Readout from 30 September Meeting

A wet night might have accounted for a slight drop in numbers for our meeting at the Beckton Community Centre, but there was no shortage of lively discussion.

We were pleased to welcome Councillor James Asser, newly appointed as Cabinet Member for Environment, Highways and Sustainable Transport. Before his appointment he had previously engaged with us by attending our Annual Meeting and our Councillor Ride. He mentioned that a new Director of Highways had been appointed.

Kerena updated on the activities of the Newham Climate Collective which brings together organisations interested in Newham Council’s initiatives to fight global warming, poor air quality and waste. We are a strong voice in this group. It will next be meeting on 7 October to consider Newham’s draft Air Quality Action Plan, on which consultation ends on 14 October.

We agreed that Newham Cyclists should put in a specific response in addition to anything produced by the NCC, and put together a co-ordinating group. However everyone is encouraged to participate as individuals in the Council’s online consultation. Specific points raised were: (a) the Cycle Strategy invoked in the draft needs to be actively implemented, (b) maximum leverage should be extrated from new developments and (c) all Council developments should be looked at with an eye to active travel and monitored – in paticular that infrastructure conducive to active travel is restored if removed for any reason.

Possible planning applications for a lorry park/distribution centre in Silvertown and the expansion of London City Airport were discussed. It was clarified that Newham Council still retained its planning and other powers in respect of the Royal Docks Enterprize Zone.

A panel discussion on cimate changed is planned at the LCC annual Meeting on 16 October.

On infrastructure:

  • It was agreed that an infrastructure group with a core of Olawale, Johnathan, Chris and Arnold – but open to anyone interested- should focus on infrastructure issues and take the load of the monthly meetings. To this end also regular updates of the Cycling Issues chart will be posted on the website to inform those interested.
  • The issues surrounding the MSG development in Angel Lane were discussed. Whilst it is opposed on infrastructure grounds by TFL the development is not likely to go away. However it should not compromise the surrounding area (Stratford Station, Montfichet Rd and Penny Brookes St and Angel Lane – all key points for active travel.
  • There is still time to submit “quick wins” for minor improvements in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park.
  • Enforcement cameras have not yet been installed for the Browning Rd bridge but should come shortly. We agreed to monitor the effect once the cameras had been installed and bedded in.
  • The pilot School Streets were going to be introduced in phases. The need for new schools to design in air quality was raised.
  • In general enforcement (of parking, littering, and to prevent engine idling) was becominng more important. Councillor Asser encouraged use of the “Love Newham” App.

We finishedwith a reminder of the success of the car free day. We had participated in events in Stratford (where there were a variety of activities – see photos – but no street closures) and in Tylney Rd (which was partially closed for play). The success of the event in Warrior Square Manor Park demonstrated the appetite for liveable streets.

A variety of bikes on display and in use at the Stratford Car Free Day event.
Smoothies also available with a bit of effort.

Arnold

Newham Ride 29 September 2019

Rain before and rain after kept the crowds away from what proved, for Viv, Jonathan and myself to be a ride in dry – if grey- weather. We took in theusual, but ever changing sights of Newham, including Lyle Park, Tinity Buoy Wharf (where the only hint of rain came whilst lunch was being taken) East India Dock, Cody Dock and Three Mills.

Lunch stop at Trininty buoy Wharf where an excellect piece of sculpture has been retained during building works elsewhere

One puncture from the usual glass on the cycle lanes around Beckton. Also the sight of systematic car parking on shared use pavement in the Queen Elizabeth Olympic(Car) Park.

Arnold

Late September Ride and Meeting

A Newham Ride will take place on Sunday 29 September -starting from the View Tube Cafe at 10.00am.

Our regular monthly meetings resume on 30 September at 7.30pm at Beckton Community Centre, 14 East Ham Manor Way, E6 5NG. Lots of interesting matters to discuss including significant political and infrastructure developments and our role in the Climate Change movement.

Arnold

Infrastructure News

It has been a busy time for Newham cyclists and our infrastructure team. We have had a number of recent meetings with Council Officials and responded to a number of consultations.

This document provides a summary of major issues in the borough with which we are currently actively concerned. It was updated following a regular catch up meeting with Newham Council a month ago. Items in red have arisen since. Of particular interest are:

  • Manor Park rat running – item 13
  • Barking Rd corridor (Greengate St and Green St Junctions) – items 1 and 7
  • Romford Rd corridor – items 1 and 19
  • Liveable Neighbourhoods (Custom House and North Newham) – item 2
  • The MSG development near Westfield – part of item 6.

If you would like further details of any of the matters addressed in this document or about other matters not addressed in it please e-mail me on newham@lcc.org.uk

Arnold

Readout of meeting of 29 July 2019

We started with an evening ride from Forest Gate around the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. We saw the newly opened section of the Greenway before moving on to Crate for refreshment and a short discussion.

  • Michale Barratt, TfL’s Development Impact Manager, told us he was having discussions with Newham Council’s Network Management team and we agreed to maintain contact (whilst being wary that this department had a done little in the past to promote cycling in Newham). This initiate should benefit pedestrians , site workers, the less able as well as those that cycle.
  • The disappointing backtracking by Newham Council in respect of theBrowning Road bridge (see previous post). This issue gives greater urgency to our efforts to link with other like minded groups promoting a better environment and better neighbourhoods for Newham.
  • We will give feedback to LCC that scheduling the Freecycle in August made it difficult for us to provide marshals for the feeder ride.
  • We discussed forthcoming events on 22 September (Car Free Day) and 5 October (Bike from Boleyn).
  • We will seek discussions with Newham Council over the defective scheme for the junction of Greengate St and Barking Road.
  • We noted that staff at the Financial Conduct Authority found parking in Startford so cheap compared with Canary Wharf that commuting by car had increased.
  • We discussed the possibilities of hiring and/or hiring out a cargo bike.

Our next meeting will be 30 September – details to be confirmed.

Arnold

AAA Ride 27 July 2019

Despite rain the children of the saturday cycle club run by hte charity Ambition, Aspire, Achieve, were keen togo out for a ride. They (and we) were rewarded by the rain stopping. We used the Greenway, including the newly opened section north of Stratford High Street, and the Olympic Park for an enjoyable (mostly off-road) ride.

We will be looking at running another round of fixing /ride on consecutive Saturdays in the autumn.

Arnold

TfL Cycle Parking Strategy

This strategy has just been published. For some local flavour:

  • a map on page 10 shows that Newham’s on-street parking mirrors outer London rather than inner London;
  • a map on page 13 shows the routes in Newham with a top 5% potential for cycling (as first revealed in TfL’s Strategic Cycling Analysis of June 2017);
  • a map on p 14 shows a strong demand for additional on-street parking in the Beckton area;
  • a map on p 24 shows Forest Gate, Canning Town and East Ham as Town Centres with high demand for cycle parking;
  • page 30 ff provides evidence that cycle parking (over car parking) benefits Town Centres;
  • a map onn p 33 shows the location of cycle hangers over London. Newham has a relatively low provision for hte density of its population.

Arnold

Rainham Ride Report and latest news

14 July was the new summer date for our traditional 25 mile ,off road (mostly) saunter to Rainham Marshes and Upminister. The weather was no better than on our previous September/October rides – but we escaped any rain (but suffered one puncture)..

The route was as interesting as ever.

  • We saw some frantic working on the northern section of the Greeway in preparation for its opeing the following day after being closed for more than a decade.
  • There are signs of the massive development of Barking Riverside.
  • We had a short stop in Rainhm Hall – the subject of an interesting blog by Diamond Geezer on 18 July.

The following Saturday we did some bike fixing at the AAA Fun Day. The all-ability bikes are particularly vulnerable to malfunction and present a challenge to repair. Nevertheless we ensured that a couple more would be available.

Other news:

  • Our next AAA ride is this Saturday 27 July leaving 10.30 from the Arc – see rides.
  • We have submitted strong support for the 5 pilot School Streets. These are all relatively easy to implement. We have suggested extending the scope in some cases and commented that they should be a stepping stone to proper Liveable Neighbourhood schemes.
  • There is an important current consultation on the “Greater Carpenters Neighbourhood Plan” – an area important for cycling and walking connections to the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. The plans look – typically for the LLDC – deficient.
  • There is a current consultation on closing the bridge at Browning Rd to through traffic to lessen rat running in Manor Park.
  • We looked with TfL and Newham Council at the the Romford Rd corridor.
  • The consultants for the developers of the MSG Square have contacted us after our objection to their seriously deficiant plans after our objection had been lodged. However they have not yet been able to indicate that they would contemplate changing them (and they are likely to be supported by the LLDC Planning team); nor have they shown any interest in a site visit to look again at the cycling angle.
  • We understand and hope that Newham Council are looking again at their original (poor) proposals for the Greengate St/Barking Rd junction.
  • Our next meeting is 29 July – an short evening ride followed by a chance for some informal discussion – see events.
  • LCC are holding a social at at 6:00PM in Look Mum No Hands (49 Old St, London EC1V 9HX).  All are welcome.
  • Steve has devised an exciting new route for our feeder to the Freecycle on 3 August. More marshals would be greatly approciated for this event which is both fun and important in promoting cycling.
  • I will be leading a feeder ride to a cycle fun event in Greenwich Park on 17 August – see rides.

Arnold

Forest Gate Festival 6 July 2019

A long and successful day at the Forest Gate Festival. A wide rota of us spend all day fixing and talking bikes. This in addition to Dr Bike who was operating next door. We recycled a number of bikes and bits of equipment that had been donated to us for this purpose and received just over £150 in donations.