Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Cycling in Kennington and people on bikes

I can't believe I didn't spot this before, but somebody has started a new local cycling blog, Kennington People On Bikes. It details a recently won bid to set up a cycle hub project for Lilian Baylis (and other local) schools.  I note with interest the fact that the bike project was initially unable (see entry on 1st March) to obtain meeting space in the Sports Action Zone on the former Lilian Baylis site.  However, it appears that a meeting with the Director of SAZ resolved that... 

More recently, KPOB have turned their attention to corresponding with Princes ward councillors and candidates re. their views on cycling in the area.  If you are passionate about being on two wheels (or three!), it's a good time to be quzzing candidates on their cycle-friendly policies.  I note with interest the suggestion of bringing down speed limits to 20mph, in some areas. That would be one consideration re. reducing casualities on some of our trunk routes, and would be good for pedestrians too (although I can't see drivers being keen).  I'm often struck by the fact that Kennington (and undeniably, Vauxhall) can feel rather like a "through-route" for heavy goods vehicles accessing the rest of London.  Since we're soon to have our "bike hire" scheme bikes installed all over SE11, now is probably the time to increase the focus on road safety.  (Visions of untrained tourists hopping on to hired cycles and heading down Kennington Park Road to the Elephant roundabout fill me with dread).

The Cycling hub project may well be looking for volunteers, or have meeting times to publicise in the near future.  I'll post it as soon as I've obtained further info.

In the meantime, I telephoned TFL (8th April) to see when our new CS7 route cycle "superhighway" would be completed in SE11.  The person I contacted said it would be finished in "the next month or so".  I've no details on whether TFL have started painting the roads blue (is that the opposite of painting the town red?) and moving street furniture in deepest south London (other than a short trial stretch), so would be grateful for more info.


Anonymous said...

ah, the moral certainty of the militant cyclist...!

frankly many cyclists in SE11 are pests. running the gauntlet crossing the road at Kennington Cross each day is pretty hazardous because of the number of red light jumpers.

many of these are passing through from SW9 and beyond, but until the cyclists we have start obeying the rules I see no need to make further provisions for them.

SE11 Lurker said...

As it happens, I'm a cyclist, pedestrian, car-driver and happy public transport user. I really am not in any way a militant cyclist (I rarely cycle when it's raining or on weekdays).

I would happily and whole-heartedly support increased resources for the policing of cyclists. We need to issue on the spot fines for cycle offences, but at the same time realise that many traffic lights are phased badly for cyclists, so an all-round policy needs to be thought about. Many cyclists do cycle badly, and many drivers drive badly, and many pedestrians are so busy on their phones that they don't even notice traffic.

I witnessed only yesterday a courier cyclist nearly knock a pedestrian down on the Lambeth Bridge zebra crossing and I'd be the first to acknowledge bad cyclists. But I would rather that bad drivers/cyclists/pedestrians were not used as examples to consider policy and provision.

At the end of the day, I agree that bad cyclists can kill pedestrians and other cyclists, but mostly, it's motor vehicles that are involved in fatalities with cyclists and I really want that to stop, especially as we're encouraging children on to the roads.

thereverent said...

When I cycle into work from SW9 across Kennington Cross mostr cyclist obey the red light. Kennington Cross is also a favouite for police stings on red light jumpers.

Prehaps you also think that nothing should be done to the roads unil all drivers obey the rules (speeding, ASLs, etc)?

Anonymous said...

There's a small burst of a blue lane down Clapham Road, near The Circle pub. I just noticed it on my way to work the other day. It's probably not longer than a couple hundred metres, if that.

Sid Boggle said...

The lights at Kennington Green are notorious for cyclists heading towards C London ignoring red lights. My elderly mum was routinely the victim of near-misses as she waited for the signal to cross on the way to the Post office, only to be cut up by some ponce in his Lance Armstrong pyjamas ignoring the red light.

In the end, I had to go with her, and stop these idiots.

Similarly, the crossing by Kennington Tube in the rush hour is a joke. I don't wish cyclists ill, but, you know...

Anonymous said...

The most regularly outrageous behaviour I see EVERY DAY, are cyclists speeding down the pavement along the Albert Embankment. They seem to believe that it is a bona fide cycle lane rather than a pedestrian walkway. There are scores of them every day and they go FAST.

Recently there have been CSO patrols in the evenings but the cyclists just speed by and ignore them!

Anonymous said...

cyclists are mostly educated middle class types who care about the environment, so this type of anti-social behaviour is actually ok.

Charlie Holland said...

I want a more mellow local environment - where all road users are considerate of each other

I would like to see the Safer Neighbourhood Teams locally adopt inconsiderate road usage as a priority - tackling irresponsible people whether in a car, on a bike on on Shanksy's Pony.

I believe 20mph in residential areas will help make this happen.

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