Meeting of hfcyclists on Tuesday 8th October at the home of John Griffiths
Attending: John Griffiths, Alan Rowden, Milan Desai, Janusz Carmello, Alex Ingram, Suzie Gretz, Ayse Kardes, Sima John, David Marsh,
Apologies: Natasha Herriott, Ken McCosh, Paul Saunderson
1) Welcome to any new members
No new members at this meeting.
2) Ongoing issues
John and Alex noted their requested meeting with the council not settled yet, but should be before end of the year.
Hammersmith Bridge – Group now looking at data about traffic over the bridge, and so a count was discussed. John Griffiths said we need two volunteers to make a successful count. Alex keen we count cyclists on the road and footway as well. Sima and others keen we also count those on the mall (north bank of the Thames). John G suggested we could do with a speed gun, Alex said he had access to one. Timing was discussed and 7:30-9:30 was chosen as a target time, aim to do survey by close of following week. Alex, John and Sima said they were keen to do count at meeting. Alex I also keen that we undertake an east-west axis count somewhere else in borough later this year to complement this north-south axis count.
Superhighway 9 – Alex I recapped situation. Superhighway 9 is/was set to run Hounslow to Hyde Park, via Hammersmith, and would upgrade a key east-west link into town used already heavily used. However, Kensington and Chelsea known to have objections to reworking Kensington High Street, currently a very problematic section of this route. TfL first proposed blue coloured lanes then segregated lanes but seems council against both. TfL approach seems to be that if part of route not possible then whole route cancelled. John G suggested focus shift back to Hammersmith Broadway as primary barrier to cycling in borough on the route, which may be priority. Alex keen that if it failed consideration be given to a linking route from parts of Superhighway 9 route onto Cycle Crossrail (set to land north of Westfield in Shepherd’s Bush/White City).
John G – spoke to council before the meeting. Some progress on TfL LIP money with safer routes to schools to primary and secondary in Wormholt and White City. Also a high level of active modes of children to school. 52% by walking, cycling or by scooter. Sustrans Bike It felt to be working well. Andrew Gilligan (Mayor’s cycling czar) seems keen on sorting the Hammersmith Broadway, and also some potential Quietways in area.
3) Flyunder Summit
Alex I recounted history of the flyover problems and hence apparent local support for a long term replacement and improvement to the Flyover. Fixes to the flyover estimated at £70m which TfL believe would give decades of life. LBHF say Flyunder target date is about 2030. John G and Alex I had attended a stakeholder meeting and input there, and planned to go to Flyunder Summit following day. John G very concerned about the closing of side street access. Others mostly keen to understand more about how it might work, Alex I noted problem is no full designs at this stage, only option selection.
4) Update on website and social media
Alex I had worked extensively on providing a new system to run the website, and increasing our activity on twitter. This was focussed around the last stages of the consultation on Shepherd’s Bush Town Centre West. Now at over 175 followers on twitter and had seen over 300 visitors to the reworked website during the first week including over 200 looking at pages particular to the consultation on Shepherd’s Bush Town Centre West where statistics showed visitors spent an average of five minutes reading our review. Alex I felt that instant result was seen in number and quality of responses to consultation even just those we were aware of such as from Cycle Embassy of Great Britain and AJ.
Milan queried what we were doing with existing content which Alex had said he had kept online. Alex I said that all hits to old content are trackable so popular and dormant pages can be identified and suggested a pruning cleanup in 6-12 months. For now most older pages have clear link to new site.
John G keen that Alex I look for a way to help highlight a broader variety of campaigns on main page, which he took away as an action.
Question raised of what other detail could be on the website, questions raised over a Dr Bike session at town hall which David knew of. May only be for council workers – Alex I offered to check and find out.
Alex I reiterated that any ideas or submissions of good pieces for the website welcome.
5) Space4Cycling and involving the membership
Alex I reminded the group that he added this agenda item based on feedback on the email group from Andrew ?, felt issue was that with new members joining as part of Space4Cycling activity at an LCC level need to ensure we have relevant activity locally to involve new members, including those who can’t make meetings.
Alex I suggested issue of visibility both inside LCC and beyond, website can help with this, but now need to work harder to get into LCC emails and others. Raised question of how can we get more feedback from membership.
Suzie queried lorry safety given that this was the issue that came up so often in discussing safe space. She had seen newer stickers on buses and lorries, but wondered if there is a local campaign we could push which focussed on safety of larger vehicles. Alex I believed that these are likely the TfL supplied stickers which seem now to have a shorter message “Cyclists stay back”, reminded group that council had complied quickly with requests from LCC HQ to promote lorry safety in contracts earlier in year. Training known to be busy locally, but not clear how widely this reached. Milan mentioned the changing places activity at RideLondon and wondered if there was more application of this (experiencing view in cab of a lorry). David concerned about the training of cyclists and how many cyclists seemed to undertake lorries. Alex I concerned that in many places facilities place cyclists on the left of slow or stationary traffic which encouraged this. John G noted he was undertaken twice himself today whilst cycling in cycle lanes, and wasn’t much impressed.
Alex I queried what would be a sensible target or request based on this. John G reckoned council certainly good on contractor lorries, but less so around developers. Idea of requirement on developers who sign Section 106 agreements when proposing major construction. Could this be applied to White City/Westfield? John G reckoned Hackney pursue this. Action taken to write to Richard Evans at council to enquire as to current situation and then plan further.
6) Central LCC matters – AGM
John G asked who had registered for the AGM, currently Alex I, John G and possibly Janusz of those there tonight. Alex I reminded the group that independent as we may feel the motions at AGM are to help set long term goals of LCC and what is expected of hfcyclists.
All motions listed here: http://lcc.org.uk/pages/motions-to-2013-agm.
Extra detail on Motion 3 – When Do We Need Protected Space For Cycling: http://rachelaldred.org/writing/motion-to-lcc-agm-when-do-cyclists-need-protected-space/
Extra detail on Motion 4 – Ward-by-ward campaign: http://lcc.org.uk/articles/looking-ahead-2014-local-elections-campaign
Extra detail on Motion 5 – Uniformity of Cycle Provision: http://www.voleospeed.co.uk/2013/10/motion-for-lcc-agm-uniformity-of.html
Alex I reminded group that there was possibility of proxy voting should people be unable to attend, to do so email email@example.com to appoint either a proxy who is attending or chair to vote. Details needed are name, membership number and intended votes. Deadline of 6PM on Wednesday 16th October.
Trustee voting also closes 6PM on Wednesday 16th October, LCC heavily emailing membership about this: http://lcc.org.uk/articles/board-election-candidates
John G – £10.80 for last quarter of website (Alex I noted final time for this cost, new website now cheaper to host)
plus £16.75 for food
Alex I – £14.57 for drinks
8) Date and venue for next meeting
Alex I reminded group his plan had returned to hosting at John G’s due to Flyunder meeting following night, so keen to host in pub.
Date was agreed as Tuesday 12th November, time and location to be confirmed.
Potential pubs discussed included: Salutation, Rutland, Brook Green and Thatched House.
Concerns from John G and JAnusz among others about keeping cost down and atmosphere/noise. Alex I keen that we test issues in practice and try to encourage a wider attendance at a meeting in an open location.
Alex I mentioned People’s Question Time on the 5th of November, suggesting we raise Superhighway 9. Event in Kensington and Chelsea with Mayor and London Assembly members.
Rich and detailed discussion on Potholes led by Suzie who had tried Alex’s early version of how to repot a pothole via the CTC site linked on the updated website. John G keen that philosophically this should really be the job of the council. How can things be measured directly? Alex I reminded the group that often Thames Water said the larger the fault the less likely it is to be reported. Sima said particular problem with water main in Castlenau confirmed that. Alex I concerned about what is the primary problem for council – budget to fix? Knowledge of holes? S Gretz recounted council claim that Wood Lane checked once a month in response to earlier query. S Gretz also asked can we meet with maintenance team at LBHF? Alex I – We know about Wood Lane, what about other places where potholes need to be filed. John G – Can we have an intensive burst of reporting potholes? Knows he often cycles past potholes, maybe others do too.
RIDES Brainstorm – Need to at least ensure a ride before Christmas, perhaps on the canal? Milan noted he was most keen on group events as a recreational cyclist, mostly riding with the SkyRide people and a group derived from. Rides around 28-60 miles. Janusz also keen on the Wandle route – 12 miles in one direction. Discussion to continue on email where further suggestions most welcome.
Janusz noted he had been given a fine for cycling in the underpass on Park Lane. Discussed if he could dispute this fine, given poor signage. Alex I checked if Westminster LCC had heard of a crackdown and they said no.
Alan R raised concern about antisocial behaviour from kids around the broadway and king street – bikes with no lights. Alan felt a bit threatened by them and worried how others would see this.
Suzie had some cards for Save Our Scrubs – www.saveourscrubs.org.uk – who were concerned about potential viaduct related to Old Oak Common developments.