Minutes and agendas

The Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC) meetings are open to all

  • 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! Or just come along to find out what we’re up to – you’ll be very welcome whatever type of cyclist you are, or even if you don’t cycle but would like to! And any comments you may have will be welcome too.

Date of next open meeting Tuesday May 15th 2018 7 pm VENUE room 404 Babbage Building Uni Campus – map


This meeting will focus on the future direction of the Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC) with brief reports on current campaigns and developments as we see them, plus a report from Jim Woffenden, Cycling Officer at Plymouth City Council.

The PCyC was formed in 2010. We believe that better infrastructure is the fundamental requirement in getting more people cycling. With no funds of our own we have concentrated on building links and relationships with the holders of the purse strings e.g. Plymouth City Council and neighbouring councils, Sustrans, Highways England, and various other bodies concerned with cycling infrastructure, sustainable transport and healthy living in and around Plymouth.

  • We are official consultees with Plymouth City Council and have been involved with all the recent and proposed highway developments as well as residential and commercial schemes where cycling infrastructure is proposed or considered. Our submissions have been effective to different degrees depending on a variety of factors, e.g. cost, land ownership issues, and political pressures. We claim significant benefits (not perfection!) from our input into:
  1. The recently completed path from across the old Laira Rail Bridge to Broxton Drive and the plans to continue this towards Elburton and Sherford
  2. The Derriford improvements
  3. The Coypool improvements
  4. The Clearbrook path on NCN 27 The Plym Valley Trail
  5. Better maintenance of existing paths
  • We continue to campaign among other things for:
  1. Major improvements to the Embankment road “shared path”
  2. Resurfacing and lighting for the existing route from Efford to Marsh Mills
  3. The Hooe Lake Bridge
  4. Better route from North Cross to Central Park and northwards towards Manadon
  5. A parallel path to the A386 between Roborough and Yelverton
  6. Construction of path between King George Playing Fields and the existing path near Otter Nurseries, and its extension to Yealmpton
  7. Improvements to NCN 2 through Plympton and the extension of NCN 2 from Junction Gardens (to the west of the Seagull Bridge over Embankment Road) through to the Tothill Sidings and onward to Exeter Street
  8. A new integrated route between the City and the Tamar Bridge
  9. Decent cycling infrastructure in the proposed “Boulevard” between Colin Campbell Court and Millbay

If the PCyC is to continue campaigning on these issues and to play a part in persuading planners and engineers of the value of quality cycle routes and infrastructure we urgently need more volunteers – we are stretched! If you’d like to get involved please come to the meeting and find out what you could do.

Also come along and tell us what you want from the PCyC?:

  • More high profile campaigning
  • Better engagement with local politicians (councillors and MPs)
  • Better engagement with planners and highway engineers
  • More rides
  • Better engagement with other volunteer and community groups
  • Closer ties with local cycling clubs e.g. Yogi, Corinthians, etc
  • A drive to recruit more paid up members (currently only around 30) to improve representation and enhance our very limited funds ( current annual membership just £5)
  • Greater use of social medias and the internet
  • Other ideas welcome

If you think you can help to promote any of these ideas please come along and let us know.

Everybody is welcome. You don’t need to be a member or even a cyclist! As long as you believe as we do that a healthy future means sustainable transport we’d like you to get involved.


Plymouth Cycling Campaign – minutes of the meeting on 6th February 2018

Present – Sue Jennings (Breeze) Chairing, Dave Gibbs, Colin Gillespie, Bill Nicholson, Graham Wilson, Erica Travies (Access Plymouth), Simon Trevan, Jim Woffenden (PCC), Nick Moore, Clare Smith, John Abraham

Apologies – Stuart Mee, Hayley Harvey, Mike Kelly

Minutes of last meeting:

Yelverton – Dousland Route SJ made a point that the route link does in fact lead back onto the lane.

Sustrans – no news from Highways England – had hoped for the report last week, but not heard from them

Charles Cross Roundabout proposals – GW official response. They don’t agree with cycle lanes

Report from Sustainable Transport Conference

Access Plymouth – ET explained that ‘Access Bike’ is now up and running.  Have two trikes and a bike to hire from Mayflower East Car park premises for initial free period. Assessment and familiarisation sessions provided, need to book. Two sessions delivered. Being supported by PSSP for training, and Bike Space for maintenance. Official launch being planned later in Spring with partners.  JW explained it is being funded through Plymotion for 3 years, then aims to be sustainable. Riding a trike can mean people don’t look disabled in the way that those on scooters, or in a wheelchair do. GW said to let the PCyC group know when the launch day will be and they will promote it

Transport Conference – 70 -80 attendees. 4 Speakers as detailed in previous minutes:

Neil Greig, Rosie Starr, Gary Streeter, Paola Spivach.

No press attended. Try Rachel Dodd. Sarah Wallington

JW – Gave congratulations. ‘Thought provoking’. SJ – ‘Many had made positive comments’

Bristol to Bath path is the first in the country to be widened due to high volume of cycle traffic (no room for walkers)

~ one person stated his view that Plymouth presents with 2 choices – 3 lanes of traffic or narrow pavements at 3-4mph. Great risk, not permeable.

ST echoes that cycling in Plymouth not good. Cited Norwich as a good example.

JW asked if the group could support the Sustrans’ bid from Highways England for route from Ivybridge to Plymouth City Centre.

HE bid:  JW – only draft report so far.  Mowhay Road footbridge over A38. HE working on that. Will connect to improvements made in 2015 St Budeaux bypass (on to Crownhill).

GW No connection to cycle route 2 into City Centre. Risk assessment must be done from cyclists viewpoint – not just from accident statistics. JW cited improvements in London. Plymouth is making progress. Cycling has increased by 50 % in 6 years. Left with legacy from the 1950’s/1960’s. Funding to improve route to Hoe via Armada Way

~ one person said that students need to be able to access many areas of Plymouth. They are not part of the car community. They could use their vote, we could tap into that.

Report from Infrastructure Group (JA)

JA outlined the role of the Infrastructure sub-group in monitoring development proposals and planning applications and commenting on traffic regulation orders (TROs), Recent consultations included Central Park development, Home Park/Argyle application which included a hotel, shops and an ice rink, Mannamead Rd junctions improvements, Barbican – Laira Route and Neptune Park waling and cycling routes.

JA reported on the meeting he and Stuart Mee had with planners on 31/10/17 to discuss the Millbay development, Colin Campbell Ct and the proposed boulevard.

They were advised that the boulevard, as envisioned in the Mackie plan would not happen. JA and SM asked for a commitment to traffic –free cycle lanes.

JA also sits on the Plymouth Local Access Forum which is independent of PCC, but  a statutory PCC consultee.

JA invited more members to join the Infrastructure Group. Nick Moore and Erica Travies agreed to giving it as trial period.

Colin Woodman had written to JA in effect resigning from PCyC. JA said that Colin had been one of the main promoters of cycling in Plymouth for 20-30 years as the CTC ‘Right to Ride’ officer and on various Forums and committees.

ACTION: Write a thank you to Colin from the group

Hooe Lake Bridge (JA)

JA reported that the Hooe Lake bridge reinstatement had been discussed at the Plymouth LAF previously. He is giving a presentation at the next meeting to argue that with new residential developments and increased traffic strengthen the for it’s

Repair or replacement.

NCN2/The Embankment (GW) Segregated route on other side of the railway. 4m cycle only lane and separate footway – proposal to Sustrans to include in HE bid. Estuary owned by the Duchy of Cornwall. Raised platform – no need for high retaining walls. Sustrans to feed back on report to PCyC.  Mentioned Exeter to Exmouth Estuary trail, DCC funded -liked by Regional Director

Contraflow Cycling provision (CS) Focus more on traffic calming measures, contraflows and 20mph zones. N and E corridors, ignoring C.Centre and those on different routes.

CS – Belgium – accepted norm for cyclists to travel both directions on 1 way streets.

Around the room it was felt that cyclists will travel against one way and on the pavement and through red lights if provision is not made for them. JW said that creating contraflow requires Designand safety audit, Traffic regulation order plus signage Need a big number of streets, say 50 or 60 streets in Plymouth and submit to PCC as being more cost effective than just a few. Prioritise streets including no-entries and banned movements. ET asked if there was  a list of all one way streets to look at. Present our list to JW.

JA – All cycle routes need direction arrows. Some shared paths have symbols which are wearing out.  JW – Madeiera Road contraflow – positive step forward.

Volunteer Hours – (GW/SJ) SJ submitted report/update February 2018. Breeze rides – led rides for women, trained by British Cycling). 9 Weekly led rides. ET impressed, especially during winter. Volunteer hours = 2,500 hours per year given to PCC.

2 Breeze ride leaders now MTB leaders for Ride Social. Different rides for families. Hope to do mixed rides. Eg. Cycling for Breast Cancer. All can be booked from same website. British Cycling provide leader training, membership covers the insurance.

GW-Sustrans have similar training, along the lines of the construction industry with emphasis on safety.

JW – Very grateful, works well with PCC programmes.

SJ – Leisure, learning new routes including commutes, parks. Led rides encourage people to try road routes that they wouldn’t otherwise do.

GW – Sustrans have 11 rides planned from March-June. S.Hams. 10-50 mile rides. N.Abbot furthest. Want to create a cycle route to Kingsbridge.

Will also be on Let’s Ride and Active Devon websites.

Details of websites are on banners on the PlymTrail. Branded clothing for leaders.

Motorists have AA/RAC –associations paid to help motorists. Cyclist groups are all voluntary. Something for PCC to consider.. 

Discussed Oslo – reduce the no. of cars in the city centre; and Helsinki MAAS. Travel pass that includes use of car (sharing) as a small part of travel options. More efficient travel.

WN Give cyclists space-training motorists – led to Driving instructors code to consider cyclists.

Target Travel (WN) have been mentioned as being aggressive towards cyclists. Suggest write a letter to TT to meet with PCBus  who have good training. SM and WN to compose the letter.

Crowdfunding bid for BMX track under Marsh Mills.

Financial: (WN) £317.05 in the kitty.

24 paid up members at £5 membership

2 new members

Subscriptions paid on the night

Grey t-shirts £15: 13 sold, 7 left

Some yellow t-shirts left (new but old stock) foc. Suggest sell at a PCyC event/ride. (tried before)

Bike Life Funding (GW) Sustrans biggest asset. Cited Copenhagen.

Collaboration with 7 cities. Inviting 3 more cities to apply. Gary Streeter has written a letter.

Funded from Freshfield foundation. Local Authority fund £15,000 for 4 years – foundation fund the rest. April 2018 – 2022. ‘Make to Move’ strategy (LEP?*)

Greater Manchester – Chris Boardman – wants £1.5 billion to transform city. Edinburgh another example.

Applications in by February 28th 2018. Do we approach PCC and invite them to support a bid application?

MOTION. Sustrans will do the bulk of the work. Plymouth City facilitates it. Ask Gary Streeter who the letter went to. GW/SJ to write a letter

Speaker at next meeting: Discussed and agreed to invite the police. Gary Williams suggested (JW). Speak for 20-30 minutes with the meeting afterwards.

DONM 15th May 2018

  1. Hello, I just want to introduce myself to those who may not know me yet! My name is Erica Travies and I am the lead for ‘Access Bike’ based at Access Plymouth, Mayflower East Car Park (Shopmobility and Community Transport). We have recently taken delivery of two trikes and a bike courtesy of PCC, which we are hiring out to those less able to use a conventional bike. I hope to attend your next meeting on 6th February and meet some of you in person and talk a little bit about this new service. Meanwhile we are hoping to recruit volunteers interested in bikes generally to support new users. Please contact me with any questions!

  2. I just wondered how common it was for Employers to charge for secure cycle storage?
    Does anyone have any experience with this?
    I work for a company at Millbay, who received financial assistance to install cycle lockers and are featured on the Council website as supporting cycling to work, but they insist employees rent the lockers from them for a monthly fee and pay a deposit to use only their padlocks. Cars for employees are free to park in the staff car park on the same site. I find this a little odd but did not know if it was standard practice with other companies?

  3. Hi All
    4 weeks ago I had a cycling accident on my commute home from work. I was crossing the road between cycle paths at Sandy Road Plympton to go down Glenn Road and was hit by a motorbike. The deep lane junction and traffic chaos at Chaddlewood roundabout played a part in this. Traffic was queuing from deep lane up past Eagle Road towards the industrial estate, the crossing point was left clear and the vehicles stopped. I looked before I crossed and was confident it was clear, however I never saw the motorbike that hit me at speed going down the outside of the stationary vehicles (as it was on the bend of the roundabout) I was hurt and have only just returned to work today. The motorcyclist left me laying in the road with my bike on top of me and left the scene without giving me his details. I have reported it to the police. I think this crossing point is currently a dangerous point to cross for cyclists and pedestrians while the road works are in place – I just want to make people AWARE!!

    Thank you

  4. Hi all

    I was wondering if anyone is aware of what (if any) infrastructure will be provided for cyclists on the replacement Merafield road bridge over the A38 near Stag Lodge, Plympton. Have looked online but can’t find any plans.

    • Highways England are responsible for this scheme. Sadly we weren’t consulted and the comment above is the first I’ve heard about it. As an aside the Plymouth Cycling Campaign is now being consulted when HE consider it relevant. I have emailed them asking if cycling infrastructure is included and stressing why it should be. Watch this space…..

  5. Hi Bryan. Thanks for your input and I agree with you about the pavement along the Embankment, and so do many others. We have brought this up on several occasions with the Council but the response has always been along the lines of “at least there’s a path, there are other more urgent priorities”! Anyway, the maintenance of the existing infrastructure is on the next agenda so we’ll mention this again. See you at the meeting perhaps?

  6. Bryan Millings

    Hi, As a very keen cyclist (150 miles avg aweek) was very pleased to found this group. also a member of yogi cycling club.Is there a way of putting into your agenda the resurfacing of the Embankment cycle path It’s at a stage where I feel safer cycling on the road along the Embankment because of the condition of the path.

    • davidhext@aol.co.uk

      Hi all,

      Entirely agree with comments regarding cycleway along the Embankment;
      in particular I find the section from Sainsbury’s to Laira roundabout
      so bumpy that it shakes me to the very core. I have seen many cyclists
      recently preferring to use the road: that’s crazy! It’s high time PCC
      did something!

      Dave Hext

  7. May I clarify 2 items in the Minutes of the last meeting and add a new third item?

    Under “Sherford Expressway”, I referred to the policy of the Institute of Advanced Motorists for cycling infrastructure. The IAM policy dated May 2013 is not limited to London as it is for everywhere. Among many things it says ”
    • Infrastructure improvements which separate cyclists and heavy traffic should have the top priority for investment
    • Well maintained, smooth and pothole free roads, pavements and cycle lanes will assist in the encouragement of cycling
    • The IAM supports the use of 20mph zones in residential areas and where cycling and pedestrian flows merit it
    • Innovative shared space designs should be encouraged which create cycling friendly environments where it is clear that all road users have the same priority”

    Not mentioned in the Minutes, JW showed the meeting an extract from Sustrans Design Manual dated April 2014 titled “Handbook for Cycle Friendly Design”. In particular he showed page 15. I commend JW with showing this as it represents exactly what we as PCyC have been promoting for the Cycle Expressway for 2 years. I urge everyone to obtain a copy of this as it pulls together best practice as used.

    Finally may I draw everyone’s attention to a new cycling initiative from the Dept of Transport? It is “The Cycle Delivery Plan” dated September 2014. This wants all local authorities to create a cycling vision. There are opportunities for partnership with Government to help create fully integrated transport systems for which cycling is a major part. While not explicit in the Plan, I foresee new avenues of funding.

    My vision is for a policy of “No Ridiculous Car Journeys” as successfully undertaken at Malmo in Sweden, a maritime city comparable to Plymouth. It has always been my view that Plymouth has enormous opportunity for cycling and I see no reason that we cannot do what has been achieved not just in Malmo but many cities elsewhere where 25% of all journeys are by bike. It makes economic sense and is invaluable for people’s health

  8. At the last meeting Dave Wigmore requested thoughts/views re cycling in Plymouth, and all members are encouraged to contact their local councillors expressing their views/concerns, I have contacted mine (Moor View) expressing thoughts about shared pathways which are a danger to both cyclists and pedestrians, and do not allow cyclists to “make progress”. As stated at the meeting, it may make some non cycling councillors sit up and take note.
    As the councillors for Moor View, I am writing to you, as all members of Plymouth Cycle Campaign are being encouraged to do, re views/problems with cycling in Plymouth. Below are problems I regularly encounter, I appreciate the areas may not be in your ward, but perhaps you can speak to those whose wards the areas are in on my behalf.
    I regularly try to use shared paths from around the George Junction area towards Crownhill and on to Camels Head and basically they don’t work. They are dangerous to both cyclists and pedestrians for the following reasons.
    First example – Powisland Drive to Derriford roundabout – to narrow, very little room to pass/overtake each other. On Tuesdays, rubbish/wheelie bins causing obstructions, often parked vehicles doing the same, and as with all cycle paths, pedestrians/joggers often using iPods’ etc so they never hear you ring your bell. Because of these problems, cyclists like any other commuter who wish to “make progress” cannot do so, nor can club cyclists who often travel at 30 mph or more.
    St Budeaux by pass – while I appreciate the new section from the footbridge over the Parkway to Mowhay Road is quite wide therefore making it a little safer, its still as bad from Mowhay Road to Camels Head as the previous entry, very, very narrow, (especially near the sub station, about 2 feet wide) very little room to negotiate/pass/overtake, pedestrians/joggers, again often using iPods, other cyclists. Occasionally if there a groups they wont make it easy for you, even if you do the right thing and slow down to walking pace. So again you cannot make progress.
    I often also use the Embankment, this has all the problem already stated only worse, its busier so the problems occur more often, family groups, cycling or walking, dog walkers, joggers, people waiting at bus stops, all of which they have the perfect right to do.
    Even as a commuter I often travel at 25 mph or more, if I have to avoid any of the problems explained it’s necessary to use the road/highway otherwise I may as well walk.
    Could you along with other councillors see if there is a way forward to address these problems, i.e. – making where possible, pathways wider, moving street furniture etc to make cycling safer, not just for me, but also for less confident adults and children.

    Dave Gibbs

  9. Thanks Dave – great turnout and I think it went really well. Hope to do another one in the Spring.

  10. Enjoyed the ride today, nice to see so many turn up. Well done Stuart, looking forward to the next one. Thanks to the helpers as well, appreciated by all.

  11. A thank you to Stuart for all your past hard work

  12. Plymouth Campaign has been growing and increasing its work since Dom Tucker and I set it up in the summer of 2010. We have achieved a lot together (see our website) and it is vital for the future of cycling in Plymouth that the Campaign continues its work. I have now been chairing for 4 years and I believe it’s time for a change, to bring new direction to the group and allow me to develop my other interests.

    At the last meeting of PCyC I stated my intention to resign as chair and that resignation will take effect from July 15th, the date of the next meeting. I am happy to help the new chair and take time to hand over. I won’t be leaving the campaign, but I am keen to make the change.

    We will need a new chair from the next meeting.

    The role of chair is to act as a focal point and figurehead rather than do all the work of the campaign. As the projects we are involved with have grown in number over the 4 years I have tried to ensure that other members take on defined roles, so that the task of the chair is now very much one of leading and facilitating. There is one meeting every 2 months and a small but steady flow of enquiries to deal with.

    So if you are a cyclist and want the Campaign to carry on pressing for improvements then this is your opportunity to step up. You could be one of the active members or perhaps someone who has not yet been actively involved but feels they have the leadership qualities and communication skills necessary to carry out the role of chair.

    If this is you, please contact me as soon as possible by replying to this message or simply come along to the next meeting on July 15th .

    The Plymouth Cycling Campaign is now respected and listened to by those authorities involved in cycling locally. We are pushing our high profile campaign for an expressway out to Elburton and beyond, improving driving behaviour (including talking to City Bus drivers), canvassing police support, and have a number of other issues under way.

    We have about 250 subscribers to these emails and about 300 people use our Facebook page. Our bi-monthly meetings are much smaller and more friendly than those large numbers suggest. Everyone has a chance to take an active part, so please come to the meetings, help select the new chair and find out how you could become involved.
    Best wishes

    Stuart Mee
    Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC)

  13. Part of the route from clearbrook to plymbridge on ncn 27 has become quite overgrown with stinging nettles. Quite often I have to move over and brush the nettles with legs as to avoid possible collisions with others, leaving me with stingging itchy legs. Isnt it about time the path was cleared of nettles.

    • Steve we have brought this up with Sustrans and Devon County Council. We have been told they are aware and planning to bring in some motorised flails to do something about it. Unfortunately nobody will take responsibility for the section between Plym Bridge and Coypool so this is left to Sustrans volunteers to do their best.

    • Bill Nicholson

      The section of path from Coypool to Plymbridge is the responsibility of SUSTRANS and recently a group of SUSTRANS volunteers spent a very hot Saturday morning clearing much of this path of overhanging vegetation and stinging nettles. We desperately need more volunteers and so if anyone is interested please contact SUSTRANS HQ at Bristol who will put you in touch with the local group. Any problems with this section of path should be reported to SUSTRANS.

  14. Just extra point, Bikeability training which is available free of charge to all Plymouth residents is strongly recommended to improve the skills of even experienced cyclists in dealing with more difficult stretches of road. telephone 550729 or e-mail bikelinks@Plymouth.gov.uk to book a place

  15. Just one clarification: the Bikeability delivered to schoolchildren by the School Sports Partnership on behalf of Plymouth City Council is delivered by fully qualified national standard cycling instructors.

    The concerns regarding the section of road from Laira Bridge eastbound to the first roundabout are noted

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