Elections

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Question 4 - we asked:

Do you support our view that traffic policing (including fining of cyclists without lights or using pedestrian-only pavements) should become a police priority?

We asked this question in all 15 wards, namely: Abbey, Arbury, Castle, Cherry Hinton, Coleridge, East Chesterton, Histon & Impington, King's Hedges, Market, Newnham, Petersfield, Queen Edith's, Romsey, Trumpington, West Chesterton.

30 of the 67 candidates (45%) who were asked this question responded as below.

Andrew James BOWER
(Conservative Party)

Yes, however enforcement of the law should be a matter of course and not just a 'priority'.

Donald Fisher DOUGLAS
(Conservative Party)

Yes, I agree that irresponsible cycling should be the subject of greater use of police resources. However enforcement of the law should be a matter of course and not just a ‘priority’.

Peter Norman HASE
(Conservative Party)

Yes. I fully endorse safe cycling and no lights is dangerous. I cycle at night and have learned to clip the lights to my person so I dont forget them on the bike. I would favour a Police warning scheme but better still, we should try to find a way for bike lights to be issued with sponsorship from local Cambridge business.

Using our footpaths is often ebcause the cyclist has no lights and in real terms is anti-social behaviour. We all do it but if we had better bike lane markings and better lighting, this could be reduced.

Christopher John HOWELL
(Conservative Party)

I think I understand where the campaign is coming from on this (the promotion of responsible cycling), but I am a bit loath to call it a priority, as it tends to become part of ‘initiative led’ policing that is then more about public impressions than solving problems.

I think the Conservative proposals for local democratically elected police commissioners is a great idea, so that the police become more responsive to local priorities generally. If this happened, my priorities like just about everyone you speak to on the doorstep would be more police walking the streets day and night, when stopping cyclists without lights/on the pavement etc would be a normal and expected part of this role.

James Andrew MARTIN
(Conservative Party)

Absolutely, although I would also stress enforcement of the law should be a matter of course and not just a new priority.

Richard Edward NORMINGTON
(Conservative Party)

Yes, however enforcement of the law should be a matter of course and not just a ‘priority’.

Hamish George DOWNER
(Green Party)

Yes, I do support this. Cyclists need the respect of pedestrians and other road users, this means that people who cycle aggressively on non-shared use pavements or who do not use lights should be reprimanded as this behaviour brings down the reputation of all cyclists.

My main methods of transport are by foot and by bike. I am a confident cyclist, so I am happy to cycle on the road all the time, or on appropriate cycle paths. But I can understand that some cyclists are intimidated on the roads, so I don't mind them occasionally using pavements, but only provided that they are slow and considerate on the pavement. I wouldn't want such cyclists to be reprimanded or fined.

But if someone is cycling fast through pedestrians (whether or not the pedestrian area is dual use, then I think they should be reprimanded.

Ceri Barbara GALLOWAY
(Green Party)

I support more training for cyclists from school age upwards to use the roads safely, especially for those who have never taken a driving test. It is important to act appropriately when cycling on joint use paths to protect pedestrians. Aggressive cycle path on and off road in never acceptable. Cycling without lights must be avoided on roads and cycle paths, as it is unsafe. Law enforcement is best used to deter cyclists who are insensitive to the needs of others and there are times when their approach should be flexible. For instance Cambridge City Council has made use of paths for cyclist in a creative joint usage. However there are times when it is difficult to determine were joint use starts and finishes e.g. Brooklands Ave. I’m concerned that cyclists will be penalised where joint use is unclear and this may put nervous cyclist off using cycle paths.

Jesse Liam GRIFFITHS
(Green Party)

Broadly, I do support this. Cyclists need the respect of pedestrians and other road users, and if we are to win the massive improvements in cycling provision in Cambridge which I think are needed, this is one aspect that needs to be tackled. However, it is also extremely important to emphasise that dealing with cyclists behaving badly should not be allowed to detract from other far more important traffic policing priorities, particularly speeding (including enforcement of 20 and 30mph zones) and dangerous driving, but also parking in cycle lanes and so on.

Stephen Roger LAWRENCE
(Green Party)

Lights: month-long blitz I think has been suggested -good - with a proportion of the fine going towards purchase of lights

Pavements: not so sure. Complex psychological issue, (perceived) safety, etc. Survey where pavement riding occurs, and ask why? - maybe desirable in this location? What groups are riding? kids? Amnesty during school movement times? (pavement riding linked to people without lights)

Shayne Mary MITCHELL
(Green Party)

Yes. But only in the context of a policy of traffic policing in general – ie cars with defective lights, speeding, dangerous driving, illegal parking, pavement parking, stopping in advance stop line areas, polluting vehicles, unlicensed/uninsured drivers, etc.

Pavement cycling – I think discrimination is needed. Certainly fast and inconsiderate cycling should be fined – having suffered poor balance and limited agility from a back injury, and having a small child, I know just how frightening it can be – but careful, slow cycling by those who feel unsafe on the roads should not be discouraged.

Gregory Michael PATTON
(Green Party)

Traffic policing should be in place to ensure that all users of the road and pavement can feel confident and safe. I support the view therefore that traffic policing should be a priority. However in return I believe the council has a responsibility to ensure that effective provisions are in place for cyclists to reduce the desire to use pedestrian-only pavements. I believe that traffic policing priorities should be based on a desire to reduce significant accidents. Therefore in some instances fining of dangerous cyclists should be a priority in other circumstances other policies would be more beneficial, including better education of cyclists, improved provisions for cyclists and ensuring motor vehicles also obey laws.

Peter Harry POPE
(Green Party)

Yes. Speeding cars and cyclists without lights are particular cases. I was particularly incensed on one occassion when I saw a cyclist without lights staring intently into his mobile phone!

Margaret Elizabeth WRIGHT
(Green Party)

Yes, I do support this. I would add any aggressive cycling not on road to this list . Cyclists need the respect of pedestrians and other road users, this means that people who cycle up one-way streets, on non-shared use pavements or who do not use lights should be reprimanded as this behaviour brings down the reputation of all cyclists.

Len FREEMAN
(Labour Party)

probably - but I'm not sure that this should be a high priority.

Jonathan Hugh GOODACRE
(Labour Party)

Yes, but it should be supported with strong supporting information to encourage as well as admonish. Of particular concern to me are cyclists going through traffic lights at red. Also, some students staying in Cambridge from abroad need much better guidance about cycling in this country. This would be a summer priority and is as much about good road safety awareness and compliance as about the specific issue of using pedestrian-only pavements for example.

Tariq SADIQ
(Labour Party)

I agree that this is important but I don't think it should be a policing priority given the many other pressures on police resources. A carrot and stick approach would be better - free or heavily discounted lights could be offered to cyclists as part of a campaign involving the Police, the Council and local bike shops followed by periods when the police implement a high profile clampdown.

Pamela Mary STACEY
(Labour Party)

I think more should be done to promote considerate use of paths and it is annoying when a cyclist comes towards you at speed when it is a pedrestrian-only pavement. I am sure most cyclists are sensible but as with all things the bad ones give the rest a bad name. The ones who completely ignore red lights, go across the road and end up facing the oncoming traffic just to avoid going around a roundabout, pull out onto the main road from the cycle path without bothering to look and seem to think they have their own protection shield so do not need lights. Likewise I can see no good reason why drivers think they have the right to block the cycle lane, they are not parking bays. If there was more enforcement then hopefully it would be of benefit for all users.

Lucy WALKER
(Labour Party)

Yes I do.
Whilst promoting the use of cycles it is very important that we encourage best cycling practice and expect the police to enforce such things as cycling with lights and not using pedestrian-only pavements. However, the latter remains a grey area while we are short of cycle lanes because many parents take their children on pavements as a safer alternative to using the road.
In my view, the use of cycle lanes should be part of traffic policing.

Simon Richard Ainsley WATKINS
(Labour Party)

Yes.

Andy BLACKHURST
(Liberal Democrat)

Obstructive parking has been one of the priority policing issues identified for the South Area, and I look forward to hearing feedback on how that is progressing at future South Area Committee meetings. Obviously, one has to balance competing demands on police resources, but cyclists riding without lights are certainly a danger to themselves and others.

Jonathan Peter CHATFIELD
(Liberal Democrat)

Absolutely. As a cyclist, motorcyclist and car driver, it is essential that the laws are enforced. Cycle lights are fundamental and a high profile campaign should be instigated to see an improvement in this area.

Steven Robert COOPER
(Liberal Democrat)

In principle, I would certainly like to see more enforcement against illegal cycling, but traffic policing has to become a GOVERNMENT priority before it can become a high priority for the police. Government funding for the police is inadequate and is certainly not aimed at traffic policing.

Mike DIXON
(Liberal Democrat)

This candidate has contacted the Campaign in response to the survey but has not given permission to make the response public.

Alan LEVY
(Liberal Democrat)

The police do have periodic clamp downs on specific traffic offences, including cyclists riding at night without lights, and I would certainly encourage them to continue doing this. The public also have a part to play in setting police priorities. At a recent North area committee for instance, local residents requested police representatives to enforce traffic regulations more actively in the area.

Michael Hal PITT
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes.

Unfortunately (and obviously) there are many competing demands on police resources which need to be balanced.

Cycling without lights is dangerous to the cyclist and others, and I would support a crackdown and more consistent enforcement. I'd also like to see cars running red lights dealt with more.

Ed SEXTON
(Liberal Democrat)

While cyclists without lights are often dangerous (usually to themselves), and cycling on pavements can inconvenience pedestrians, I would want to hear the opinions of police and others on the current level and nature of such incidents before advocating that traffic policing should become a police priority. Police resources are inevitably limited and must be allocated between many 'priorities' - e.g. most people in Abbey would put anti-social behaviour higher up the list than any form of traffic policing.

Julie Elizabeth SMITH
(Liberal Democrat)

I think it's really important to remind cyclists that the Highway Code applies to them. It would be good if the police were more pro-active regarding lights, cycling on pavements and jumping red lights. How far this can or should be a police priority obviously depends on a whole range of issues but it would be very helpful if cyclists were aware that they might be fined as this should act as a deterrent.

Tania ZMURA
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes! Riding illegaly on pavements; wrong way down one way streets (by the way permitted on the continent for cyclists); through red lights should be enforced very strictly; it is very dangerous for all concerned.

Tom WOODCOCK
(Respect)

Yes. However I also feel that the council should be making a positive step to provide more lighting on paths and routes used by cycle and pedestrians. The council should be pioneering carbon neutral and non light pollutant street and path lighting.

Marjorie Ruth Hadley BARR
(UK Independence Party)

I agree that the police should be stricter about enforcing the rules of the road where cyclists are concerned. I would like to add to the two offences you have mentioned that of crossing red lights at junctions instead of waiting for green.

Camcycle is a non-partisan body. All candidates are given an equal opportunity to submit their views. Information published by Camcycle (Cambridge Cycling Campaign), The Bike Depot, 140 Cowley Road, Cambridge, CB4 0DL.