Notes on Transport Group Meeting 25th Feb 2015

Sue linking to Councillor Marion Smith about Cycling

Sue said Councillor Marion Smith talked to her at the recent Potato Day stall about cycling issues. The Councillor has already met with the officer concerned with cycling. Sue has tried to provide her with a document detailing some of the issues we have discussed in the Transport group over the past few months, but she has had trouble opening the file so Sue is going to try to give her the information again.

We discussed the problems about working out which council people need to contact for transport infrastructure issues and it was suggested that we provide that information to the community as we find out. Paul noted that Derby and Nottingham are going through a process that will rationalise county and borough councils into single organisations, which may make this issue go away.  That merger process might spread to Leicestershire at some point in the future.

Contacting Choose How You Move Team in Leicester County Council

Jon explained that he’d contacted the LCC Choose How You Move Team and had a conversation about links between our two web sites. He’s also tweaked the Transport pages on the TL website so that it only promotes the LeicesterSHARE car sharing scheme that LCC are promoting.  The journey planner still has some issues which he had reported back to them.

State of Ashby Road for cyclists

Paul, Sue and Barry were going to meet with Martin O’Connor on Monday but unfortunately had to cancel due to illness. They’re planning on trying the meeting again on 23rd March as Marrtin is keen to get their input. We talked about the layout of the Radmoor Road/Storer Road/Hastings Road junction and how it could be made safer for cyclists:

One problem at this junction is that cyclists coming from the Sainsburys/town centre end of Ashby Road wishing to go up Storer Road can clash with traffic coming the other way down Ashby Road from the University/M1 that wants to turn right into Radmoor Road.  Several suggestions were mooted including providing a ramp from the road onto the pavement before the Radmoor Road crossing point, providing a cyclist green “box” for right hand turns into Storer Road, and two way cycle traffic along Hastings Street to provide an alternative route into/out of the area behind the Catholic church.  Other suggestions are welcome!

Leicester Park and Ride Solar Idea

Jon explained that the Park and Rides around Leicester are run jointly by Leicester City Council and Leicestershire County Council. It costs them £664K p.a. and is currently being run at a loss, resulting in the bus prices rising. Electric vehicle charging was also provided and there are already low carbon aspects to some of the power use at the sites. David’s original idea of a solar farm co-located at the Park and Ride sites needs more fleshing out, but it could tie in with Leicestershire County Council’s desire for more community energy schemes, as well as providing income and power for the site to help cut running costs.  Green Fox are a Leicester based community energy group that may be amenable to this sort of scheme.

ACTION: Jon to contact Green Fox, Transition Leicester and folk in Leicestershire County Council to see if a community energy scheme could be a goer for the P&R sites.

Feedback on Grant Failure for Cycle Workshop

Sue had a conversation with someone from the Quakers who pointed her to a group called Pedallers Arms in Leeds (not Bradford as reported before) that do a 5 hour workshop for £60.  This was part of the reason our bid was seen as having a poor cost-benefit. The Leeds group also do something called the “M-check”. Sue said she could contact them to see if they would be willing to come to Loughborough, as this sort of price could be funded from existing ring fenced Quaker money in the Transition account.

There was also the idea of “edge funding” – which might be a source of funding for cycle workshops. It aims to provide funding to activities promoting fundamental social change, which might cover some plans for cycle workshops for disadvantaged youth.

ACTION: Sue to contact in Leeds to see if they could come and also see if we could apply for a Community Solutions Grant.

ACTION: Jon to look to see if that would be able to fund us.

Charnwood Borough Council Core Strategy Inspection

Paul went to the inspection of the CBC Core Strategy which is supposed to cover sustainability. Garendon housing development isn’t decided yet, but seems to be predicated on lots of roads and car ownership. Paul said that the inspector found parts of the Core Strategy unacceptable, but the council could tweak it to allow it to pass. However this means that there should be another six weeks of public consultation.

Funding Meeting from Leicestershire County Council

Jon described the meeting he went to organised by Leicestershire County Council. The basic take home message was that government supplied grants are falling and community groups will need to find alternative ways of funding what they do, yet may be asked to provide extra help and services to replace those being shed by the public sector. Examples of potential income streams were commercial provision of services feeding profits back into community schemes, community organised energy systems, social loans for building/expanding charities and social enterprises and private grants from high net worth individuals. Jon had sent notes on the meeting to the Transition Loughborough Google Group mailing list after the event.

Date of next meeting

Thursday 26th March at 7.30pm in Beale Room, Rosebery St Peters Community Centre, Storer Road.

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