called a Quality Bus Corridor to share the cycle lanes! There are big plans afoot, and if the traffic congestion can be reduced for such a relatively small sum of money, then there will be some happy faces in the treasury as well as on the cyclists.

Dublin Evening Herald.

Runcorn Cycle Map

Runcorn has produced a nice big colourful poster map of the towns cycle routes. Copies are available from Anna Geroni 01244 603617, or Steve Johnson 0151 424 2061.

Mersey Ferry Cyclists Christmas Dinner

This annual festive binge is being held on Saturday December 13th at 12 noon, at the Seven Stars in Thornton Hough, so with a fair wind and a clean set of pedals you should be able to attend our AGM in the morning and get over in time for the Christmas Pud at the 7 Stars. Please contact Jason Contain - 15 Gorsefield Close, Bromborough, Wirral L62 6BU.

On the rails

The well recorded problems of cycles on trains (ie you can't take em!) Is being examined by various organisations before the Governments White Paper on curbing congestion is released in the Spring. Bikerail is an organisation which aims to set up cycle hire at key tourist railway stations (eg Bath and Moreton in the Marsh) where visitors can arrive by train, hire a bike for the day or longer and return the machine before they leave. While this scheme seems like a good idea at first glance, critics are worried that it will be a good excuse for Train Operating Companies to ignore the needs of those who wish to travel with there own trusty steeds.

We may also see an increase in the Copenhagen style of hire scheme where bikes can be hired in the same way as you get shopping trolleys in some places - coin in the slot locks.


AGM Agenda

This years AGM will be held at the Third Room on the Everyman Bistro, Hope Street Liverpool, at 10:30 am on Saturday December 13th. This venue has several advantages - its large, convenient and has excellent food and drink - so come and join us for a natter and stay for a bite afterwards.



Minutes of Previous AGM

Reports from Area Groups (including targets for the coming year)

Reports from Officers (including targets for the coming year)

Overview of CCN Conference

Election of officers.