Friar Gate Cycle Lanes – Write to Michael Gove & Therese Coffey
| Derby City Council have submitted their outline business case for their clean air strategy to the Dept for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) – and it still includes the removal of cycle lanes on Friar Gate as part of the plan. DEFRA are reviewing the outline business case right now.|
Derby Cycling Group have asked DEFRA to reject that part of the outline business case which relates to removal of cycle lanes and asked that all existing cycling and walking infrastructure be retained or improved, but not removed. (Open Letter to Michael Gove)
Can you please help to put pressure on DEFRA to accept our arguments by writing to Michael Gove, Therese Coffey, two other influential government ministers and Derby’s MPs.
It is best if you can write a letter or e-mail in your own words, however you can use the template below as a guide. If you use the template, add your own words at the beginning to say why you want the cycle facilities on Friar Gate to be retained.
Michael Gove (Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
Therese Coffey (Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at DEFRA with responsibility for air qualilty)
Jesse Norman (Minister of State at the Dept for Transport with responsibility for cycling)
Matt Hancock (Secretary of State for Health and Social Care)
Chris Williamson (in whose constituency the cycle facilities lie)
Remember that if this space is lost for cycling, it will be lost for ever.
Please do all you can to help keep it.
….. Letter Template…..
Send e-mails to the departmental addresses, marked “For Attention Of” or “FAO” :
Michael Gove (DEFRA leader) firstname.lastname@example.org
Therese Coffey (DEFRA, air quality) email@example.com
Jesse Norman (DfT responsibility for cycling) POCorrespondence@dft.gsi.gov.uk
Matt Hancock (Health and Social Services) upload letter via: https://contactus.dh.gov.uk/
Send postal letters to the MPs above at
House of Commons
Dear Mr Gove and Dr Coffey,
I urge you to reject Derby City Council’s proposal to remove important cycle-safety infrastructure on Friar Gate as part of the city’s Clean Air Proposal because ….
<add your own text here, this is important for your letter to be taken more seriously>
I agree with Derby Cycling Group’s assessment that:
- The removal of a cycle lane on Friar Gate to create two motor vehicle lanes as part of Derby’s clean air proposal is totally unacceptable.
- The cycle lane is present because it provides a safe haven for cyclists to access a bike-and-buses-only section of street; if it is removed cyclists will have to ride into a faster lane of traffic to gain access to it, at greater personal risk.
- The removal of protected space will make it more dangerous for cyclists wishing to turn right into Vernon St.
- Cycling is a very clean form of transport and must not be penalised by a project which purports to improve air quality. Fewer people will cycle on Friar Gate if the cycle lane is removed, which is an unbelievably bad ambition for a clean air strategy. It is perverse to make cycling less easy and more dangerous as part of a project which has the objective of making air cleaner.
- It is also perverse to make it easier for more motor vehicles to use Friar Gate as part of a project to make air cleaner; emissions are bound to rise which is another poor deliverable from this ill-conceived clean air proposal.
- The plan to remove cycle infrastructure runs against much government and local policy (the governments Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy, the DfT’s Cycle Proofing working group; Derby’s fledgling Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan, City Council-run Cycle Derby’s local initiatives to promote cycle transport, especially to children).
- The cycling facilities on Friar Gate and the roads leading to it must be improved so that more people can use them, which would really help to reduce emissions.
- MORE cycling and walking should be a cornerstone of Derby’s clean air strategy and it must certainly NOT make cycling or walking worse or more dangerous.
- The City Council have suggested that cyclists should
use an off-road cycle path on the opposite side of Friar Gate to avoid the
road danger, but the off-road path is:
- Very poor quality
- Cannot be accessed safely because access requires a right turn off Friar Gate
- Does not go all the way into the city centre
- An inconvenient, discontinuous and devious route – we already have a convenient, safe, direct, and complete route which needs to be retained or further enhanced.
- This will increase the severance of the communities on either side of what will now be four lanes of motorised traffic.
- There are strong objections to this proposal from local residents as well as professionals inside and outside the council.
- This proposal would not pass a fair safety audit.
<if by e-mail, your address or at least post code>