Cycleways’ AGM at the Fat Pug 14th November 2018

Chairman’s Address 2018

This year has one of ups and downs.  It didn’t start on a good note when the WCC showed plans to  create a roundabout at the Stoneleigh Junction of A46.  Initially there were no cycle facilities at all.   After some feedback they did include some shared use cycle paths around one side of the  roundabout.  Cyclists and pedestrians would then need to take their lives in their hands to try and  cross the slip roads entering and exitting the A46. They then had the gall to claim that they had  improved the junction by providing cycling facilities when the junction is currently fairly safe for  cyclists with all the slip roads on give ways.  After more feedback they finally added signal controlled  crossings for the slip roads.  This is better, but it is disappointing (but typical) that provision for  cyclists is not included at the start of the project as a matter of course.  The end result in his case is  tolerable, but not particularly direct and  will involve waiting for crossings to change.  With a budget  of over £20 million you would think that a little more spending would allow a dedicated cycle bridge    allowing a direct and continuous journey by bicycle.

The Stoneleigh Junction scheme is symptomatic of the County Council’s view that cycling is not  central to policy and a solution many current problems such as congestion, air pollution and general  lack of exercise, but rather something they have put up with the least amount of effort.  Hopefully  this is changing.  The Greens and Lib-Dems presented a motion to try to get the council to guarantee  funding for cycling.  The motion was not accepted as presented, but a motion was passed promising  to encourage cycling and to look at providing funding.  A small step forward perhaps?

As the year went we saw the completion or near completion of a couple of useful schemes filling  breaks in existing routes.  The extension of the Myton Road scheme beyond the Charter Bridge to  the Banbury Road now allows the link to the Gallows Hill and Warwick Technology Park. Another  scheme is the Hampton road and the racecourse in Warwick where after some negotiation the  Canter Down has been resurfaced and a short  stretch of cycle lane on Hampton Road fill in another  bit of the Aylesford to  Woodloes route.  

There were other developments that may not have made sense such as the cycle route on Priory  Road in Warwick with no proper way to get to it and out of it. However this is a work in progress and  later phases should address these problems.   

We have been sitting on the Cycle Forum which is the way WCC ‘consult’  the public.  The  attendance has not been very good, but it is good that we have had two County Councillors who are  both supportive of cycling, Cllr. Bill Gifford and Cllr John Holland.  The Cycle Forum has provided us  with some information on upcoming schemes including the developments along Europa way  

At our stall at the Peace Festival we had a lot of interest in what we do and what schemes are  coming along. and of course provided lots of information about where to cycle.  We were promoting  the dangers of air pollution, particularly particulates and the benefits of cycling.  It seem most  people have got the message, but still many see cycling as a leisure activity rather than a practical  means of transport. However, it still shows there is plenty of interest in cycling which we need to  build on.  

We have had a fund from the North Leamington to train children cycling.  It has proved surprisingly  difficult to spend this money, but we have managed to provide Lillington School with a funds to pay  for cycling training.

Chairman

Treasurer’s Report – copies were distributed to all those present, andapproved unanimously.

 Election of Officers:

  • Chairman re-elected.
  • Secretary re-elected.
  • Treasurer/Membership Secretary re-elected
  • Newsletter Editor re-elected

The AGM was followed by presentations by three WCC officers of proposals for Warwick, and the developments west of Europa Way, south of Leamington. For a cycle route between Warwick and Leamington along the Emscote Road to the junction with Prince’s Drive, Cycleways has been given a “blanksheet of paper” and asked to put forward their ideas, based on user experience.


Next meeting: Wednesday 14 November 2018

The next meeting is our AGM.  All welcome.

Wednesday 14 November 2018 at 19.30, upstairs at The Fat Pug, Guys Cliffe Road, Leamington Spa, CV32 5BZ.

Cycleways meeting at the Fat Pug 10th October 2018

Newsletter: It was agreed that the bar chart for the accounts, and the item on Cycling on pavements could be made clearer. Sorting this with the aim of getting the final draft, for distribution, by the end of this week.

Cycle Parking within Warwick District- will respond to the enquiry from WDC.

WDC Air Quality and Planning proposal by WDC – had sent out a copy of his 3rd draft to all, today, comments to him by the end of the week, please. A doctor  highlighted the weakness of the proposal in not recognising the danger of particulates outside of AQMAs, since high concentrations can occur in queuing traffic, and of particular concern is outside of schools.

Cycle Training – the Royal Leamington Spa Cycle Club have been given a grant by the North Leamington Community Forum to enable them to expand their cycle training for young people, drawn from Lillington and Sydenham.

Invite to Stephen Rumble and Margaret Smith to outline the provision of cycling along Europa Way and in Warwick Town, suggested after our AGM, to organise.

Cycleways’ brochure – There was broad agreement to up-grade the brochure along the lines of the new Leamington Society one. Will investigate costs. It was suggested that we make use of the £270 left over from the original cycle training fund.

Northumberland Road – The reason for the build outs from Beverly Rd is to provide drivers with clearer sight lines, not obstructed by the trees, exiting on to Northumberland Rd. Most cyclists seem happy with the arrangement.

Visit by Cllr Kristie Naomi had to be cancelled at the last minute due to a WDC requirement over running.

Cycle Forum meeting 9th Oct report

Hampton Street and route via the Racecourse stand,-WCC have extended the shared use path along Hampton St, but a new gate to access the Racecourse path, lighting and signing are still needed.

A46 access path to Warwick Parkway – WCCwill seek permission from Highways England and also see if they could pay for it out, apparently they have a cycle fund.

Cycle route signage – The Lib/Dem councillors plus Cllr Chilvers have all agreed to fund the signage out of their Delegated Funds, now waiting for WCC to agree on the routes.

Myton Rd extension from the Toucan X to the Banbury Rd. South side on road cycle lane, north side shared use path. National Grid representative thinks it is all good.

 

K2L/HS2

Following our letter 30th August to Cllr Gifford highlighting the potential of HS2 funding, WCC have agreed to apply to HS2 with an expression of interest. This would be to fund the section of route from Leamington to the Bericote roundabout, the junction just prior to the Chesford Bridge.

Next meeting: Wednesday 10 October 2018

The next meeting is:

Wednesday 10 October 2018 at 19.30, upstairs at The Fat Pug, Guys Cliffe Road, Leamington Spa, CV32 5BZ.

Summary of Cycleways meeting at the Fat Pug 12th September 2018

Newsletter: Passed around draft copies of a Autumn Newsletter. It looks good, and includes the necessary details of the AGM

AGM  14th November: Current officers are happy to continue, other than Membership Secretary who announced that they would like to stand down as Membership Secretary due to other commitments.  All nominations should be received by 7th November.

It was agreed that we would try to get through the AGM quickly, and invite WCC planning officers, to give progress report on the Europa Way cycle route and the Warwick TC. Action – to invite Stephen and Margaret.

HS2 potential funding for K2L

Please find attached a copy of the letter that I wrote to Cllr Gifford. I thought that I had copied all you in, but I cannot find the copy e-mail, hence another copy to you all. Having received it, Cllr Gifford phoned me to confirm that he would be pursuing this with Cllr Geoff Clarke, the Portfolio Holder for transport, and with Mark Ryder the head of WCC transport and economic planning, I’ll keep you posted on any progress.

A46 Stonleigh roundabout:

On 30th I circulated to all of you a copy of a drawing from WCC showing Toucans for crossing the slip roads. However, no provision had been included for crossing Dalehouse lane at the roundabout at the foot of Gibbet Hill.

As will be seen from the drawing, the roundabout has flared or dual exit/entry roads, which are bad news for cyclists. So, I had another meeting with the WCC engineer for the scheme, to see what improvements were possible. Not a lot, because Dalehouse Lane will be 50 mph. A Toucan X would have to be installed some way along the road from the roundabout, and such a location would necessitate planning permission, making for unacceptable delays to the scheme, the whole project has to be completed within the next 2 years to meet HS2 needs.

The other item that I queried was the provision of the off road to on road transition, both for anyone wishing to head off along Dalehouse Lane, or for a cyclist heading up Gibbet Hill. What I was looking for was the protected type of transition as used at the Toucan X in Old Warwick Road, outside of the Vitsoe factory.

For Dalehouse Lane with its 50 mph, such an arrangement is not possible. For Gibbet Hill, engineer will see if a protected transition could be fitted in, failing that, cross hatched lines to “push” vehicles further out away from the cyclist joining the carriageway.

Conclusion:  WCC should at an early stage in the design/planning of a scheme take into account cyclists needs, a matter which I have taken up with Cllr Davies.

WDC car parking: outlined the e-mail received from WDC, and will respond appropriately.

Air Quality and Planning: WDC have sent to Cycleways a draft copy of their proposed plan, Air Quality and Planning, for comment. As pointed out, it may be full of fine words but it lacks specific targets and measures to hold developers accountable. Before our next meeting I’ll talk to Dave Barber, head of WDC planning to see how the proposal could be considerably be tightened. If I can sort something out sooner, I’ll let you know.

AOB Please note that Kristie Naomi, WDC Cllr, is coming to our next meeting.

Date of next meeting 10th October