Co-ordinator’s Comment

This article was published in 2008, in Newsletter 80.

Cycling Demonstration Town status

The award of Cycling Demonstration Town status for Cambridge, by the government’s cycling body, Cycling England, is arguably the best news we’ve had for quite some time. As well as the promise of new money, it offers for the first time a much greater emphasis on quality of provision as a key condition of the money.

At long last bike racks have been reinstated on St Andrews Street (and not the previous silly curly ones that didn’t support the bikes). New racks are also expected on the wide pavement on Downing Street outside John Lewis near the St Andrews Street junction.
Image as described adjacent

Cambridge Cycling Campaign has established itself as a key stakeholder in this process, and it is clear that publications such as our recent Cycling 2020 vision document have helped improve further the professional image of the Campaign. And several of the proposals we made only six months ago are being accepted as core parts of the CDT programme, for instance a trial of the hybrid cycle lane concept, cycle parking improvements, a ‘hit squad’ to fix niggles, and many other areas of innovation and improvement.

Having recently attended the initial meeting with the County Council, Cycling England, and others, we are optimistic about the prospects for improvements over the coming three years. It was great to have so many senior County Council officers and several key Councillors at the Cycling Demonstration Town meeting. We look forward to working productively with these other groups in order to see that the agenda for quality that we are all so keen to see is turned into reality.

David Earl outlines the recent developments later in this issue.

Congestion charge quagmire

The congestion charge proposals are definitely not dead – nor is the prospect of the £500m of investment that would accompany such a charge – but they have certainly suffered a setback, or, if you prefer, a delay.

The summer has seen a series of twists and turns, as set out in this Newsletter.

The awarding to Cambridge of Cycling Demonstration Town status has, to my mind, given a clearer idea of what kind of things could be achievable if money on this scale was available, and the right mindset employed.

We will be taking an active part in the proceedings of the proposed new Transport Commission, arguing for demand management and investment in cycling.

Charitable status

In this issue we announce proposals for charitable status, to be considered at the AGM. The proposed set of changes mark a very exciting development which signify a greater maturity in the life of the organisation.

I very much hope that as many members as possible will attend our Annual General Meeting (see the article in this Newsletter) to discuss, and potentially give support to, the Committee’s recommendations.

Also, please do come to our monthly meeting in October, where an initial discussion will take place.

If you have any comments – positive or negative – on the broad thrust of the proposal, please do not hesitate to get in contact so that we can discuss them.

Martin Lucas-Smith, Co-ordinator