Present: Huzaifa, Steve, Barry, Jon, David
Apologies from Sue Meredith.
Sue had told Jon earlier that she’d been told that the advanced stop box road markings for the Ashby Road/Storer Road/Radmoor Road junction are the mostly likely aspect of the recent consultation to be implemented, as there should be enough funding for that to happen at some point in the near future.
There is going to be a cycle maintenance workshop on Wednesday 20th May from just before 1pm until about 2pm. It is taking place on the University campus at the LAGS shed, which is situated at the rear of car park 5.
The group talked about how cycles could be given priority over other transport modes. Steve felt that cyclists were viewed as of lesser priority than both pedestrians and cars, and he suggested coloured road markings to reinforce where cycles have priority on the road. Huzaifa suggested having a campaign where we publicise photos of cars and vans parking over cycle ways where they aren’t allowed. The example of one of the worst locations for this is Fennel Street in Steve’s opinion. There seems to be a lack of enforcement.
ACTION: People are encouraged to take photos of transgression that can be publicised and passed to enforcement authorities.
Jon said there is a “cycle to work” day in early September, which is separate to the car free day that we’d decided didn’t have enough support to run events for. Not sure if anything is planned locally.
ACTION: Jon to contact University sustainability team and Leicestershire county council to see if there are any plans.
Steve suggested that council planners involved in laying out cycle paths should be invited to join local cyclists at peak times for a ride to actually experience how some of the infrastructure works and so they can see difficulties being encountered. This could be a continuation of our positive link with the local councils. Jon mentioned out that councils are limited in the changes they can make, both for financial and regulatory reasons. Steve pointed out that some cycle route provision encourages cyclists to continually leave and join the carriageway, which is quite dangerous and confusing to both cyclists and drivers.
It was pointed out to the group that cyclists also often disobey rules by riding on footpaths or the wrong way up roads and enforcement needs to tackle that too. These actions give cyclists a bad name, endanger pedestrians and a few transgressors give a negative opinion of the majority of cycle users amongst non-cyclists.
Huzaifa asked about revisiting the idea of providing eco-friendly driving information. This didn’t happen before because we couldn’t find a suitable speaker/trainer to hold an event. Huzaifa suggested that we could hold a simple event focusing on encouraging people to maintain their tyre pressures – this would just need a pressure gauge, a pump and somewhere to set up a stall/gazebo (possibly on the University campus). Barry said that his experience is that it is very difficult to persuade people to change driving habits unless they are presented with definite cost savings up front. It was later suggested (by Caroline at the following Energy group meeting!) that the Centre for Sustainable Energy have a “smarter driving” fact sheet and the Energy Saving Trust also have similar information on their website.