Hackney LCC meeting 1 November 2006

Venue: Aspland & Marcon Community Hall

Members Attending: Richard Lewis (joint coordinator), Keith Magnum, Tim Evans (cycle training officer), Nadine Pinkett, Diana Pinkett, Adrian Smith, Trevor Parsons (joint coordinator), Brenda Puech (treasurer), David Farnham (secretary), Charlie Lloyd (membership secretary), Simon Hughes, Oliver Schick (council liaison)

Apologies from Marian Farrugia.

Guests: Simon Barnet (Living Streets)

1. Matters Arising

Richard is still to write to Jean Cantrell at Hackney Street Scene re: lane widths in Safety Audits.

Death of Cyclist on Morning Lane: Brenda has heard from a friend of Brixon Brady, the cyclist sadly killed last, who let her know that no date has yet been set for an inquest. Brenda pointed out that Brixton, who was originally from New Zealand, hadn’t kept in contact with her family, so her friends were her closest relations. When the inquest does take place, the friends are keen that LCC attend to challenge what appears to be an assumption that Brixton was in error. The Coroners agreement will be needed for this to occur. Charlie suggested that, should Doubty Street Chambers agree to assist as they have done previously, they could contact both the Coroner and any family to sound this out.

Trevor and Oliver had raised the issue of the safety of the junction where the accident occurred at last month’s Council Liaison Meeting. Trevor reported back that, whilst LBH were open to modifying the junction, they would not be making any moves until the Coroners report is received. Jean Cantrell also explained that this would most likely have to be considered within the framework of the Hackney Town Centre Highways reassessment which is just about to begin. This is expected to take 5 years to completion. Charlie proposed that LCCiH develop some junction modification proposals alterations to send to the coroner – as any comments from him/her could speed up this process.

Theft and Risk Assessment: Brenda has repayed £370 to the cyclist whose bike was stolen from Stoke Fest. The organisers have in turn agreed to reimburse us £250 as discussed last week. Richard submitted an invoice for a lock he has purchased to secure our bikes stored at the Strand Building following the thefts there last month. A bike users group has been set up whilst the building owners have promised to improve security. Nevertheless, finding our own lock up space remains a priority. Richard noted he is yet to hear from the board members regarding the possibility of using more secure (and rented) space in the building for a multi-use space.

2. Living Streets Affiliation

Simon Bennet of Living Streets (formally known as the Pedestrian Association) came in to discuss affiliation with Hackney Cyclists.

Over the past 5 years Living Streets have grown in prominence by promoting community street audits which are sent to local authorities and developers. These double as lobbying tools with politicians. Living Streets are also responsible for the national walk to school campaign. This has grown from a single annual focus week to WOW (walk on Wednesdays), a set up that rewards children for walking weekly.

Like LCC Living Streets have a network of local branches up and down the country. But are under represented in London. They are now hoping to replicate the success of the LCC in expanding their influence across the capital. A cross London group has been launched (London Living Streets) chaired by Alistair Hanton (who is also standing to be a LCC board member later this month. There has since been great interest in starting local groups.

Alan Combes already does stirling work representing Living Streets in Hackney but needs support. Richard approached Simon earlier this year suggesting affiliation with Hackney Cyclists following a suggestion by LBH’s new walking officer Inga Hutton. In her previous job in Harringey Inga was successful in getting the Council to adopt the Living Streets manifesto. TfL are also keen to receive more representation from pedestrians.

Affiliation would allow Hackney Cyclists to campaign on pedestrian issues when needs be or potentially for the group to prioritise pedestrian and cycling issues jointly. A decision to do so on a temporary footing until an independent group can be formed was passed at last month’s meeting. Simon suggested that an initial focus for the group might be encouraging LBH to adopt the Living Streets charter – something Inga is likely to support enthusiastically.

Simon explained that there are a few areas in which the Living Streets campaign is yet to reach an ideological consensus. A key area is with pavement cycling which many local branches focus on. The campaign is also yet to decide on the issue of naked spaces.

Initial campaigns for the Living Streets London Group include a petition for the introduction of pedestrian crossings on all arms of every signalised junction in London. They are also pressing for a rewrite of the Mayors very weak Walking Plan. A particular focus for this will be improved walking links across Thames Bridges as part of Congestion Charging measures.

After Simon had left, Trevor underlined the need to contact Alan Coombes to establish his thoughts on the best way for the relationship to work. In the mean time it was agreed that LCCiH should affiliate whilst seeking to promote a separate Living Streets group. Brenda will fill out the relevant paperwork. At a practical level this will mean continuing to comment on pedestrian issues on an ad-hoc basis in our consultation responses with a note regarding our affiliation.

3. Tour De France Grants

A possible £5000 is available to LBH as part of plans to promote cycling in advance of the Tour. They are looking to us for ideas. Any event would take place next June. The deadline for ideas is 17th November. Alex Stredwick has suggested a ‘Champions day’ in local parks. This could be expanded to a triathalon including swimming lessons at the Lido. Trevor suggested the money could be used to start a Hackney Sports cycling club.

Members to consider potential ideas and let Richard know.

Charlie noted that LCC central are organising rides to the Tour Prologue in Hyde Park. TfL will be giving this emmense publicity. This would be a great opportunity for us to arrange a feeder ride. We would receive several hundred pounds funding.

4. Events

Potential Doctor Bike at Old Gascoyne Estate: This estate benefited from the biggest of our installations as part of HomeBikePark with the conversion of an ex wash room to accommodate over 20 cycles. Trevor floated the idea of keeping the cycling ball rolling with a Doctor Bike event. He is looking for funding for 3 Dr Bikes for 4 hours.

School Travel Plan Event: Richard reported back that this event was a great success.

Shared Space Seminar: David Bonnet has not agreed to speak as had been previously thought – Disaster!

Burns night: This is our annual knees up/fund raising event. This years event will take place on 27th January. Brenda suggested she coordinate volunteer support this year and that this should start a bit earlier this year following last years last minute shortfall.

Action: Brenda to coordinate volunteers for cooking and to check Ben ok to take overall lead

Climate Change Rally: Richard has organised a family friendly feeder ride to Saturday’s rally. There will a bike park at the end of the march in Whitehall Place. If anyone would like to help out stewarding along the way then Richard would appreciate hearing from them.

5. Eco-active Bikes

Eco Active promote sustainability in Schools. They have a very expensive purpose built bike that carries a composting display. Adrian understands that this needs some maintenance and modification as its not currently being used much due to its weight. They would welcome hearing from anyone who can assist.

Action: Contact Therese and Patrick Fields to see if either can assist.

6. Updating the London Cycle Maps

TfL are appealing for advice from Boroughs and LCC groups to aid them in updating their free maps. The deadline for responses is 20th November. LBH have already pointed out that this is unreasonable though TfL are understood to have computer equipped cyclists already out on the streets checking for errors.

Action: David to coordinate responses from members. Charlie to e-mail group and send spreadsheet to David.

7. Council Liaison

Our regular liaison meeting with Hackney StreetScene? took place at the end of last month. This is now occurring every 4-6 weeks.

Amongst matters and schemes discussed:

Trevor and Oliver raised the issue of permeability past a number of road closures (we would prefer mode filters). LBH will have a look at these.

LBH presented the findings of a local cycle routes report to improve permeability.

Murray Grove in Hoxton will be given a cycle contraflow.

The absence of any entrance to the Olympics Park in the Borough is to be remedied with a gate by Victoria Park.

Paul Street/Tabernacle Street/Leonard Street Triangle – remedial works to bring signage up to spec

LCN+ Scheme on Route 10. Matthias Road / Wordsworth Road. Proposal to introduce traffic island to protect right turning traffic

Broadway Market / Landsdown Drive – basic junction concept for development still far short of the type of scheme we’d like to see.

Chatsworth Road/Powerscroft Road / Millfield Road

LCN+ Churchwell Path – Modification to path and junction approaches

Manor House / Woodbury Groove – Proposed traffic island to prevent two wheelers overtaking on the outside at this accident black spot.

8. A.O.B

Trevor reported that we are on the look out for a new home for our monthly workshop. A note of thanks to East London Recycling Workshop for the temporary home they have given us for the last 3 years.