The Great Derby Get Together is a bike ride from the Riverside Gardens behind Derby Council House to Elvaston Castle, in celebration of the life of Jo Cox, in conjunction with National Bike Week, National Clean Air Day, Refugee Week, and The Big Lunch. It brings together multiple faiths and cross party politics with families who enjoy riding their bikes and celebrating the things which we all have in common.
The event was instigated at the suggestion of the Derby Multi Faith Centre, and many local policiticans including the new Mayor of Derby, have signed up to come for a ride and have a picnic at Elvaston Castle. We hope that you will be able to come as well; it is free, just bring a picnic and join in the celebrations. It would be great to have a big crowd to show support for one or more of the associated campaigns, for cycling as transport, or just to enjoy a sociable day in the saddle.
Life Cycle UK is a registered charity that has been transforming lives through cycling since 1999 and now seeks 2 freelance national standards cycle instructors for Derby City area. If you are interested check out the vacancies on https://www.lifecycleuk.org.uk/jobs
We are delighted to announce that the Derby Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, which runs Royal Derby Hospital and other health services in the city, is enthusiastically endorsing our Space for Cycling campaign, supporting our aims to get better cycling routes and facilities across Derby to enable more people to choose to make everyday journeys by bike.
We are very grateful that our local NHS Trust recognises the benefits that Space for Cycling can bring and for Chief Executive, Gavin Boyle’s supporting comments: “Hundreds of our staff cycle to work in our hospitals each day, and it’s important that we have the proper infrastructure to support that. As a cyclist myself I know the roads in Derby can be a little scary when you’re out on your bike, so improvements to the network would be very welcome indeed. Let’s make it easier for everyone to get on their bike to travel around our city, rather than see them discouraged because they feel unwelcome on the roads.”
The Carbon and Sustainability Group at the Trust enthusiatically endorsed our campaign when it was presented to them by Andrea Shaw from their travel planning team. The Chief Executive, Gavin Boyle, uses a mixed-mode transport to get to work: bike-train-bike, so his sustainable travel credentials are high; his Brompton was tucked neatly in the corner of his office on a cold and frosty morning at the end of December, when he kindly met Ian Dent and myself to hear about the Space for Cycling campaign. We look forward to working with the NHS Trust and the City Council in the future to create more space for cycling in Derby and enable more people to get more healthy by making more everyday journeys by bike.
Exercise helps mental wellbeing as well as physical health so cycling can be an integral part of a rounded, healthy, life style. However, many people are too frightened to ride a bike on the road. We need better quality facilities to help cyclists feel safe enough to get about. Our Space for Cycling campaign urges city councillors to give cycle transport a higher priority and make policies which enable a proper cycle network to be created in Derby, one which is joined up and enables anyone to cycle anywhere more safely across the city. The support of our local NHS Trust is important to us for raising the profile of active travel with our councillors.
It is our very great pleasure to announce that Martin Rawson, the deputy leader of Derby City council has signed our Space for Cycling pledge – agreeing with us that more needs to be done to improve cycle transport in the city. Derby is a city which is very much suited to cycling and very many more people would cycle if the cycle network was more connected and of a better quality. At the moment it is unfortunate that too many people say and believe it is too dangerous to cycle on the road. At DCG we don’t believe this is true, but the road often feels like a hostile place, especially to inexperienced riders or to people considering whether to start cycling and that stops people cycling.
We look forward to working with Martin to help make things better for everyone who wants to make everyday journeys by bike. Our aim is to get full, cross-party, support for our Space for Cycling campaign. So far UKIP, Liberal Democrat and Labour members have signed our pledge. We look forward to Conservative members joining them and completing the picture so we can start developing new strategies and projects with the certainty that they will have long term political support.
Local authorities have been awarded 1.1bn to spend on local roads by chancellor Philip Hammond.
Derby Cycling Group urge Derby City Council to allocate their share of these funds to make a difference to all road users in Derby. Congestion, potholes and pollution are all caused by the number of cars on our roads. Cars are here to stay, but congestion, potholes and pollution can all be improved by enabling more people to travel around the city without a car. We urge that a proportion of Derby’s funding is used to enable more people to cycle for local journeys, thus reducing road congestion, potholes and pollution. There are a large number of people in Derby who would like to cycle because it will make them fitter and more healthy, or to save money, or for environmental reasons, but who don’t cycle because they find the road environment, in their eyes, too hazardous. We urge the leaders of all political parties on the city council to support these people by making Derby’s road network better able to support those people who want to cycle as well as those who want to drive.
Derby City Council is proposing a high quality, segregated cycle lane along Ascot Drive and are asking for comments via a survey. Please do the survey and give feedback to enable a really good route to be created here, but also make sure they know that cyclists want really good routes to cover all the major roads in Derby.
Closing date: Tuesday 15th November.
I don’t use Ascot Drive as a commuting route, but I do from time to time use my bike to go to businesses along that road, so I support this idea, despite the off-road Canal Path running parallel and close to Ascot Drive. So long as the new route is good quality, giving cyclists travelling along the road the right of way at all side roads and site entrances, I would use any such cycle lane or path where provided. I use Mercian Way on the new inner ring road, where the off-road path is a much more pleasant, relaxing ride than going on the road its self and just as convenient.
The final survey question asks for your comments on provision of more segregated cycle lanes in Derby; that is your chance to make the point that every major road needs dedicated, safe, space for cyclists if the city is to enable more cycling, thus reducing congestion and traffic pollution.
I understand the Ascot Drive cycle lane will be part of a new cycle route linking the Riverside Path near the Velodrome, with Infinity Park, via Wilmorton Link, Ascot Drive, Campbell St, Moor Lane and Wilmore Road.
I would like to say a huge thank you to the 60 or so people who came out in Derby today to show their support for Derby Cycling Group’s campaign to make the city a better place by creating more space for cycling. Some of those people you can see here.
Thank you too to the hundreds of facebook shares and thousands of tweets which have spread the word of our quest far and wide.
Thank you to the ride organisers: Daryl, Andrea and Dave who I know about with Ian D managing the backroom work, and all our support riders on the day.
Finally, thank you too to the people of Derby who were out in town today and waved to us as we passed by; I think the disruption was minimal but our apologies for anybody who was inconveienced by our procession through the town.
As Paul Hilditch has commented on the Facebook Event: it was great to see such a diverse range of people on the ride: young and old, women and men, people in everyday clothes and one or two MAMILS for good measure; we all cycle; we share the same issues and we share our love of cycling.
Please stay with us and encourage more to join in our campaign as we take Derby’s Space for Cycling to the next level.
Please read what we have said, and what we have asked councillors to pledge support for. Alan Graves from UKIP and Ruth Skelton from the Liberal Democrats have signed our pledge; thank you very much to both of them.
We would like Matthew Holmes from the Conservatives and Ranjit Banwait from Labour to do the same. We would like a cross party consensus to take cycle transport in Derby to a new level.