The weather forecast was predicting rain and some strong winds so the destination of a well insulated, dry and extremely safe bunker seemed perfect.
As usual we met at Leytonstone station cafe and took the tube to Epping, to start the ride. Although wet, the weather was not too bad and nine of us took to the hills, Toot Hill in fact. On our way out we passed riders from the Hainault Roads cycling club completing a hilly 50k time trial. Note that we only passed them as they were coming the other way…
Near Navestock we had our only puncture, but this was soon fixed and we were on our way. Once again we entered the secret bunker via Beacon Hill, ignoring the warning signs, and parked our bikes next to the missiles for extra security. Following the coffee break we continued to Kelvedon Hatch and then to Stondon Massey and the Bricklayers Arms for the lunch stop. Refreshed we headed into the wind, although the rain had stopped, towards Ongar. This well cycled path took us past Greensted Church, back to Toot Hill and the rollercoaster. The advantage of the hills is that we were all warm as we concluded the ride at Epping. The time triallers were all long finished by then but we had enjoyed our route at a slower pace and witnessed the changing times as the secret place of greater safety for five hundred has become a museum .
As always, thanks to Robin for his excellent photos – https://www.flickr.com/photos/rsstephenson/albums/72157690137332453
A crew of 14 met at the Velodrome to discuss a wide range of topics:
We are expecting shortly to receive a copy of Newham’s Local implementation Plan (which sets out how the Council intends to spend its TfL transport infrastructure grant). This will need detailed consideration. TfL are expecting to announce their funding for Liveable Neighbourhood projects. we are optimistic that there may be one in Newham.
There was an update on the Stratford Gyratory cycle event run that afternoon afternoon by Newham Council. It gave an opportunity to chat generally with Council Officers. All “snagging” suggestions” for this scheme to go to Olawale (our Local Infrastructure Rep) for him to collate. we need to keep an eye on the restoration of bike parking and enforcement.
Our April meeting will be our Annual Meeting with guests. We will be electing officers and anyone who would like to contribute as an officer would be welcome. Formal notice will be issued later. We will also pursue a private meeting with key Councillors.
We discussed arrangements for a new partnership ride with Clapton FC from the Old Spotted Dog to their game at Wadham lodge on 27 April. Bike from Boleyn, another football related partnership ride, is scheduled for the following Saturday.
We discussed our contribution of organising a ride to support the relaunch of Redbridge LCC starting at the Quaker Meeting House on Bush Rd 2 March, 11.00 am.
We discussed suitable responses to the reconsultion on proposals to remove humps in Capel Rd.
We discussed a possible partnership with Stratford Original (a business improvement project) who are planning a event related to the new Stratford town centre layout.
We discussed the Council’s unsatisfactory plans for Greengate St/Barking Road and decided to take the matter up at the political level based on our response to the consultation.
We discussed development in the Olympic Park and Westfield, noting LLDC’s reluctance to follow the London Mayor’s new cycle standards, and the opportunity to leverage development funding for sustainable transport improvements.
A goodly crew of 15 gathered in Durning Hall, Forest Gate on 28 January for our first meeting of 2019 and the first for a couple of months. There were a number of interesting developments.
We discussed the briefing given by Murray Woodburn on Newham’s Local Implementation Plan (LIP) which is the bid for money from TfL for infrastructure projects. The bid has not yet gone to TfL to the change in the responsible Newham Cabinet Member, who had yet to approve it, and we were not shown any specific details. However from what Murray was able to show us from the general principles governing the bid were strong on sustainable transport. This year TfL are scrutinising LIP bids closely to ensure they contribute to the Mayor of London’s Vision and LCC itself is also looking at them closely. If the bid meets the principles it should pass these tests and, more importantly, progress sustainable transport in Newham.
Queeen Elizabeth Olympic Park: Following our letter on the inadequacies of the cycling provision in the Park (see earlier post), we have sent objections to LLDC in respect of the cycling provision included in the Stratford Waterfront proposal. Jonathan will represent us at the next meeting of LLDC’s Sustainable & Active Travel Group. Olawale is pursing a possible link with the Bobby Moore Academy which is also interested in pushing sustainable transport.
Olawale updated us on an audit rides of the Ilford – Barking-Barking Riverside and CS3 – Barking routes. He also reported that the “Ilford Gardens” scheme to improve Ilford Hill and the Romford Rd /North Circular junction was lilkely to start this year.
We decided to pursue an invitation from Stratford Original, the local Business Improvement District Group, to mark the completion of the Stratford gyratory works (when it happens). We are also pursuing various issues connected with these works.
We will contribute to the relaunch of hte Redbridge LCC group.
Our ride season has kicked off (see previous post). we tweaked our calendar.
It was a beautiful, bright and cold winter morning as we gathered outside the Parisienne cafe at Leytonstone station for our first ride of 2019. We took the tube to Epping and set off towards Toot Hill and Greensted. This section is known as the “rollercoaster”, as the road rises and falls in a similar fashion, a great way to get warmed up. St Andrews church provided an interesting stop and they also have a range of preserves for sale using an honesty box, which provided a shopping opportunity for some.
Unfortunately at the Mill lane turnoff some of the group were separated. Thanks to GPS and mobile phones we were easily able to identify a rendezvous point, the Top Oak pub, in Stapleford Abbots and this also became the lunch stop. Refreshed and sated we continued to Lambourne End then down the hill to Abridge, the intended lunch stop, over the river Roding at Passingford bridge and on to Theydon Bois. From here we had to carry our bikes over the footbridge to take the train back to Leytonstone. It was a great ride with a good turnout, sixteen riders of different ages and abilities riding the scenic, mostly traffic free, Essex lanes under the bright winter sun.
Fantastic photos (as ever) by Robin can be seen here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/rsstephenson/sets/72157704559216201
The prompt reply from Councillor Ali is as follows:
Dear Arnold, many thanks for your email and attachments covering your concerns regarding the above.
Clearly cycling and walking facilities are an integral part of our sustainable transport policies and great assets to help improve quality of air, health and well being of our community. You may be aware that later this month and in early February, the Council is having extensive public and stakeholder consultation in this regard and I look forward to contribution from groups like yours there.
I have forwarded your concerns to our officers for an update to
myself and Cllr Tripp. Once I have this, I will get back to you and if necessary meet to discuss any issues.
In any event I hope I will have the opportunity to meet you at the consultation events.
In addition LCC and ourselves we have raised concerns in respect of hte major Stratford Waterfront Development – largely on the grounds that this development should be an opportunity to correct some of the major defects in the cycling facilities in these areas.
Those wishing to see the submission should get in touch with me.
There will be a Newham Ride, with a heritage theme on 11 November 2018, starting from the View Tube Cafe at 10.30 am. A leisurely and quiet jaunt around some sites in the borough (or immediately adjacent) with a story to tell. At least one refreshment stop.
Here is some historical information and photographs that will be drawn upon:
A packed agenda stimulated some lively discussion.
Mike updated on the Greenwich and Woolwich footunnels, . We will pursue with Newham Council the updating of the bye-laws – which include pilot schemes permitting cycling, but may need adjustment to accommodate non-standard cycles.
Steve led discussion on rides. The last ride of the year with the AAA children’s cycle club will take place on 3 November with (possibly) a ride to the Fireworks later that evening, and a short Newham Ride with a heritage theme on 11 November.
Steve is working on next year’s ride calendar. The starting point will be this year’s rides, which have been successful in particular in attracting participants from outside Newham. We are looking for a broad range of ride leaders and can arrange training through LCC. If you have a ride you would be able to lead get in touch.
We celebrated our campaigning award on Stratford Town Centre (note, no longer a gyratory), particularly for Olawale who was not at the the LCC AGM to receive it.
The scheme has rightly been recognised for its quality. Some construction issues were highlighted and a further audit ride is planned. In the longer term we need to remain alert on 20mph, conflicts with pedestrians, and rat running in the margins of the scheme.
We are planning a audit ride for Quietway 22 (the Greenway), and discussed out continuing concerns with Quietway 6, across the north of the Borough which still under development .
We highlighted points to raise with Newham Council’s Sustainable Transport Officer (which will be posted separately following a meeting with him.)
(a) Bike for Boleyn are holding a Quiz Night on 23 November at East ham Working Mens Club, 7.30pm.
(b) Waltham Forest have expressed a desire to associate with our initiative on the QE Olympic Park – there being a meeting of the LLDC Sustainable Transport Group following July’s audit ride shortly.