Apologies: Crispin Truman
Ros X, Keith Butcher, Harry Loughlin, Patrick Field, Douglas Carnall, Trevor Parsons, John Templeton
DC said that we are losing some key activists soon, notably our newsletter person Cathi and rides co-ordinator Neville. We need a) to fill those roles and b) to recruit more active people. He proposed an executive, with positions as follows:
Roles: (incumbents in brackets)
Co-ordinator and chair (DC)
London policy/LCC office co-ordination (vacant)
Local policy (PF)
Social rides (NL)
Education and training/grants (vacant)
Douglas had already punted this idea on the email discussion group, and all but one person at this meeting had seen or taken part in the ensuing online discussion. TP said that he didn’t really see what difference this would make from the present, since the proposed roles were almost all based on what’s going on already, and it was hardly possible to get more out of active people than they were already doing. He did agree, though, that it would be great to appeal for active involvement from more individuals, but it was understandable that only a small proportion of the overall membership were able to make it to meetings. He also suggested that we should try to compile a history of the LCC in Hackney, to see what has been done over the years, which could inform our present activities.
PF said that he thought that the group functioned well with a combination of the vigilance and facilitation of individuals, and support participation of the wider membership. Twenty minutes per year by a thousand people was worth more than ten people working part time. Trevor asked what important roles were presently not filled. The answer was, most pressingly, newsletter co-ordinator on Cathi’s imminent departure. Trevor offered to take this over, seeing advantages in co-ordinating it with the website. As for social rides, PF thought that it was not so very important for us to organise these ourselves unless someone was very keen to do it, since there are already so many opportunities for people to ride for fun or sport.
We discussed other ways of bringing people into the fold, as it were. Douglas suggested a fundraising gig, and Patrick said that he had a suggestion for a party (see below). Douglas would like to have a flyer to hand to cyclists in the street, for information and recruitment purposes.
Harry was elected Refreshments Officer!
Taking up the suggestion of a review made last month, Douglas said that he had looked at the manifesto and thought that it was out of date in some respects. Trevor said that we should concentrate on the principles first, and let the details look after themselves, since there is by no means unanimity about the solutions to problems, e.g. the debate about the efficacy or otherwise of cycle lanes, and we should avoid divisive issues. But Patrick opined that a bit of controversy wasn’t a bad thing, and that it would be educative to have a debate. It was decided that we should publish the manifesto again in the next newsletter and invite comments.
There is going to be another fantastic Burns Night bash, to be held on Saturday 24th January, on the eve of the day itself. Claire has been looking at venues. Apparently everything is in hand, or will be.
Patrick reported that the Chelverton application, having been was finally passed. He said that this was despite the proposals being full of holes and inconsistencies, and there being no real reason for the rush. There will be a public inquiry starting on 6th January 1998 on the issue of compulsory purchase, which is very unwelcome to Dalston City Partnership and Chelverton, and Patrick encouraged us to make this ‘an inquiry to remember’ for the applicants. Lots of people are needed to speak at the inquiry.
Roseberry Place would be closed as a highway in the development plans. Trevor was told on the phone by the planner in charge that the proposed cycle and pedestrian route replacing the street would be open 24 hours. This was news to Patrick, and he will be asking for written confirmation of this.
Patrick has secured the use of the former Dalston Coliseum, AKA The Labyrinth, threatened in the Dalston South development, for a fund/consciousness-raising party on Monday 29th December. Donation on the door, music, drinks, eats, etc. The next Critical Mass on the 19th December will be a crucial publicity opportunity. Details from Patrick on 0171-249 3777, or email him.
Trevor handed round copies of a proposed response to the consultation on the current review of the Shoreditch one-way system. It was discussed and approved by the meeting, which also restated its concern that our comments on the linked question of the Hoxton and Haggerston CPZ should be considered and acted on where possible.
A thick book and thin pamphlet are being prepared on Hackney Agenda 21. The transport section is pretty hot stuff, but the draft is rather spoilt by a negative image of cycling. A cartoon shows a cyclist in a rather unfeasible mid-air position presumably having been knocked off by a car. We decided to ask if this could be changed for a more realistic and positive image.
Patrick went with Greg McNeil of the Groundwork Trust and an architect to look around the Hackney Central property which could potentially provide a base for the proposed cycle centre. It’s not perfect by any means, since there is no street access, and Railtrack aren’t keen on it being used. It seems the people who run the Dogstar in Brixton are interested in part of it, but that wouldn’t preclude the cycle centre being there too.
We watched an excellent short promo for cycling in the area which Douglas and JT have made. Very well received. Some discussion of where it might be shown, (e.g. in ad breaks at the Rio cinema) and about possibilities for putting a message on the end. It was also suggested that we could put on a night of cycle-flavoured films at the Rio, perhaps on a Critical Mass night. John said he would think about that.