On Thursday 18 May, Camcycle placed a ‘ghost bike’ at the site on Oakington Road near Girton where 14-year old Isla Cochrane was killed last year. The bike was surrounded by white doves in solidarity with the annual week of action by the charity RoadPeace, which campaigns for ‘Vision Zero’, a project that seeks to eradicate all traffic deaths and serious injuries.
Locally, the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Vision Zero Partnership has a target to halve the number of road deaths and serious injuries on roads, cycleways and footways in the region by 2030, and to eliminate them by 2040. However, the multi-organisational group is not delivering on the actions needed to meet these targets and over 300 people per year are still being seriously hurt or killed on our region’s roads. Action is needed on all parts of the Vision Zero Partnership’s ‘Safe System’ approach and Camcycle would like to see a particular emphasis on speed reduction and improved active travel infrastructure to help keep people walking and cycling safe.
Josh Grantham, Camcycle’s Infrastructure Campaigner said:
“All deaths on our roads are avoidable tragedies and it’s been really disappointing to see the Vision Zero Partnership regularly missing their own targets on reducing road harm. We welcome the progress made by the county council on projects such as the countywide scheme for more 20mph zones and call for faster action on the walking and cycling routes that will keep people of all ages and abilities safe.”
Ciara Twomey and Guy Cochrane, Isla’s parents, said:
“Isla’s death has destroyed the hopes and plans of a fabulous young person, just starting out in life. Losing her has been devastating for our family; the deep pain is impossible to describe. Her death has also affected many others, including her extended family and all her young friends. We hope that the ghost bike will serve to remind passing road users and planners of the vulnerability of cyclists when in proximity to cars, the need to always remain observant and aware on every journey, and the importance of giving space and reducing speed.”
Camcycle put its first and second ghost bikes in place following the deaths of cyclists at junctions in Cambridge and on the A1303. The bikes aim to stand as a memorial to all those killed and seriously injured on our roads and to raise awareness of the need for urgent action. The charity’s road safety work includes a campaign for Safe Junctions: read more at camcycle.org.uk/safejunctions
Find out more about the national charity Roadpeace at roadpeace.org
Find out more about the Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Vision Zero Partnership at cprsp.co.uk