Category Archives: Uncategorized

2017 Election Hustings

In case you’ve missed there’s a General Election on 8 June!  This is your chance to interview the candidates.

parliament-palace

We have arranged an election hustings meeting on Thursday 25 May.  We’ve invited all parties standing in Portsmouth North and South constituencies to attend to give a brief presentation on their parties’ policies on cycling and active travel and their personal aims to promote these should they be elected.

There will a chance to ask questions of the candidates so have some thoughtful and original questions ready!

The meeting will take place on Thursday 25 May at 7.00pm in Lecture Theatre 2 of the Richmond Building of the University of Portsmouth.

We need to make full use of the time available so please arrive for 6.45 to find a seat. Start time is 7.00pm for 2 hours.

If you are not already a member, please join us: follow this link to pay your £10 subscription.

 

Portsmouth Cycle Forum Open Meeting 27 April – POSTPONEMENT

Portsmouth Cycle Forum Open Meeting POSTPONEMENT

Apologies for the short notice. Due to the general election announcement our speaker for the meeting on Thursday 27 April has had to withdraw. We have tried to find a replacement but this was not possible in time.

However, because of the election we plan to hold a meeting in late May for party candidates to give their positions on cycling. We’ll send out a confirmation of this in the next couple of weeks.

Portsmouth Cycle Forum AGM

On the 16th March we will be holding our AGM. This meeting is only open to members, however you may join or renew on the door. The cost is a bargain £10 for the whole year. You can also join on the website here.

Once the business of officers reports and electing the new committee is over, we are intending to use the local knowledge of the members present  to create a new ‘tube map’ of Portsea’s cycle infrastructure. For background reading on ‘tube maps’ please see this article on the Cycling UK website.

Once complete, we intend to present this to Portsmouth City Council to give them some ideas on prioritising updates to the network.

One of the key purposes of the AGM is to elect a committee to govern the cycle forum’s activities. We’d love to see some new faces on our committee this year to energise our campaigning.

The following committee posts will be up for election – you can put yourself forward for one of them either by letting us know in advance by email (you can reply to this one) or by coming along and volunteering on the night.

  • Chair – the chair provides leadership to ensure the committee functions effectively.
  • Vice Chair – the vice chair supports the chair, and is an ideal role for an aspiring chair!
  • Hon Secretary – the honorary secretary is responsible for the smooth running of the forum – making sure that meetings are planned and delivered effectively. This is not an admin job – it’s about making sure the forum’s operations keep running smoothly.
  • Treasurer – keeps us solvent.
  • Membership Secretary – recruiting and keeping track of members.
  • Communications Manager – managing our communications our members and supporters via email, web, social media and media.
  • Rides and Events Manager – manage our programme of rides and our attendance at events / fayre’s and so on.
  • Committee member (up to 6) – an ‘ordinary’ (although no-one’s ordinary) member of our committee, helping to decide how the forum runs and taking a share of the actions to deliver its business.

As well as the standard business of the AGM we discuss how the cycle forum is run and the focus of our campaigns. This is YOUR chance to have a say in how the forum is run.

The meeting will take place on Thursday 16th March at 7.00pm in Lecture Theatre 2 of the Richmond Building of the University of Portsmouth.

Boxing Day Bike Ride

After all the bingeing on turkey and telly, what better excuse for getting away from the family for a few hours! We take the scenic route around Portsea Island, staying as close to the water line as we can. Meet in Guildhall Square, 10.30 on Monday 26 Dec. If there are any cafes/snack bars open, we’ll pop in for a bite/drink. Some rough surfaces, but fine for most bikes.boxing day
Read more at https://www.goskyride.com/Search/Details?eventid=90048#uGSewMWbXCuVEsOQ.99

October 2016 – what a month!

Our interim Chair, Ian Saunders writes: as October comes to a close, it’s been quite a month for the cyclist in Portsmouth.

On the positive side of the equation we had a successful Pedal Portsmouth Glow ride last weekend on the closed roads along the seafront while the Great South Run was using the space. The Petersfield to Queen Elizabeth Country Park cycle track has finally been completed, and Ned Boulting’s one man show ‘Bikeology’ came to the New Theatre Royal to discover his thoughts on cycling culture and cyclists and experiences of the Tour De France over the last 15 years he has worked on it.

There has also been some new infrastructure ‘installed’ along the east bound Havant Road, although depending on who you speak to and their previous experiences, the addition of paint is either a positive or a negative in terms of giving space and creating awareness of cycling. And that’s just the cyclists!

However it is all overshadowed by the release of the cycling casualty figures for the UK, and Portsmouth’s place at the top of table of the worst cities to for cycle safety. Jon Spencer has outlined the salient points on our website here and although the figure of 888 per million of population is down from 2014, it is not coming down fast enough. Therefore we are now writing all PCC councilors and the city’s MPs to get them to commit to halving the accident rate by 2020 as was outlined in our City to Share strategy presented to them two years ago.

Amongst the recent news stories about cycle casualties, traffic congestion, and new infrastructure being planned and installed, we’ve seen comments from the Council Leader and her head of Traffic and transport, but not the cabinet post holder for the department. Six months into his tenure, we are yet to hear publically of Councillor Fleming’s plans on how to combat congestion and pollution in the city, other than increasing the fees for the third parking permit at an address.

A good place to start might be our next Open Meeting on Thursday 17th November, and he would also be able to hear Cycling UK’s Campaigns and Policy Director Roger Geffen MBE talk about the second phase of their national Space for Cycling Campaign which will call on councils to commit to planning high-quality cycle networks, and to finding the funding these will require. Perhaps then we can start to reduce the unnecessary accidents on our roads.

And related to that final point, the clocks go back this weekend (October 29th), so the mornings and evenings will be darker and he days will (probably) be duller and greyer as we arrive in winter. Please ensure that you use your lights while cycling and ensure you are seen.

Ride Round Gosport

Only minutes away on the ferry, but you can find some lovely quiet lanes and great views across the harbour.  Flat, mostly quiet roads and cycle tracks.  Meet 10am at Gosport ferry, The Hard.  Ferry with bike £4.60 return.  We will have a couple of stops – including a cafe stop – bring snacks and drinks to keep you going!
Gosport ferry 2

Solent Deal – an environmentalist’s perspective

At the invitation of Clare Seek (Portsmouth Green Drinks coordinator), John Holland attended a meeting organised by environmental campaigners in Southampton with the purpose of getting more info on the Solent Deal and to discuss the implications for this on the environment, and talk about how they might like to respond to the consultation from that perspective.

Simon Letts (leader of Southampton City Council) gave a the history on devolution of power in the UK, and then some background into how we have arrived with current proposals to devolve certain powers from central Government to the combined authority encompassing Portsmouth, Southampton and the Isle of Wight.

It would seem that, despite the mask of negotiation and public consultation, the Solent authorities will be offered an “off the peg” deal – much the same as is being offered to other applicants.
Hampshire County Council is not a partner to the deal; instead they are promoting an alternative structure. The non-unitary authorities (Havant, Fareham, Eastleigh, East Hants) are not partners either at this time since they are not eligible to join (yet).

On transport there is enthusiasm to introduce London-style bus franchising to reintroduce some kind of coordination between the bus operators plus the building of a Light Rapid Transit network linking the key centres. Cycling, walking and cycling, alas, receive very little (if any) focus.

The authorities have a very strong focus on economic growth and we feel this sells our region short. For example there is no mention of having a happy healthy people, along with clean soil, water and air. The Local Enterprise Partnership has a seat at the decision table, and that is a pretty undemocratic body. And a small point is that the document doesn’t allow for anyway in which the mayor can be removed during their 4 year term, which seems to be a strange omission.

Seafront Cycleway Survey

 

A message from one of our members:

I am an MSc student at the University of Portsmouth.  I would be grateful if you could take the time to complete this survey which is part of my dissertation.  The aim is to find out how effective the seafront cycleway east of South Parade Pier is in encouraging cycling, and how it would affect users if it was not there.

The survey should not take more than 10 minutes.  I would be grateful if you could pass it on to anyone else who might be interested.

Thanks, Roger Inkpen

https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSesCOdeWo_W6hOrLzGKyKCG-fS_y-Z_gAX1Cp3IHfCnP5CTbA/viewform

AGM 2016 Brainstorming exercise

After the formal business of our AGM we had a brainstorming exercise to get ideas on how Portsmouth City Council could implement the City to Share.  This covered the topics of Equality, Leisure, Planning, Safety and Transport.  Here are the scans of everyone’s ideas:

C2S Equality1 C2S Leisure1  C2S Leisure2 C2S Leisure3 C2S Planning1 C2S Planning2 C2S Safety1 C2S Safety2 C2S Safety3 C2S Transport2 C2S Transport1

April Meetings

We have not one but two important meetings coming up in April – our AGM and our Election Meeting.

Annual General Meeting

We will be holding our annual general meeting at 7pm on Thursday 21st April in the Community Room at the new Tesco Extra store on Fratton Way . The community room is to the right as you get to the upper level, behind the checkouts.

The AGM is open to paid up members only and is a chance for our members to elect a committee and have their say on how the cycle forum is run and how it focuses its campaigns. If you’d like to come alone but are not yet a member then you can join online now.

Please use this form to tell us you’d like to come to the AGM.

We’re really keen to get some new faces on to our committee – if you’d like to get involved or want to know more PLEASE get in touch.

The following committee posts will be up for election – you can put yourself forward for one of them either by letting us know in advance by email (you can reply to this one) or by coming along and volunteering on the night.

  • Chair – the chair provides leadership to ensure the committee functions effectively.
  • Vice Chair – the vice chair supports the chair, and is an ideal role for an aspiring chair!
  • Hon Secretary – the honorary secretary is responsible for the smooth running of the forum – making sure that meetings are planned and delivered effectively. This is not an admin job – it’s about making sure the forum’s operations keep running smoothly.
  • Treasurer – keeps us solvent.
  • Membership Secretary – recruiting and keeping track of members.
  • Communications Manager – managing our communications our members and supporters via email, web, social media and media.
  • Rides and Events Manager – manage our programme of rides and our attendance at events / fayre’s and so on.
  • Committee member (up to 6) – an ‘ordinary’ (although no-one’s ordinary) member of our committee, helping to decide how the forum runs and taking a share of the actions to deliver its business.

As well as the standard business of the AGM we discuss how the cycle forum is run and the focus of our campaigns. This is YOUR chance to have a say in how the forum is run.

Please use this form to tell us you’d like to come to the AGM.

Election Meeting

Election time is nearing, with a councillor up for election in each of the 14 wards across the city on the 5th May. We’ve invited the representatives of each party to speak at our next meeting and we’ll be asking them to commit to halving the rate of cycling casualties on Portsmouth’s Roads by 2020. We’ll be inviting every candidate in the election to come along too and we’ll be writing to them individually to ask them for their support.

The main focus of the meeting will be to give you a chance to ask questions of our politicians about their plans and views on cycling.

The meeting will take place in Lecture Theatre 3, Richmond Building of the University of Portsmouth at 7pm on the 28th April.

Please let us know if you are planning on coming to this meeting by booking a place here. The meeting is free and open to all but it is REALLY helpful for us to know how many people are coming.

Click here to attend this meeting

Happy Christmas

On behalf of Portsmouth Cycle Forum I’d like to wish all our members and supporters a very happy christmas and may 2016 bring health and happiness to you all.

I’d like to thank you all for your support in 2015 and hope you will continue to support us in 2016. As you know Portsmouth Cycle Forum depends on its members to keep campaigning and we are extremely grateful to all who have joined this year. If you’d like to join then you can do so here on our website.

Our first open meeting of 2016 will be on Thursday 11th February at 7pm so keep the date free. Full details of the meeting will come out in the new year but we are working on a great line up of speakers to follow up the last meeting – our most successful ever.

Near Miss Project needs you!

The Near Miss Project is back for its second year and it needs your help. The project, led by Dr. Rachel Aldred at the University of Westminster, studies cycling incidents that don’t result in injuries, but may profoundly influence people’s experiences and behaviours or even give an indication of where future collisions may happen.

The findings could be used by planners and policy-makers; to inform street design, for example. The team will also use the data to engage the public in an informed debate and help all road users better understand how a minor incident might affect a person cycling.

To take part, just pick a day between 19 October and 1 November when you’ll be cycling, sign up online and record your experience here or visit nearmiss.bike for more details and last year’s findings.

Pedal Portsmouth Report

At the Start
At the Start

Portsmouth City Council staged the inaugural Pedal Portsmouth Event today. Portsmouth Cycle Forum has been delighted to support Cllr Donna Jones in developing and launching this closed-road event. 

The event was wonderful and Portsmouth City Council must be congratulated on it. Cllr Donna Jones made the event possible and the team at PCC delivered a great event on a shoestring budget. The result was a real joy. Early estimates suggest around 3000 riders enjoyed the peace of a traffic-free seafront. In the words of one rider: “…it made you feel glad to be alive…! Roll on next year’s…!!”. We are looking forward to working with Portsmouth City Council to keep developing and promoting this event for years to come.

We now hope that Portsmouth City Council is able to look at ways of improving cycling on the other 364 days in the year. It’s sad to announce that figures released by the Department for Transport last Thursday show that once again Portsmouth is the most dangerous place in the country to ride a bike except for a few London boroughs. The number of cycle casualties increased from 906 per million in 2013 to 942 per million in 2014. The 2013 figure itself was an increase on the 2012 figure of 832 per million. The trend is depressingly upward.

Portsmouth City Council must capitalise on the success of this event and take positive action to tackle this horrifying number of cycle casualties. We would like the City Council to commit straight away to developing a comprehensive Cycle Safety Action Plan – the first step on the path outlined in ‘A City to Share’.

We would love to work with Portsmouth City Council to develop a cycle-friendly transport system fit for the 21st century. A City to Share has been recognised at the National Cycle Planning awards as one of the best in the country and the city can exploit that to win government funding. Portsmouth Cycle Forum is already working with Flick Drummond MP to do exactly that – we hope Portsmouth City Council will fully support us.

Thankyou PCC for a great day out, let’s build on it and create a better future for Portsmouth.

Open Meeting – Seafront Cycling

Southsea Seafront
Southsea Seafront

Our next open meeting will take place at 7pm on Thursday 11th June at the John Pounds Centre on Queen Street. We will be joined by East Solent Coastal Partnership to explain the work to replace the flood defences around Portsea Island.  We think it is vital that any replacement should provide greater access for walkers and cyclists.

We’ll be focussing on Southsea Seafront as the replacement of the sea defences has long been touted as the opportunity to finally get a cycle lane in place along the whole length. Come along to have your say about how you think that should be done.

We need your input for a louder voice or we could end up with them replacing like-for-like – and we’d end up missing the once-in-a-generation opportunity to solve the problem of cycling on the prom.

Treasurer’s Report and Accounts 2014-15

Introduction

These are the accounts for Portsmouth Cycle Forum, financial year ending 28 February 2015.

Portsmouth Cycle Forum Accounts

Income: Our regular income relies solely on subscriptions from paid-up members, with occasional one-off donations.

Members: Thanks to a much higher profile Facebook page, regular newsletters and media publicity, our paid membership grew from 36 to 66.

Costs: We try to keep our costs to a minimum, and we are grateful to the University of Portsmouth and the Southsea Coffee Co for free use of their facilities. On other occasions, such as this one, we have to pay for hall hire. Even with the free venues, hall hire is one of our greatest expenses. The City2Share strategy document was our single largest expense, although this was mostly covered by a crowd-funding appeal. We also have costs for printing posters and running the website. This means we have broken even this year, after two years of deficits.

Subscriptions: Subscriptions have not changed from £5 since we started, but with increased costs the committee agreed to raise the subs to £10 per year. Renewals can be made by cheque, cash or through Paypal via the Pompeybug website.

Income

Subs/donations 651.20
Paypal income (net) 12.67

Total Income 663.87

Expenditure

Printing 327.83
Website 45.94
Hall hire 90.00
Subscriptions to CTC/CN 140.00
Travel (speaker) 45.00
Sundries 11.00

Total Expenditure 659.77

2014-15 surplus £4.10

Assets
Bank 193
Paypal 73

Current Assets £266 (from £262 in March 2014)

Roger Inkpen
Treasurer, Portsmouth Cycle Forum 12 March 2015

Female Cycling Champions needed for Portsmouth

Breeze Women's CyclingIn a bid to get more women cycling Portsmouth City Council has teamed up with British Cycling to recruit new volunteers to lead ladies-only rides.

Breeze is British Cycling’s biggest ever programme to get more women riding bikes for fun. Led by women for women, it relies on a hugely important group of volunteer champions to bring the programme to life.

The Council and British Cycling are looking for women from the Portsmouth area that will bring out the exciting, friendly and sociable elements of local bike rides. There is no need to be a cycling expert, just confident on a bike with heaps of enthusiasm!

The free one day course will be held at the Mountbatten Leisure Centre on 11 April 2015.

Find out more and book your place here.

Merry Christmas Everyone

Merry Christmas

A very merry Christmas to one and all from all of us at Portsmouth Cycle Forum. 2014 has been a very successful year for Portsmouth Cycle Forum and I’d like to thank you for the part you’ve played in that. We began the year with a visit from Bristol Cycle Campaign who told us about the cycling strategy they’d developed for their city, and we finished the year by doing the same. The launch of our cycling strategy ‘A City to Share‘ was more successful than we dared hope and more than justified the huge effort put in to it by a dedicated team of volunteers.

In 2014 we were able to bring cycle safety to the forefront of political debate, making it front page news in the paper. This led to a 10 minute documentary piece on the BBC’s ‘Inside Out’ current affairs programme.

We’ve really been delighted with the positive engagement we’ve had with Councillors and Officers this year. We’re really looking forward to working hard with them to build on the great work we’ve done this year to bring some really positive changes to the city’s roads in 2015.

However, we are an entirely voluntary organisation funded solely by our members so none of this would have been possible without your support. The positive engagements from you and the constructive debates at our open meetings have been central to the progress we’ve made with the city council. Thanks to you all, have a great christmas and very best wishes for a happy and healthy 2015.

Cycle Access to Milton Rd and Velder Avenue Junction Restored

Cycle Activated Signal at Milton & Velder
Cycle Activated Signal at Milton & Velder

A cycle activated traffic light has been installed at the junction of Milton Rd / Velder Avenue.  Located on the corner of Milton Rd and Alverstone Rd it automatically detects waiting cyclists and will stop all traffic in the junction to allow cyclists to safely navigate the junction to any of the four exits – Milton Rd North & South, Velder Avenue and Rodney Rd.  We have been testing the light and it works well – it’s fast too, we’ve never had to wait more than a minute.  This light allows cyclists to approach this busy junction from the quiet streets and lanes around Fratton Park and to get across it quickly and safely.

When Portsmouth City Council carried out works on the busy Milton Rd / Velder Ave junction back in 2012 it closed off access to the junction from Alverstone Rd.  This forced cyclists to either take their chances on Milton Rd or endure a tedious chain of up to 3 toucan crossings to get where they needed to go.  We have been pushing PCC to fix this ever since and this is the result. This light – which we think is pretty neat thinking by PCC – has restored access to the junction for cyclists and has been implemented using money left in the budget from the original junction works.  So the taxpayer has had no extra costs to foot.

The only issue with the light is that it is 2 metres up – meaning cyclists need to crane their necks to see it. That’s down to DfT regulations. With luck and a following wind low level cycle specific signals should be approved in the next year and PCC will be allowed to install a signal head at cyclist eye level.

To use the light a cyclist just needs to ride up to the stop line and wait for the green cyclist light to appear.

Good work PCC!

UPDATED: Open Meeting

Wheels 4 All
Wheels 4 All

Our next public meeting will take place on Thursday 11th September at 7pm. The venue is Southsea Coffee Co at 63 Osborne Rd in Southsea (map).

We’ll be hearing about Wheels 4 All, a nationally recognised programme that embraces all children and adults with disabilities and differing needs, to engage in a quality cycling activity. By using specially adapted cycles, the activities are both physically and mentally stimulating and above all fun for everyone involved.

We’ll also be presenting our research on the junctions in Portsmouth that are most lethal to cyclists. This follows our exposure of the shocking cycle casualty statistics for Portsmouth and PCC’s response to them at our last meeting.

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