Minutes and agendas
The Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC) holds two types of meetings.
- Open meetings offer talks, presentations and workshops on various aspects of cycling.
- Meetings for those who are or want to be more actively involved. Anyone who would like to get involved in our campaigns to improve cycling in Plymouth and to help raise the profile of sustainable transport is very welcome to attend these meetings. We need all the help we can get!
NOTES OF LAST MEETING FOR ACTIVE MEMBERS: Tuesday July 18th at 7 pm in room 405 of the Babbage Building, Plymouth University: ( Map)
Present: Bill Nicholson, Dave Gibbs, Graham Wilson, Stuart Mee, Colin Woodman, Liz Wells, Jim Woffenden, John Abraham, Mike Kelly
Apologies: Sue Jennings
Deep Lane: Response and action by PCyC to DCC email dated 23rd June. GW has been in dialogue with Sherford Development Group for about 4 years or so. The drawings for changes at Deep Lane were misleading and as a result a formal complaint was issued by PCyC. GW spent an hour on site on a Saturday morning monitoring and taking photos to illustrate concerns. DCC have responded to his letter and have said the scheme was subject to a safety audit and there will be a second phase to the scheme which involves another bridge over the A38 to provide a segregated crossing as Sherford grows and funds become available. This is identified in the draft plan for Plymouth and SW Devon. GW has little confidence in that as a solution and has suggested writing to Gary Streeter MP who has been very supportive previously.
LW was interested to know how planners envisaged cyclists using this junction, particularly coming from Plymstock and heading east on the NCN 2. The central reservation is not big enough for cyclists.
CW felt there was provision for cyclists off road, but not on road. He was clear that work needs to start now to make sure that phase 2 is not as bad as phase 1 and suggested asking for a copy of the safety audit.
SM suggested sending photos to and seeking dialogue with Gary Streeter.
JW suggested sending video could offer a clearer picture.
BN suggested contacting Spotlight and offered to make video.
ACTION – GW write to Gary Streeter and contact BBC
Close Pass Initiative. This has been covered on Spotlight and ITV. The Police have been enthusiastic and on the cyclists’ side. SM thanked William Nel-Barker for his work on this and said it’s important to continue to report incidents to the Police (Sgt Gary Williamson) to show the scale of the problem.
BN pointed out this builds on the Give Cyclists Space campaign that PCyC worked on previously and CW would like cyclists to give pedestrians space too.
GW mentioned a local initiative in Ivybridge where they are seeking funding to put up signs reminding drivers to give 1.5m when passing. GW to report back on progress.
GWR Customer and Communities Improvement Fund (CCIF) grant JW confirmed PCC are looking at this but not with a particular focus on cycling. Proposals already exist for improvements at Plymouth station for cycle parking, hire, etc. Suggestion that we investigate improvements at another station (eg Devonport) ACTION – MK to find out more details about what we would need
Report from Jim Woffenden (Transport Planning Officer Plymouth City Council) on current PCC cycling projects
- Plymotion is restarting with renewed funding. Aim is to promote walking, cycling, public transport. It includes funding for cycle training, cycle awareness for professional drivers, school engagement, commuter tutor to help people with journeys to work and knocking on doors in new housing developments to help with travel planning. MK recommended the free bike maintenance training by Bikespace. ACTION – SM to provide / update links to these schemes from PCyC website.
- Infrastructure projects –
- the Ride path is complete. JA suggested that signage could be improved to direct pedestrians along the pedestrian path and use bike symbols on the surface.
- Laira rail bridge to Saltram Meadow – first phase completed with a temporary link. Next phase should start in late summer and be complete by spring 2018 using Rock Gardens to link through to Billacombe Road.
- Barbican to Laira rail bridge – improvements being worked up, completion expected by spring 2018.
- Derriford scheme under way.
- Southway Drive to Plymbridge – proposals are being developed for a segregated facility with delivery in 2017/18 financial year.
- Link from Millbay port to Durnford Street – ongoing planning but not yet funded.
- City centre improvements – should hear more soon.
- SM asked about Friary Yard Sidings – planning permission granted for new houses with an £84k developer contribution for cycle route improvement. SM wanted to know if the new route would actually join up with existing route at the retail park end. GW wanted to know if the developer contribution would be spent within the development area or elsewhere on the NCN 2. Signing is poor on parts of the route after Market road in Plympton and he would like this to be addressed. ACTION – LW offered to investigate this particular development
Maintenance situation – DG had previously been instructed to use Rosemary Starr as a contact, but she is now suggesting we should use the self service portal for South West Highways (SWH who have taken over the PCC contract from Amey). Agreed to do so given the change in contract for maintenance but to monitor situation closely. DG still frustrated that emails are not getting replies, most recently about situation on Forder Valley Road. It is helpful if anyone is reporting issues then please let DG know via PCyC email email@example.com
Review current priorities: GW passed on some facts and figures about cycling in Copenhagen showing what’s been achieved and what could be done. JA pointed out that there are lots of large housing developments on the cards but cycle provision seems poor. No discussion on specific projects.
Arrange meeting with Luke Pollard, recently elected MP for Plymouth Sutton – all agreed this would be a good idea. JA would like to attend. ACTION – SM to arrange
ACTION – SM/GW to prepare response to Ian Bowyer’s letter to Oliver Colvile dated 28th April for discussion at meeting with L Pollard.
Talk planned for December meeting – Neil Greig, Policy and Research Director of IAM RoadSmart. His topic will be about the new initiative headed by the IAM (Institute of Advanced Motorists) and supported by the RAC, RoadSafe, EuroRAP, Nick Ross, Euro NCAP and Transport Focus. There are five main aims of which the first is “to assist the UK Government in delivering its 2015 Road Safety Statement commitment to reduce the number of cyclists and other road users killed and or injured on our roads every year”. GW said this is a major opportunity to invite and involve politicians, transport planners, decision makers etc. ACTION – GW and SM to invite Ian Bowyer and others from PCC
Accounts sign-off will be prepared for next meeting (AGM). DG and MK offered to review the accounts.
T-shirts – 8 sold, 12 remain. Some people have put in orders but yet to pay.
- Feedback on last meeting – speakers were both very good. Attracted a few more people, but not many
- JA pointed to a new housing development of 43 homes in Colebrook. GW suggested an opportunity to push for funding for improvements to cycle routes
- Tuesday 3rd October – AGM
- Tuesday 5th December (provisional) – Neil Greig, IAM
Here are some notes on the last open meeting:
PCyC open meeting June 6th 2017
Graham Wilson gave a brief summary of developments over the last 3 months or so. There was not time to return to discuss these issues at the end of the meeting.
• A new draft cycling network has been published by PCC and PCyC responded on 27th May 2017. PCC has informed us that it fully recognises the importance of separated, integrated cycling infrastructure
• Recent contact with MPs has had different levels of success – Gary Streeter has supported PCyC and is using his influence, Oliver Colvile is doing his bit, Jonny Mercer less so
• PCyC has been consulted and drawings have been produced for the Barbican to Laira Bridge scheme. PCyC responded on 26th May 2017 with support but asking for further improvements
• Consultation is open on works at Cot Hill / Plymouth road in Plympton. PCyC submitted its comments on 6th June 2017 asking that improved cycle facilities are installed before roadworks commence so as to enable local people to cycle instead of being delayed in traffic congestion
• PCyC have put in a formal complaint to DCC on 5th June 2017 about poor cycling provision at the completed works at Deep Lane in Plympton
• Stanborough Cross – we didn’t get everything we wanted but it is better than it was
Mark Youngman (responsibility for integrated transport with GWR) gave a presentation and took questions on forthcoming changes affecting rail travel in the Plymouth area.
• New Intercity Express Trains will be introduced in 2018. It will bring faster journeys and increased capacity. Cycle reservations will be compulsory on these trains, but last minute reservations will be possible. A trial of the new booking system is due to start soon and it will be possible to make reservations by smartphone app, online, by phone or in person at booking offices. Recognised that this divides opinion among cyclists – some like the flexibility of being able to turn up and travel, others want the guarantee of having a space reserved for them.
• Current high speed trains have capacity for 6 cycles, on the new trains it will vary according to the particular service. Cycle capacity on local trains depends on the number of cars. At the moment there is no proposal to introduce a reservation system on these local services.
• Work is going on to improve cycle parking at stations and cycle hire. This is already in place at Plymouth Station.
• Station Travel Plans are being developed (like school travel plans). The idea is to improve access to stations. Plymouth Station Travel Plan has been completed but it is not publicly available. It looks at cycle parking provision, cycle hire facilities, routes to and from the station, signing, etc and acts as a starting point for development planning. Information from the document shows that in one day the number of people arriving at the station by bike was 22 out of approximately 4900. The Plymouth Station Masterplan should reference the Travel Plan
• PlusBike is a one stop shop for information about cycling and traveling by train (http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/118390.aspx ). It gives information about parking, hire, carriage rules, whether reservations are needed etc for all stations.
• GWR have a franchise commitment to invest £2.2million over 3 years for community improvements at stations. This might be used for improving access routes etc and groups could put forward suggestions. It will be The Customer and Communities Improvement Fund (CCIF) for which cycling is eligible. Applications can be made from July 2017
• Discussion followed about capacity on the new trains – it was not clear what the actual capacity for cycle space would be, other than it would vary, but it did sound like most trains would have less capacity than the current high speed trains. Concern was raised about station staff not understanding the rules over bikes on trains. GW asked if we could make representations to GWR over these issues. There was no clear response to this.
CITY BUS DRIVER TRAINING
Tony Hall (driver trainer with Plymouth City Bus) outlined the training that drivers are getting around the theme of ‘we care, we share’ which is designed to change drivers’ perceptions and awareness of vulnerable road users including cyclists. The training package was developed from a model used by Transport for London around safer urban driving. In particular the focus is on helping drivers to recognise the changing street scene and getting them to see things from a different point of view. Drivers have to undertake training each year.
Last year, there were 16 incidents involving City Bus and cyclists, so far this year there has been only 1 which suggests the training is helping. This seemed to be the view of those present too who were able to give examples of considerate behaviour from City Bus drivers.