Elections – Cambridge Cycling Campaign

Elections

Local elections (City/SouthCambs), May 2010: Romsey

Summary: Elections to Cambridge City Council (and South Cambs District Council) in May 2010.
Polling date: Thursday 6th May 2010
Ward:
Candidates
(by surname):
  • Hannah ALLUM  (Green Party)
  • Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON  (Labour Party)
  • Paul SAUNDERS  (Liberal Democrat)
  • Jane SLINN  (Conservative Party)
  • Tom WOODCOCK  (Cambridge Socialists)

Questions for Romsey ward candidates (7 questions)

Jump to question:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7 

# Question 1

In most terraced streets of Petersfield and Romsey, the public realm is dominated by parked cars. No space is made available for cycle parking, trees, and other amenities that would enhance the area. Car parking is squeezed into every available remaining space, yet there is a total absence of secure cycle parking. This inequity is one cause of the high levels of cycle theft in Cambridge. Would you support the introduction of on-street cycle parking racks on most such streets, even if it would mean the removal of one parking space on the street?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

Cambridge's lack of secure cycle parking is certainly a problem and rectifying it should be a top priority in Petersfield and Romsey. Where there is the opportunity for the council to acquire more open space, as at the Howard Mallett site in Petersfield, extra cycle parking should certainly form part of the development.

As far as removing car parking space goes, however, my views are more nuanced. I agree in principle that the ratio of cycle parking to car parking spaces needs to be improved, but not all residents of Petersfield and Romsey necessarily share my views. Where car parking space removal is being considered, residents should be consulted and where there is widespread opposition alternative plans must be sought. We cannot expect people to give up their cars according to the diktat of the council, as for many people, especially those who work outside the city, getting around by bike, foot and public transport alone is simply not practicable. We should strive to rectify this, but whilst we are doing so we should not antagonise motorists to no good end, as this will merely engender a backlash.

An exception to this principle of no removal of parking space without consultation, however, must be applied when considering shops and pubs. It is not rare to find upwards of two dozen bikes outside the Empress or the Cambridge Blue which block the pavements and constitute a public nuisance. In these cases there is very clearly a need for cycle parking, whatever it has to replace.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

Plainly facilities for cycles are inadequate in many places and this may well be a good idea for some streets. However, each street is different and the residents should be consulted as to the appropriate local solution: there may be other innovative uses of space that can be exploited if we can engage the local community.

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 2

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

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

Certainly. I would also like to see the police pay greater attention to cycling offences outside the centre of the city, especially at the start of university terms. As it stands students cycling the wrong way down Trinity Street in the first week of term will be stopped, but instances of dangerous cycling in Romsey are rarely likely to be witnessed by the police. Greater enforcement here would be a positive boon to cyclists, as it would help to ameliorate to some degree the obvious bitterness many motorists and pedestrians have towards cyclists as a whole.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

Yes, but with reservations. Joint council/police campaigns to encourage cycle lights in autumn's darker evenings will have their place too: and the outcome may not always be a fine. Police priorities must change in response to circumstances. Further, we should also look to the cause as well as the punishment: are cyclists are on the pavement because the road is obstructed by delivery trucks at peak hours? Is on road cycling provision inadequate? I suspect it is

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 3

We believe that 20mph should be the norm for local streets in residential areas (as distinct from main connecting roads). 20mph would: greatly encourage walking and cycling; improve the quality of life in an area for residents; and would not delay car journeys significantly (because only the start/end of a journey would be affected). Do you agree that 20mph should become the norm for local streets in Cambridge and surrounding villages?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

Here in Romsey Labour have been calling in our newsletters for an expansion of the 20mph zone in North Romsey to encompass the entire area between Mill Road and Coldham's Lane. There is also a good case for this to be extended to the Argyle Street area and for greater action to be taken against rat-running there.

Brooks Road, Coldham's Lane and Mill Road all need a speed limit higher than 20mph (although there is a definite need for road safety improvements on all three). Otherwise I believe a 20mph zone should, subject to public consultation, be introduced in residential roads throughout Cambridge. This would obviously need to be accompanied by coordinated measures to try to increase enforcement of such limits.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

Most of the residential streets in Romsey already have 20 mph. The question now is what about the shopping and amenity areas such as Mill Road itself?

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 4

Do you actively support the proposed construction of a 3,000-space cycle park at Cambridge station? What measures do you believe should be taken to ensure that construction starts soon? In the meanwhile what urgent measures should be taken to add to and improve the existing highly unsatisfactory cycle parking provision?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

I wholeheartedly support the construction of a 3,000-space cycle park at the station and believe that further provision is likely to be necessary in addition to that. I believe the council and Network Rail need to liaise to promote new and innovative ideas for bike storage.

There is obviously the problem that the CB1 development's S106 agreement is defective, which has allowed the developer to delay construction of the cycle park. If elected, I will pursue every possible legal avenue to try and ensure that such attempts to 'wiggle out' of the deal are thwarted and that the station gets the cycle parking it desperately needs.

In the meantime, clear-ups of abandoned bikes need to continue and when there is excess capacity in the car parks the possibility of turning some of it into temporary cycle storage needs to be pursued.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

I can only agree that we need better cycle parking at the station and that we need it urgently.

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 5

Two-way cycling in one-way streets produces increased cycling safety and convenience, because it allows cyclists to avoid longer routes on busier roads. This is the norm in many European cities. Following the success of allowing two-way cycling using clear ‘No Entry Except Cycles’ signs in Petersfield, would you support opening all the streets in your ward to two-way cycling?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

I am supportive of the introduction of two-way cycling to one-way streets. In parts of Romsey, however, the streets are simply too narrow. A good example of this would be Sedgwick and Catharine Streets.

I am open to hearing the case made for two-way cycling in one-way streets on a case by case basis. Sometimes it may be appropriate, sometimes we must look for alternative options.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

Where possible this is a good idea and I would support it. Not, however, not for all the streets in Romsey: some streets are very narrow with cars parked on both sides and would present their own danger to cyclists.

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 6

What do you think should be done, in addition to the measures already approved, to improve the poor walking and cycling environment on Mill Road?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

I cannot support the Cycle Campaign's vision for a largely car-free Mill Road. I do not believe that this is workable, as the rest of Cambridge's road network can barely cope with its present load and would collapse if motorists were driven out of Mill Road, whilst the effect on local businesses would be likely to be serious. Nor am I entirely convinced by the traffic calming scheme mentioned in Newsletter 86.

This obviously lessens the improvements that can be made to the walking and cycling environment. The former would tend to require more pavement, and this cannot be delivered whilst Mill Road is used by cars. In the case of the latter, I would suggest that speed cameras may be needed by Brookfield's Hospital to slow motorists down. However, the narrowness of the street currently renders it difficult to accomplish any particularly radical change.

I would therefore say that the main improvement that could be made is for existing restrictions to be enforced more strongly on Mill Road.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

It is hard to deal with Romsey in isolation. We need to challenge the county council presumption of priority for the needs of motor traffic with a city wide traffic management plan that took real account of future cycling and pedestrian needs. Could, for example, key amenity areas, such as Mill Road, be made less attractive to through-traffic? Could through traffic on these routes be one-way?

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

# Question 7

Do you have any other general cycling-related comments or points? And what support have you given for cycling and walking, or sustainable transport more generally, in the past?

Hannah ALLUM
(Green Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Browne Edward Bengt CARLSSON
(Labour Party)

I'm a member of Cambridge Cycle Campaign and am very proud that Cambridge has such an effective cycling lobby. Not having found time in my life to learn to drive thus far, I am immensely grateful that there are others putting pressure on the authorities to take into account those of us who are not motorists.

In Cambridge I think we need to promote cycling especially amongst those who do not currently cycle. Even those who primarily get about by bike will prefer to have a car if they have the option for long journeys and for reaching areas where public transport is almost non-existent. Nevertheless, if these cars remain at home, they are causing no problems except in respect of taking up cycle parking.

I also think that promotion of cycling cannot simply be about utility. Riding a bike is fun and I think this is sometimes a point that gets missed. The exercise, the adrenaline rushes and the pleasure of a corner smoothly taken are some of the major reasons I cycle. If we're going to get more people on to bikes, we need to evangelise about these benefits much more.

Paul SAUNDERS
(Liberal Democrat)

I joined the Cambridge Cycling Campaign earlier this year but have been a keen cyclist for years. In town I walk or cycle. During the summer I can often be found out of town: the Roman Road south of Cambridge is a particular favourite.
I think we should be careful to look at Cambridge’s wider transport needs. In particular public transport provision, park and ride etc. These are essential for environmental (climate change and peak oil) reasons and by reducing traffic in the centre make walking and cycling both safer and a more pleasurable experience.

Jane SLINN
(Conservative Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Tom WOODCOCK
(Cambridge Socialists)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.

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.