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!
  • Currently we are looking for someone to lead on the campaign to get a cycle path built along the A386 between Roborough and Yelverton. This has been on the back burner recently due to lack of people willing to try and move it forward, although plenty of people bring it up on our Facebook forum. It’s not a new idea and has been investigated by Devon County Council previously. If you’re interested we’d be happy to welcome you on board and brief you.
  • 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.

NEXT MEETING TUESDAY February 5th (Changed from January 22nd) 7 PM
All welcome


Minutes of the meeting of Plymouth Cycling Campaign, 16.10.18
Room 417 Babbage Building, University Campus: Map

Present: Bill Nicholson, Jon Pitcher, Sue Jennings (chair), Hayley Harvey, Patrick James, Cllr Jeremy Goslin, Clare Smith, John Abraham, Graham Wilson, Simon Trevan, Jim Woffenden, Mike Kelly

Apologies: Stuart Mee, Cathy Griffin, Dave Gibbs, David Clark



Treasurer’s report and authentication of accounts – BN circulated a summary of the accounts for the past year which were authenticated by MK. Main income is from subscriptions and sales of T-shirts, main outgoing is the subscription / affiliation fee to Cycling UK. Current bank balance stands at £441.65

Membership report – currently 28 paid up members. A number of membership payments come through cash payments – BN restated that it is much easier if these are done electronically as standing orders.

Co-chair’s report – SJ thanked SM for doing so much for the Campaign Group in his capacity as Chair from the outset. A new ‘job description’ has been put together to reflect the changing role. The (co-)chair’s role principally involves chairing quarterly meetings, formulating policy and campaigns, and meeting with other committee members between open meetings to coordinate work. Some discussion followed about how to reshape the committee structure of the group.

GW and JA said that more weight comes from responses from PCyC as an official consultee rather than individuals but there needed to be clarity about how this collective response is formulated. SJ felt that at least two people should be looking at anything that goes out from PCyC. This had been discussed before – ACTION – MK to find what had been previously agreed.

JA said the sub-groups structure had to be looked at again and suggested that there should be a management committee that all info is circulated to. SJ suggested that JP joins DG on the maintenance goup.

Election of officers

Treasurer – BN proposed by JA and seconded by ST

Membership Secretary – BN proposed by HH and seconded by CS

Secretary – MK proposed by BN and seconded by GW

Co-chair – CS proposed by JA and seconded by ST

Co-chair – SJ proposed by MK and seconded by BN

Communications Officer – SM proposed by BN and seconded by GW

All nominees duly elected unanimously


Ordinary business

Minutes of the last meeting – JA raised two corrections – Graham Cornish retired from DCC in March; no direct contact had been made with the Harbourmaster in relation to Hooe Lake Bridge but JA had had conversations with others

Feedback from PCC Cycling Commissioner

  • JG had been out for two rides with members of PCyC and various issues were noted. JG had been accompanied by Council Officers to look at the extension along the old railway and issues over signing have been raised with JW. The issue with the raised kerb will be addressed by the developer when final surface finish is applied.
  • JG has also spoken to Cllr Vincent (ward councillor) re Efford Pathway – keen to have better signing to give greater prominence for this route. SJ also referred to issues remaining with the quality of the surface, drain covers etc.
  • JG referred to other issues around the Marsh Mills area. He has talked to James Cleeton (Sustrans) about resurfacing of the sewage works path on Route 2 in Plympton. There is allocated funding for improvements here which include replacing the small bridge, new lighting as well as resurfacing with money coming from Highways England.
  • Some discussion of options for Route 2 from Marsh Mills along the Embankment.
  • Consultation is to begin soon on new cycling paths in the Southway cycling scheme. Ward councillors have been briefed and seem happy for shared use path proposals. Barbican to Laira Rail Bridge improvements are also out to consultation.
  • JG is trying to get into local communities in central Plymouth to find out what would help people to cycle more there. Hills are clearly a problem, so keen to look at developing an electric bike hub. ST raised the issue of pavement parking affecting wheelchair users and pedestrians as well and felt this is something PCyC could work on in a wider focus working with local communities on making different transport choices.
  • JG mentioned the PCC ‘walk to the moon’ challenge encouraging primary school pupils to get involved in a competition recording walks / scoots / rides to school. He emphasised that effecting change is about hearts and minds as well as new routes and infrastructure.

Report from JW (PCC)

  • PCC has consulted on a reduced speed limit (40 to 30 mph) on Tavistock Rd from north of Powisland Drive into the existing 30 mph zone. This will be reviewed in 12 months’ time – feedback welcomed.
  • SJ raised the issue of traffic crossing the cycle lane to enter Windsor House – JW said that reduced speed limit helps to reduce conflict. GW referred to solutions used in Chester with new signage, raised platforms and give way markings for vehicles to address problems like this. JP asked about any issues at Gdynia Way / Hele’s Terrace. JW said accident stats could be found at http://www.crashmap.co.uk
  • Transforming Cities Fund – Plymouth has been successful in the first phase. It is not definite but there is a good chance of getting access to some of the £840m funding. The initial bid was fairly broad and will be finalised for the next stage in the process.
  • Draft Strategic Cycling Network document shows intention for a route linking to Sherford. Going east from Colesdown Hill is more challenging. GW referred to the Expressway plan using the hatched portion of the A379 and linking with the existing path at Brixton. Issues with parking on the road were flagged again.
  • Cycle training, commuter tutor (adult cycle confidence support) with riders accompanied on their journey to work etc are available free from Plymotion
  • Some discussion of 20 mph zones around schools – evidence shows that the wider the area covered the greater the benefit. Developing Home Zones etc shows you don’t necessarily need cycle paths when areas are made safer for cycling through
  • Parking restrictions associated with Barbican to Laira Bridge scheme are going through statutory consultation stage at the moment
  • JW looking into previously raised issues over NCN 2 along the Embankment and cycle contraflows around the city that had been suggested
  • CS asked if the Barbican lock gate bridge was ever coming back into use. JW confirmed it would, but there was no clear timescale at the moment. JW was asked to inform us when any further update available.

Liaison between PCyC and PCC – ST proposed that this should be through email initially. ACTIO N – ST to email JG

Report from infrastructure Group

  • JA reported that comments had been made on consultations re King George V playing field (asked for 4m wide path rather than
    3m ); Cattedown Wharf / Neptune Park (recognised as an improvement but noted difficult issues with articulated lorries, etc); Hooe Lake Bridge (further progress unlikely. Plymouth Local Access Forum have been looking at this for some time. There are a number of tricky issues – the height of the bridge and permitted gradients would require a very long ramp. It would need real support and involvement from the local community but local opinion is split. A better option may be to build a new bridge not using existing pilings closer to the Cattewater). SJ thanked JA for his persistence in exploring this issue.
  • A386 – JA has written to a number of local councillors, MPs, DNPA, etc with suggestions for a fast commuter route. There is a clear need for it on a very busy road. Meeting with James Cleeton (Sustrans) led to advice about feasibility studies. Issues with land ownership. Valuable contacts made and support is evident. SJ pointed out that Andy Janes (Sustrans volunteer) had made contact with SWW. ACTION – JA to contact Andy.
  • Millbay boulevard – consultation is open on this. The plans do not show a cycle path even though that had been anticipated. ACTION – JA to respond stating that we expected to see an integrated cycle route

Report on Sustrans links

  • GW reported that Ian Stewart has taken over from Rupert Crosbee as area manager. The local groups now have a full complement of volunteers for ranger duties with JP taking on volunteer coordinator role for Plymouth / Route 27 south group.
  • South Dartmoor Towns Project – exciting opportunity for upgrade to NCN 2 from Plymouth to Ashburton. Feasibility study is in the offing for a 4m wide path which would be funded by Highways England.
  • DCC have a plan for a new roundabout at Lee Mill linked to A38 off slip. GW would like to see a Dutch style roundabout. Local groups will be looking at this carefully.
  • There is a 35% increase in traffic predicted for Ivybridge with a lot of new building taking place, much of it heading to Plymouth. GW has a meeting on Nov 2nd involving Gary Streeter MP, reps from Hannah’s, town and district councillors – want to make sure that extra traffic isn’t all cars. Also working on a street design project in Ivybridge.

Led rides

  • This year the local South Hams Sustrans group has run 15 guided rides with 3 more coming up.
  • Devon and Cornwall has seen 400 led rides since April on the Let’s Ride website – https://www.letsride.co.uk/ More mixed rides are now appearing and 10 new ride leaders have been trained. There are also various rides targeted at particular users – bike and baby, Plymouth uni, rides for PCC staff at lunchtimes, Halloween family bike ride, etc.
  • Giro di Plymouth – around 25-30 riders took part. Thanks to SM for setting this up and those who helped to marshal the ride and to HH for organising the welcome drinks at the end. The ride went well – nice feel and a mix of people. ACTION – MK to write up for Cycle Tales, anyone with photos to send them to SM


JG reported that cycling path in Central park from Ford Park cemetery has been widened as well as other improvements. Request that shared use signage goes in too.

GW distributed car stickers to promote the close pass campaign

Date for next meeting – 22 January 2019

  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

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

%d bloggers like this: