Category Archives: Campaigning

Support £5million Sustainable Transport Bid

Derby City Council are bidding for £5 million of funding from the Department for Transport for developments in sustainable travel.

To help secure the funding, the project needs letters of support from the people of Derby and from businesses which operate there.

Please write today to Rachel Harvey at the address below to express your support for the project:

Rachel Harvey
Transport Planning Group Manager
Neighbourhood Directorate,
Derby City Council,
Saxon House,
Friary Street,
Derby,
DE1 1AN

The bid covers several themes, engaging with local employers large and small to develop better integrated walking, cycling and public transport initiatives.

Continue reading Support £5million Sustainable Transport Bid

Support the Derby Multi Sports Arena including the Velodrome and Closed Road Cycle Circuit

Deadline: Wed 8th February 2012

The new Derby Multi Sports Arena will be next to Pride Park Stadium and will include a 250m indoor Velodrome and a 1.5km closed road circuit; it is absolutely stunning, inside and out and will be a great local and national attraction. see the inside and the outside

These facilities will enable Cycle Derby to take cycling to many, many more people than before. The closed road circuit will enable off-road cycle training at all standards, as well as offering a sporting challenge to experienced riders.

Children in Derby have flocked in huge numbers to the BMX track, the Cyclo-cross race series and the Basses Rec’ wheeled sports park (BMX tricks and skateboards), and the children have been the bedrock of the growth in cycling in the city; over 7% of our children now cycle to school regularly. The Velodrome and the closed road circuit will add hugely to that growth of a cycling culture.

It is however essential to show explicit support for the Velodrome and closed road circuit. We know that some local politicians would rather spend the money elsewhere. We need to give the planning committee no excuse for not passing the plans in full.

Continue reading Support the Derby Multi Sports Arena including the Velodrome and Closed Road Cycle Circuit

Think twICE – cycling in cold conditions

There is a campaign based in Bristol by LifeCycle to raise awareness of the issues of cycling in icy weather. The aim of the campaign is to highlight the hazards of cycling in icy conditions and to offer information and resources to help cyclists make informed decisions. There are different solutions for the different situations cyclists come up against.

More details (and a request for feedback) can be found here

Folding cycles on buses

Folded Brompton

I regularly take a folded Brompton onto buses in Derby and Nottingham and, until recently, have always found it really easy. However, a couple of recent episodes have caused me problems. These were:

  • I was evicted from the Medilink service (between the 2 hospitals in Nottingham) as the driver said “bikes (folded or not) are not allowed on the service”. I’ve taken this up with the service provider and they have agreed on a policy which allows folding cycles in the future but with a lot of restrictions – e.g. must be in a bag, must be able to be carried in one hand, must be with the passenger at all times, driver has final say, …
  • Trent Barton Red Arrow driver informed me that folded cycles would only be allowed inside the coach if enclosed in a bag. Generally I’m happy to store the bike in the lockers underneath the coaches but Derby bus station now has barriers preventing access to the lockers and some of the Red Arrow coaches have dangerous lockers which cannot be used (and which have been broken for months!). Further discussion with Trent Barton has not resulted in any definitive policy.

In general, I see a general trend from the bus companies in trying to find reasons not to allow the folded cycles onto their services rather than actively trying to encourage more passengers to combine the use of cycles and buses. I hope to see this trend reverse in the near future.

One tip for Brompton users is that the IKEA large blue plastic/fabric bag (cost of 40p each from the checkouts) is large enough to place a folded Brompton into.

I should say that, apart from the recent incident with the Red Arrow, I have found Trent Barton to be very accomodating to me and my folded cycle and hope they can continue this excellent attitude.

Derby Neighbourhood Forums

Derby City Council hold regular Forums to gain feedback from local people on the issues that matter most to them. Details on the planned meetings are here

A great way to engage in local democracy and have an influence. Go and argue the case for cycling at a local level. Even better get on the board for your ward, they have money to spend on local facilities for local people!! If you are able to represent the DCG at any forums then please let the Campaigns Co-ordinator know.

Council Budget Consultation

Derby City Council has published its consultation document for its next three years’ spending.  It is available here.  Now is the time to respond to what it says – or what appears to be missing.  This is the time in the budget-setting process when people are most able to alter what will happen, so although it doesn’t seem exciting, please help to make a difference.

The part of the budget that deals with highways and transport issues is “Neighbourhoods” starting on page 51, but it is helpful to read the ‘Introduction’ as well.  This mentions in section 6 the Council Plan.  Referencing one or more of its aims in your response to the Council may give your comments more weight – and the council officers and councillors more pause for thought.  Of particular relevance to cycling might be “A thriving sustainable economy”and “Good health and well-being”.

The budget (see the table on page 56) includes a cut of over £500,000 from the highways maintenance budget and a promise to replace £500,000 of this from the highways capital budget (see not on page 60).  This will mean that there is less money for small scale improvement schemes.

Also of particular note are the final two paragraphs under ‘Budget Prioritisation’ on page 53 which really says that some services will not be able to be provided due to reductions in the Local Transport Plan funding unless we get Sustainable Transport Fund money – the bid for this has not yet even been written.  With reference to this point it is worth asking the council to ensure that there is funding for cycle training and travel planning in schools, to help meet the ‘aims’ mentioned above.  The cut to road safety work might also be mentioned here (page 60)

You may also be concerned about the further cut of £50,000 to the Climate Change Unit (page 58) which had in the past been able to run events like Ecofest and has done a lot of work to cut the Council’s fuel bills, including by pushing for a council travel plan.

Of course it’s fine saying ‘don’t cut this’, but the budget does need to balance.  Where might extra money be found, or other savings made?  They proudly state that street lights won’t be switched off (which some other councils are now doing during the early hours), but should this be reviewed?  They don’t intend increasing Council Tax, is this the right decision. 

The online consultation form is here, but you can also write or email to your local councillors directly, which will carry more weight (as not many people do this!).  If you do, it would be wise also to copy in the Strategic Director of Resources, Roger Kershaw.