Cycle Campaign News August 2016

Wave the flag for Space for Cycling!

Cycle Campaign News August 2016

Cycling UK's monthly round-up of cycle campaign news:

From the Editor

In this month's Campaign News, help impress on local politicians how important Space for Cycling is to you by using our re-launched sign-up tool (see Headlines). There's some Space for Cycling Roadshows from October onwards on offer as well (Diary dates).

Also, if you live in Wales, there's now an easy way of registering your interest in helping to draw up your council's local walking and cycling maps. And, please do take our Off-road Cycling Survey covering both England and Wales (Other stories).

Obviously, we want local councils to encourage cycling, not do their best to protect the public from it as an 'undesirable activity', which is how Mansfield and Newport seem to view it. We hope to persuade them to reverse their ill-conceived town centre cycling bans. (Headlines).

Cherry Allan,
Campaign News​

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In this issue:

Headlines: ask your councillors to support Space for Cycling; want to improve things for cycling in Wales? Cycling bans in Mansfield and Newport; Cycling UK invites applications for trustee roles. 

Other stories: take our Off-road Cycling Survey; private prosecution seeks justice for Michael; latest quarterly road casualty stats; higher and higher for London's Santander cycles; Wheels for Wellbeing publishes inclusive cycling policy; TfL offers grants to get more people cycling; Cycle-Rail Awards open for entries.

Act now: take our off-road survey​; ask your local councillors to support Space for Cycling; get involved in mapping local walking and cycling networks in Wales; Cycle-Rail Awards - nominate now.

New publication: collection of reliable evidence on the economic benefits of cycling.

Diary dates: Cycle to Work Day (14 September); Transforming London Streets (23 September); Bike Share Conference (4-5 October); Space for Cycling Roadshows (from 22 October onwards).


Ask your councillors to support #Space4Cycling

Campaigns are rarely won without political will, so if you’d like to tell your local councillors how important better cycling conditions are to you, our re-launched #Space4Cycling sign-up tool is a quick way to contact them.

The more messages councillors get from their constituents, the more impressed they’ll be by the level of public backing for Space for Cycling. The tool also asks councillors to pledge their support and, if they do, their responses are publicised online to help local people identify cycle-friendly decision-makers.  

Space for Cycling's aim is to transform Great Britain’s roads so that anyone can cycle anywhere. Local pressure and input from campaign groups - who are crucial to success - have already won some key victories.   

Live in Wales and want to improve things for cycling?

If you live in Wales, there’s now an easy-to-use web tool to help you let your local authority know that you’d like to get involved with drawing up maps of new and improved local cycling and walking routes in your neighbourhood.  

The tool was launched by Welsh Government Minister Rebecca Evans AM earlier this month, and will help ensure that authorities engage with local residents over their long-term plans for walking and cycling networks, as required under the ground-breaking Active Travel (Wales) Act. Working closely with Living Streets, Sustrans Cymru and Welsh Cycling, Cycling UK built, financed and is maintaining the tool.

Protecting the public from cyclists?

What do the sale of psychoactive substances, dog fouling and cycling have in common? According to Mansfield District Council (MDC), they're all anti-social activities that need to be banned.

MDC has prohibited cycling at all times of the day and night from what it describes as a pedestrianised market area and various surrounding streets. To do this, they’ve taken advantage of new powers under the Anti-social Behaviour Crime and Policing Act 2014 and issued a Public Space Protection Order (PSPO), which enables them to ban certain types of undesirable behaviour within a geographically defined area.

Cycling UK can hardly believe that MDC thinks that it's entirely reasonable to target cycling with legislation designed to restrict activities that have a detrimental effect on the quality of life.

The Cyclists' Defence Fund (CDF, a charity set up by Cycling UK in 2001) is now considering challenging this PSPO, along with others that ban cycling elsewhere.

  • Road Safety and Legal Officer, Duncan Dollimore, looks in detail at the legal peculiarities of the Mansfield case in his blog.  

News that Gwent Police intended to enforce a ban on cycling across eleven streets in Newport’s city centre set Duncan off on another trail, this time featuring the fearsome menace of wheelies, legal oddities to do with a Traffic Regulation Order, and a signage muddle.

Cycling UK needs YOU

Cycling UK is looking for trustees to help us fulfil our mission of championing cycling for everyone and build on our influential 138-year pedigree.

  • Our application pack explains what we are looking for or, if you prefer a chat, please call Sue Cherry on 01483 238302. Closing date for receipt of CV and covering letter is 9am 31 August 2016.

Other stories

Take our Off-road Cycling Survey

​Inspired by the real interest from the cycling community in our Trails for Wales campaign, Cycling UK is again teaming up with off-road advocacy group, Open MTB, to launch a survey aiming to identify what, if anything, is preventing people from enjoying off-road cycling in both England and Wales.

Whether it is the difficulty of reaching an off-road area from your front door or a lack of good routes and trail centres in your local area, Cycling UK wants to hear the thoughts and experiences of as many off-road riders as possible.

In particular, we want to address the understandable frustrations and confusion caused by England and Wales’ archaic Rights of Way laws.

  • ​Take the survey now - there's a chance to enter a prize draw

Private prosecution seeks justice for Michael

Following the failure of the police and justice system to prosecute the driver involved in the death of cyclist Michael Mason in 2014, Cycling UK’s Cyclists' Defence Fund (CDF) has begun a private prosecution. 

The driver, Gail Purcell (58) of St Albans, has received a summons to attend Westminster Magistrates’ Court in early September for the offence of causing death by careless driving contrary to section 2B of the Road Traffic Act 1988.

London teacher Michael (70), was cycling north on Regent Street from Oxford Circus in London on 25 February 2014 when he was hit from behind by a black Nissan Juke driven by Ms Purcell. As a consequence, he sustained a serious injury to his brain and died 19 days later. 

CDF thanks every one of the 1,500+ supporters who helped raise over £60,000 towards the costs of this case. Without their help, this private prosecution and the Mason family’s ongoing struggle for justice wouldn’t have been possible.

Quarterly stats show slight KSI drop for cyclists

Reported road casualty figures just released for the first quarter of 2016 show that, in the year ending March 2016, the number of killed or seriously injured (KSI) cyclists fell slightly by 3% when compared with the same period the year before. There was, however, an increase in pedestrian and car occupant KSI.

Fatalities amongst all road users remained static while traffic levels rose by 1.8%, meaning that the fatality rate per billion vehicle miles went down by 2%. In terms of absolute numbers, slight casualties fell a little, although this could reflect a shift towards reporting casualties as serious rather than slight through a new centralised system called CRASH (Collision Recording and Sharing) that some police forces have started to use.

Cycling UK's project work gets more people cycling

While 76 bike recycling centres are making sure that Cycling UK’s Big Bike Revival is in full swing in England, our Revival team in Scotland is all ready to roll in September and October. 

Also, Cycling UK’s Community Cycling Club project has just totted up its 2015-16 results, and is happy to report that it’s helped well over 20,000 people overcome their personal barriers to cycling.

Community Cycle Clubs organise and participate in a regular cycling activity for the benefit of their existing members, or as a service to the wider community. The activity can be on-road, off-road, cycle maintenance or even arts-based.

Our 2016-17 projects are well under way working with existing clubs and establishing new ones.

Wheels for Wellbeing publishes inclusive cycling policy

Read the Manifesto for an Inclusive Cycling Policy from Wheels for Wellbeing, a charity that supports disabled people of all ages to enjoy the benefits of cycling. They run drop-in cycling sessions across south London, along with campaigning nationwide for the recognition and removal of barriers to cycling for disabled people.

TfL offers grants to help more people cycle

Transport for London is inviting community groups and not-for-profit organisations to apply for grants of up to £10,000 over a three-year period to help build the confidence of infrequent or new cyclists from all backgrounds, and increase the uptake of cycling by those under-represented in cycling.

The funding is for initiatives such as cycle training, bike maintenance courses and guided rides.

Higher and higher for London's Santander cycles

July was a proud month for London's Santander cycle hire scheme. A record 1,188,428 bikes were hired, beating the previous highest month of 1,183,182 bikes in July 2014. Also, the weekend of July 30 and 31, when masses of cyclists coursed through the capital for Prudential RideLondon, saw an unprecedented 92,527 hires, beating the previous record from May this year of 89,833.

The scheme also boasts: more than 52 million journeys since its launch in July 2010; 11,500 bikes; 785 docking stations with 21,083 docking points from Camden Town in the north to Battersea in the south, and from Stratford in the east to Shepherd's Bush in the west.

Some light at the end of the tunnel for Eurostar cyclists

Earlier this month, Cycling UK together with our transport consultant David Holladay, visited Eurostar’s London office to talk about facilitating cycle carriage. We were following up on the conversations we had with them on the back of our 'Zero Stars for Eurostar' campaign.

We've managed to resolve many of the issues reported in the last edition of Campaign News, including the problems caused by the fact that all cycle spaces were filled up till November. Booking can now continue.

Better yet, we’ve convinced Eurostar of the need to smooth the booking process, and cyclists now have the flexibility to book their machines on with EuroDespatch (the organisation which transports oversized luggage) before buying their tickets. More changes will roll out over the coming months, and Cycling UK will report back fully on all the changes as they come into force.

  • Are you a Eurostar bike-rail customer? If so, please let us know how it goes via Reports from people travelling on the service have helped inform our campaigning so far, and are invaluable when it comes to monitoring progress. Thanks in advance.

Cycle-Rail Awards 2016 open for entries

It’s time to send in your nominations or entries for the Rail Delivery Group’s 2016 Cycle-Rail Awards, sponsored by Cyclepods.

The awards, which have been going for twelve years now, recognise progress made by the rail industry and associated organisations towards encouraging integrated cycle-rail travel. The idea is to spread best practice across the industry. There are ten categories, ranging from a photography competition to Station of the Year. 

  • Awards (deadline 9 September)

Air quality awards open too is calling for entries to the 2016 National Air Quality Awards (UK). Categories include local authority air quality initiative of the year and air quality champion.

For an idea of how serious air pollution is in urban areas, take a look at a new infographic from a Danish company converting the air people breathe in cities all over the world into the equivalent number of inhaled cigarettes per person. Zabol in Iran heads the list at a choking 300 cigarettes a month, but a whole 21 in London doesn't sound too good either. 

Velo-city 2017: call for papers

The ECF (European Cyclists' Federation) is now calling for abstracts of papers for presentation at Velo-city 2017 (June 13 - 16).

The next host for the annual international cycling conference is Arnhem-Nijmegen in the Netherlands. Deadline for abstracts 30 September.

Act now

New publication


For anyone looking for credible evidence on the economic benefits of sustainable transport, a EU-funded project has identified existing data (research papers, reports, feasibility studies, etc.) and weeded out anything unreliable.

The result is: 22 topic-based reviews; over 350 source documents; an in-depth report of the whole review process; and training materials for academics and trainers.

Amongst the reviews, there’s an in-depth paper and summary of what is, and what is not, known about what works for increasing cycle use and improving cycle safety.

Diary dates

Cycle to Work Day

14 September

Following on from the success of Cycling UK’s Bike Week, why not take part in Cycle to Work Day, the national event celebrating everyday cycling, and encouraging everyone to cycle to work for at least one day? Employees, employers and bike stores are all invited to get involved. Pledges win prizes!

Transforming London Streets

23 September, Southwark Cathedral

Transforming London Streets (the new name for the London Cycling Show) will celebrate and showcase the positive impact that walking and cycling has on creating better places.

Offers both a conference and exhibition, with a range of workshops, cycle tours and site visits across Southwark.  

Bike Share Conference (Carplus Bikeplus)

4-5 October, Oxford

The first event (4 October), mainly designed for those involved in delivering electric bike share schemes as part of the Bikeplus Shared Electric Bike Programme, will review the experience and research findings so far.

5 October is a full day of presentations and discussion of the issues around creating and developing successful public bike share schemes. The programme explores strategies for increasing rider numbers, creating successful funding models and latest innovations.

Space for Cycling Roadshows

​From 22 October onwards

Cycling UK’s Space for Cycling campaign wants to transform Great Britain’s roads so that anyone can cycle anywhere. Local pressure is crucial to success, so we’re taking to the road throughout this winter with a series of workshops across the country.

The aim is to engage with local campaign groups, councils and the wider public to expand the reach of the campaign, share ideas and expertise and develop a coordinated national strategy.

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