Elections – Cambridge Cycling Campaign

Elections

2015 City Council election: West Chesterton

Summary: 2015 elections to Cambridge City Council
Polling date: Thursday 7th May 2015
Ward:
Candidates
(by surname):
  • Har Hari KAUR  (Green Party)
  • Mary Elspeth KING  (UK Independence Party)
  • Mike SARGEANT  (Labour Party)
  • Damien TUNNACLIFE  (Liberal Democrat)
  • Linda YEATMAN  (Conservative Party)

Questions for West Chesterton ward candidates (7 questions)

Jump to question:  1   2   3   4   5   6   7 

# Question 1

Cambridge Cycling Campaign has created a guide to cycling best-practice called Making Space For Cycling, endorsed by all national cycling organisations. Do you fully support this guide, and if so, what one principle in it do you think could most effectively be applied in your ward?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Totally support what you are doing for cyclists. Really through and visionary approach. Thank you. I totally concur with The Bicycle Association when they say: 'the future of everyday cycling is crucially linked to making out cities, towns and streets attractive for people to live and work'. I would add that there are tangible knock on effects to our health and well being as well as our sense of community.

As for West Chesterton, there are obviously issues around Staples corner leading up to Chesterton road where I always feel very wobbly where the bike lane just disappears as it comes up to the pedestrian crossing at Jesus Green Lock.
In general whilst cycling in this ward and around Cambridge generally that a lot if tines cars of cone too close, that the cycle lane is not fully respected by car drivers and I would like to see more in the driving test around cycling before a driver is qualified to drive.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

This is good for new developments starting from scratch but design compromise is required in a town like Cambridge with very restricted space where other road users need to be taken into account....pedestrians, disabled, public transport passengers and motorists....who all expect to be represented by Councillors... not just cyclists.
Making Space also needs to be used in conjunction with other design guides, for example, the SUSTRANS design guide.
I West Chesterton I was involved in getting cycle lanes in Gilbert Road, but the scheme at the junction with Milton Road hasn't been entirely successful with cars heading south on Milton Road driving over the cycle lane while cars are trying to turn left into Gilbert Road. It also demonstrates the gaps where there is about 10 metres between Gilbert Road and the dual use cycleway heading north on Milton Road.
I would campaign for an on road cycleway from Mitcham's Corner to Elizabeth Way to avoid conflict with pedestrians.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

I am not familiar with the guide to best practise called Making Space for Cycling, so I cannot comment...

# Question 2

What measures would you like to see to improve the safety of children getting to school?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Compulsory cycle lessons. Not optional extra. Part of educational life. There are good courses which need to be more comprehensively taken up by children when young. This will set up good patterns for their cycling lives.
I'd like to see traffic lights on Milton road, by the hungry horse pub.
I'd like to see the 20mph limit on Milton road, up to the science park.
There's a lot of children crossing Milton road to get home and it's the main route to town from arbury through the shortcut.
I'd like to see the introduction of yellow vests for all child cyclists.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

I would want more segregated cycle routes and dangerous junctions made safe. The Bikeability scheme should be available in all primary schools and extended to lower secondary schools to improve pupils' skills, road sense and confidence.We also need a catch up scheme for older pupils who will need to cycle to Long Road and Hills Road through the City Centre to the Six Forms.
We should also encourage parents to not drive their children to school, particularly if they live close to school. That will improve safety for all and would be good for everybody's health and better for the environment.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

All schoolchildren should be made to pass a Cycling Proficiency Test before cycling to school, either accompanied by a parent or other adult, or on their own.
All Cyclists should wear high viz clothing, children included, and helmets.

# Question 3

What experience do you and your family have of cycling? Do you have any different concerns about younger or older family members cycling than you do yourself?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Not good I'm sorry to tell you.
My 16 year old daughter was killed on Milton road 2 years ago in November.
Hence my ideas re children, and Milton road, above.
The driver did not admit to it but the forensic evidence was that the car was indicating and she cycled across but the car didn't turn right after all.

My experience of cycling in Cambridge is mixed.
I don't have a car so cycle everywhere, and I know the quiet routes so usually take them.
For me, the basic issue is that cars and cyclists need to come to some respectful understanding of each other's rights and responsibilities on the road.
The worst drivers in my existence are taxi drivers and there perhaps needs to be some education for them around cyclists. Training, which the council could insist they take. Based on at- home reading and watching videos and sending in reports to questions, similar to the format you have provided for the candidates but with different questions of course. It would help cyclists a lot. Because whilst I understand the need for separation of cars and bikes, the Dutch system relies on drivers doing the right thing for it to work.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

I cycle daily to and from the University of Cambridge West Cambridge site as well as around the ward and into Cambridge. I have been knocked off my bike 3 times on Milton Road - once sustaining a broken collar bone, so I a well aware of the dangers. My son and daughter also use their bikes daily. My son benefited from a County Council training scheme and is a confident cyclists - 1 of the few at the University of Hull who cycles to lectures. My daughter cycles regularly to and from Fulbourn and I have concerns about lighting and cycling provision of the route from Marshalls.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

Until I was approx. 65 I cycled all over Cambridge. My husband is in a wheelchair so he obviously cannot cycle. When visiting home our grown-up children sometimes cycle, and for 5 years our youngest daughter cycled to school. Safety of cyclists has to be related to safety of pedestrians which are often in danger from cyclists.

# Question 4

What would you do to improve cycle parking in the city centre?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Excellent suggestions, I have used the park street cycle park and agree that another is needed. The busy part of town I find is where Next is and I wonder whether there might be space for more bike locks there.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

There is a great shortage of cycle parking both in the City Centre and elsewhere in Cambridge. The accessibility review being carried out by the City Council needs to look for further opportunities for cycle parking which would ensure that there is less for ad hoc cycle parking which can impede access for others.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

A lot has already been done. Where there continues to be a problem with cycles, more cycle rails should be provided. What has happened to the cycle parking at the station? This should be reinstated.

# Question 5

Recent construction in the city, such as on Abbey Street, Milton Road and at the University Arms have closed routes or removed cycle space. What would you do to ensure that cycle routes remain open and safe as construction grows the city?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Flag up early on in discussions with developers and architects that design needs to be thought about for cycle routes to be preserved - cyclists don't just go away because works are being carried out. It's a potentially a very dangerous scenario. Flag it up basically. Design a route, or a traffic flow system, albeit temporary, that brings cyclists into the equation.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

We make sure that developers, contractors and council officers keep cycle routes open and safe during construction periods or provide well signposted suitable alternatives.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

Cycle routes should be kept open when building is being done and construction firms should be made to make provision for this.

# Question 6

Cycle routes which are narrow and involves sharp turns and chicanes make routes difficult or impossible for users of tricycles, handcycles and cargo bikes, impairing accessibility for the most vulnerable. Can you think of anywhere in your ward that is difficult to use on a non-standard cycle and what will you do to improve it?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

I think the journey from Chesterton road up Victoria road, once you pass staples corner is perilous!!! I would avoid it if possible; it's so narrow. I've seen non standard cycles but they are braver than me. I would probably go up Carlyle road to avoid it, taking searle street, to the top of Victoria road.
The 20mph limit is so good, and where that is in place it does help to prepare cars to navigate overtaking the bikes with more care and patience.
Some signs on Victoria road might be useful- to highlight that care is required around cyclists at this place...could there be a world in which cyclists had right of way, in much the same way as pedestrians have right of way on midsummer common over the bikes, ie the most vulnerable group can rely on the faster group taking the care? And that being a right.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

The new provision to cycle contra flow in Trafalgar Street and Trafalgar Road does not offer an obvious route to turn right into Chesterton Road. This must be particularly difficult in these cases.
All routes need to be fully thought through including transition to the next provision of cycleway rather than short stretches which do not flow into th next.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

No suggestions, and no residents have commented.

# Question 7

How would you encourage people to cycle to the science and business parks and new train station along Milton Road?

Har Hari KAUR
(Green Party)

Very good ideas in the newsletter. As a cyclist and if I was elected I would like to go over them in more detail with you with a view to endorse them. I really hate those junctions like woodhead where you're not entirely sure who has right of way. It makes cycling very slow, and cycling on Milton road itself is much quicker, which is dangerous and not to be encouraged.

But meanwhile my bias would be to shift route as you mention in the newsletter, green end road, St. Andrews, riverside bridge, fort st George etc. It's a good point to get cyclists to build in time for their journey. This will make their day brighter and could even end up saving their lives.

Mary Elspeth KING
(UK Independence Party)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Mike SARGEANT
(Labour Party)

The City Deal project for improved bus priority on Milton Road needs to also ensure that there is a full cycleway on both sides of the road. The current dual use is patchy and I would prefer segregated cycle lanes while also meeting the other priorities including retaining the residential nature of the road.

Damien TUNNACLIFE
(Liberal Democrat)
The candidate has not responded to the survey.
Linda YEATMAN
(Conservative Party)

If elected I will encourage the formation of dedicated cycle lane on or beside all arterial roads in and out of Cambridge, including Milton Road.

[Additional comments at end of letter:]

I hope this is helpful. As a resident of Cambridge I am concerned about all traffic issues. Car drivers, cyclists, pedestrians, all need facilities that are safe for them to use. Cyclists often feel threatened by motor traffic, but cyclists must respect the rules of the road and not jump lights, barge out across incoming traffic, give clear signals and respect others. Also they should realise when they ride without lights in the dusk and dark that they put others in danger as well as themselves.

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.