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.

Scroll down for minutes of recent meetings

Date of next meeting: September 30th 2021
AGM 6pm Followed by Open Meeting 6.30pm
ALL WELCOME to attend but only paid up members can vote. Annual subscription £5. To pay and become a voting member click here.

The Zoom link for both the AGM and Open Meeting is sent to all those on our email list. If you would like to join the email list please complete this form.

Plymouth Cycling Campaign Annual General Meeting
Thursday 30th September 2021  6 – 6.30pm via Zoom meeting.

Agenda for AGM

  1. Welcome and Introductions
  2. Apologies
  3. Minutes of last AGM held 29th Sept 2020 and matters arising
  4. Overview of past year’s activities – John Abraham –Chair
  5. Finance statement – Bill Nicholson – Treasurer and membership secretary
  6. Proposed minor changes to PCyC Constitution as per email previously sent to Committee Members
  7. Election of committee – any advance nominations?

Plymouth Cycling Campaign Open Meeting
Thursday 30th September 2021 6.30 – 7.30pm via Zoom (click to join our email list and receive Zoom link)

Agenda for Open Meeting

  1. Welcome and Introductions (for those just joining open meeting)
  2. Apologies
  3. Minutes of last Open Meeting held 29th Sept 2020 and matters arising
  4. Guest Speaker Rachael Ince, Cycling Development Officer – Plymouth
  5. Current consultations, campaigns and meetings
  6. Cycling infrastructure –under construction and planned
  7. Changes to email system SM
  8. Publicity -social media etc.-CH, Sherford event stand BH/JA
  9. AOB
  10. Date of next Meeting

———————————————————————————–

Minutes of the PCyC Open Meeting – Thursday June 3rd 2021

Present: John Abraham, Hilary Neve, Sue Jennings, Graham Wilson, Jason Searing, David Clark, Bernhard Haas, Stuart Mee, David Kilroy, Mike Kelly, Welcome – Jason Searing

  1. Introductions and apologies – apologies from Bill Nicholson, Dave Gibbs, Cait Hellyer, Jon Stevens
  2. Minutes of last open meeting – no changes
  3. Matters arising from minutes – there has been lots of discussion on multimodal transport hubs which account for the majority of the allocation of TCF2 money. PCyC are broadly in favour of this as long as it supports improvements to cycling not just provision for electric vehicles but lots of questions remain, eg will helmets be available for hire along with bikes, where will bikes need to be returned to, how will maintenance be organised, etc? It was noted that electric vehicles do help CO2 reduction and air pollution but do not address congestion issues.
  4. Brief updates on key campaigns, current infrastructure construction and PCyC meetings / communications with PCC and other bodies.
  5. Billacombe Rd cycle path – the path has been extended to the new roundabout into Saltram Meadow but the surface of the path is not as good as it could be. ACTION – contact Rosie Starr at PCC to log this. The proposed next stage of the route ends with steps at Colsedown Hill. PCyC have objected to this planning application as it is not suitable for all users. PCC say they need to go ahead with the scheme as proposed or lose the funding that has been allocated. This has been raised at the most recent Strategic Liaison Group (SLG) meeting between reps from PCyC and senior officers from PCC
  6. SLG meeting (25 May) – a number of matters were discussed and PCyC views presented robustly. In addition to the Colesdown Hill plan the Forder Valley scheme was also raised. Despite the investment and new / improved cycle provision at the north and south ends of Forder Valley there is no plan for how the cycle route should get past the petrol station. This will continue to be a PCyC priority. HN reported that despite PCC having access to lots of data on bus passenger numbers and traffic data there was a lack of data on cycling which would help to inform route planning decisions
  7. GW reported that Sir Gary Streeter had invited GW and others to join him on a fact finding trip along the cycle route from Marsh Mills to Ivybridge. Four hotspot locations were visited (Cot Hill, Ridgeway, Lee Mill and entry into Ivybridge) to assess problems and solutions. GS will be working with all local authorities involved and GW was invited to attend a meeting with consultants who are working up plans for an improvement scheme for the Lee Mill to Ivybridge section
  8. A386 route update – Iain Stewart from Sustrans has been employed by WDBC to produce an options report. Publication of this report has been delayed until October. All the relevant local authorities, local MPs and Dartmoor National Park Authority are on board but further negotiations with the landowner and commoners are necessary. JA reinforced the need for the route to be a high quality 3metre wide path as any compromises would not take commuting cyclists off the main road
  9. Open discussion on topics raised by members
    Claire Hyatt Harris has suggested:
    a) Create sub-groups? e.g. families / disabilities / women
    b) Contacting wider council / community teams e.g., re-imagining the High St,
    bike storage, bike family friendly spaces

Thanks to Claire for submitting these suggestions in advance of the meeting. Some discussion of points raised and recognition that the groups mentioned are not well represented in PCyC (at least in terms of attendance at meetings). Agreement that we need to hear more about this and that Claire’s experience would be valuable. ACTION – SM to invite Claire to the next committee meeting to help shape next steps.

JS raised the issue of safety at the crossing of Eldad Hill. He raised this with PCC back in January by responding to the consultation on the Strategic Cycle Network but nothing further has been done due to budget constraints. Visibility is very poor and the area is popular with families. JS would like this raised again with PCC at the next SLG meeting. JA said that PCyC have also raised this and proposed a light controlled crossing (estimated cost around £100k – £30k for planning and £70k for construction). MK wondered if any funding may be available through the North Stonehouse community work and low traffic neighbourhood. ACTION – BH as local Sustrans volunteer coordinator to write to Rosie Starr ask again for a remedy to the problems and suggest measures that could be taken, including temporary ones, that would improve the situation eg improved signage, SLOW on road.

JS has already considered some direct action to raise profile of issues around Plymouth and has planned a route to highlight places where cycle lanes disappear and so on. He suggested that regular critical mass rides could be part of PCyC’s approach. SM was concerned that PCyC could lose some credibility with PCC if it was seen to be taking radical action but that the Facebook page could be used by others as a platform to promote such rides and attract more riders.

JS also referred to direct action such as a putting up a large mirror to improve visibility for those crossing the road and another man who regularly took it on himself to cut back trees.

GW said that the PL21 group had attained charity status which had opened up more opportunities to secure funding by applying for grants from the National Lottery for example. Along with letters of support from council, MPs, etc this had allowed the group to access funding that was not available to councils and which could complement and accelerate improvements. Exeter Cycling Campaign have become a charity. GW also pointed out that councillors have their own pot of funding for their wards and this may pay for signage etc.

Discussion followed about the possibility of registering as a charity. The Charity Commission website provides a template to guide you through the process. JS and MK offered to look into this and further discussion is needed on what the benefits and challenges would be. HN said it would be important to see if charity status aligns with our aims and objectives and that we may need to think in terms of active travel more broadly rather than just cycling.

ACTION – JS to investigate Charity Commission website

ACTION – JA to formally invite JS to next committee meeting as a co-opted member

  1. New PCyC Instagram site – the site is up and running. Suggestion for a Bike Week photo competition but it’s too late to launch that now, so MK suggested we make it a summer cycling photo competition with a closing date in early Sept. SJ thought Hayley Smith may have access to some money to fund a prize. MK also raised a suggestion that had come up previously about having a social media campaign diary so that we have a plan for what gets posted for the months / year ahead.
  2. Tour of Britain St.2 Start in Sherford. Sept. 6th
    PCyC plans to have a stand to campaign for the traffic-free Plymouth to Sherford route as well as publicising safer cycling in and around Plymouth. The focus will be on inclusivity. Need people to commit to helping on the day. Suggestions that we should work with other groups
  3. Hayley Smith is on leave; Jim Woffenden may know who is responsible for PCC stand
  4. Ivybridge town council are putting something on and GW has contacted Sustrans, may have Sustrans volunteers on their stand. Also trying to get local schools involved in the event
  5. SJ is trying to find out what Breeze are doing – eg ride out while roads are still closed. Worth contacting Ryan and Claire from Bikeability to see if they are involved
  6. Confirmed that Plymotion will be there so perhaps could work with them in some way. Rosie has copied in and copied in Jessica Colverson who we presume is organising it.
  7. HN suggested having electric bikes for people to try out and also saw the opportunity to get views on local routes, etc
  8. GW pointed out that there is a new  county councillor for the area (Dan Thomas) – may be worth contacting him and he could be a source of some money to fund publicity. Yealm Estuary Group may also want to be involved
  9. JA will contact Endeavour Cycling
  10. MK did ask whether the organisers of the event had specified any limits to what we could do on our stall
  11. AOB
  12. DCC are giving away car stickers promoting 2m as a safe passing distance for cyclists. All you need to do is contact DCC and they will send them out – Give Cyclists Space car sticker. Email matford-mailbox@devon.gov.uk  with your name and address and allow 21 days for delivery.
  13. Date of next open meeting – Sept AGM, date TBC

24 thoughts on “Minutes and agendas

  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?

    • On the face of it, sounds like very poor management, technically they probably can do it. Dosen’t help promote cycling to work. Perhaps there are reasons such as stopping random non-employees using the lockers. May be worth posting on the facebook site, in order to raise awareness and discourage other companies from following suit.

  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. 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.
    Bryan

    • 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

    • To right here, I wondered why cyclists cycled the embankment road instead of the road. I have recently gone from a ebike to a road bike. I cycled the path and it was awful, then yesterday cycled the road and it was lovely and smooth, plus as a bonus got a personal best on Strava.

      • The state of the Embankment Road pavement path has been high on our agenda for at least 12 years! PCC is well aware of these concerns but always claims logistical difficulties and lack of funds to deal with it. This although we have put forward our alternatives

      • I cycle on the cycle path embankment road, it is horrible and needs to be resurfaced but I feel unsafe to ride on the road despite the road being a smoother ride. If PCC/Government want more people to use bikes, safe cycle lanes are desperately needed in Plymouth. I commuted to work by bike for 18 months until I was hit by a motorbike, Plymouth roads are too dangerous to cycle in rush hour, so I’m now back reluctantly driving to work, off road/MTB is far safer and the way I ride these days.

  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.
    =====================================================================================
    Hello
    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. 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.

  10. 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.

    Stuart Mee
    Chair
    Plymouth Cycling Campaign (PCyC)

  11. 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.

    • 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.

  12. 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

  13. 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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