This article was published in 2021, in Magazine 151.
Zero Carbon Streets aims to build on growing regional support and get more people cycling
Camcycle has always worked with other local groups on its campaigns, but began to expand our collaboration last year as we called for Spaces to Breathe across Cambridgeshire.
Our new campaign Zero Carbon Streets, launched on Earth Day, aims to continue this joint approach. We want to encourage communities across the county to work together for a green recovery from Covid-19 and to play our part in reducing carbon emissions. Emissions are higher per person in our region than the UK average and 44% come from surface transport (road and rail).
Our first step towards Zero Carbon Streets is to raise at least £20,000 for a new infrastructure campaigner to lead the project and help local people turn ideas for active travel improvements into changes that will make a difference. This would help more people to switch some of their everyday car journeys to more sustainable modes of travel. We know there is a demand for this role as we’ve already been working closely with many groups such as Milton Cycling Campaign and Hunts Walking & Cycling group. Organisations such as St Ives Eco Action also want more support with projects to increase the number of people cycling in their area.
We’re delighted to be halfway to our goal thank to 85 generous donors who supported the campaign via the Big Give Green Match Fund and together raised over £10,000.
We’re now preparing for our 2021 Christmas Challenge match-funding campaign through which we will continue fundraising for Zero Carbon Streets. To help build our pot of match funds, we’re looking for a number of ‘pledgers’ who can give a donation over £500. If you can support our work in this way, please get in touch before 25 August 2021.
We need help to spread the word about Zero Carbon Streets and link up with other local groups. Find out more at camcycle.org.uk/zerocarbonstreets
Be a Big Give pledger
Could you donate over £500 and help us prepare for the Christmas Challenge? Please get in touch.
Free school meals delivered by cycle
We’re incredibly proud of the Camcycle volunteers who continue to support a range of local organisations with cycle delivery during the pandemic. This picture shows Alan Ackroyd delivering Easter holiday meals to schoolchildren across Cambridge on behalf of Cambridge Sustainable Food.
We frequently receive requests for delivery volunteers from charities such as Abbey People, Cambridge Online and FoodCycle – if you have some time to spare, why not get involved?
Cycle thieves look out! Mass bike registration campaign aims to help public ‘Save Our Cycles’
There were 3,119 reported bike thefts in Cambridgeshire in 2020 and this is likely to be the tip of the iceberg: a 2016 study by Stolen-bikes.co.uk suggested that as many as 71% of thefts go unreported. There is no easy solution but Camcycle’s staff and volunteers make regular representations to the police, councillors, council officers, site managers, developers and other stakeholders to get action on cycle theft, enforcement and cycle parking facilities.
However, from our work with the police and the ‘Stolen Bikes in Cambridge’ facebook group, it’s clear that without a frame number, victims of cycle theft are unlikely to recover their bikes. Poor quality of locks and locking techniques also make cycles more vulnerable to theft. Camcycle has teamed up with the Cambridge cycle theft taskforce, bike shops and local businesses to launch ‘Save Our Cycles’, a new campaign to help the public protect their property. We want to encourage everyone to ‘lock it and log it’ and hope to spark a mass registration campaign with as many people as possible logging their frame numbers on bikeregister.com.
From telling your friends to putting up a poster at your workplace, please get involved! After the first focus of Bike Week (30 May – 5 June), we’ll be running this campaign throughout the year with another big push during Freshers’ Week. Help the public take action and together beat the bike thieves!
Make sure you ‘lock it and log it’
Lock the frame and both wheels to a secure stand: using two strong D-locks is ideal with at least one securing the frame. Register your frame number and cycle details at bikeregister.com
Find out more about keeping your cycle safe at camcycle.org.uk/cycletheft
Spread the word with the Save Our Cycles resources
Share the ‘lock it and log it’ message with friends, family and colleagues. You can find digital versions of our poster and leaflet online, along with social media graphics, logos and photos. Let us know if you could help distribute and display printed materials and help share the posts we put out on Camcycle’s social media channels.
Download Save Our Cycles resources at camcycle.org.uk/saveourcycles
Support this campaign in other ways
Help update our cycle parking guide
As part of our cycle theft project, we are also updating our cycle parking guide (last revised in September 2008). We want to improve the clarity of the guide so that it is accessible for anyone who wants to know more about cycle parking and how to go about having it installed.
The new guide will set out the key principles of cycle parking – it should be convenient, accessible, safe and secure, attractive and well-maintained – and encourage readers to think about the different types of rider and cycle that will be using cycle parking facilities.
We welcome volunteers who would like to get involved in this project and are particularly seeking good photos of high-quality cycle parking. Do you have some good stands near you? What should we make sure we include?
Although increasing numbers of Camcycle members and supporters are being vaccinated, the charity is remaining cautious in its return to in-person events. The Cambridge Festival of Cycling is postponed until 2022 and we will continue monthly meetings online until we are confident about returning to indoor gatherings. We hope to start taking our stall bike to a few summer events outdoors; watch out for details at camcycle.org.uk/events