Southampton Cycling Campaign Newsletter – Feb 2021
Welcome to the February 2021 newsletter. We hope you are all well and able to keep cycling.
The next Southampton Cycling Campaign meeting is also our AGM, on Zoom on Monday 8th March at 7:30pm.
We have scrapped all membership fees and now just suggest donations, so if you have a regular payment to us please feel free to leave it or alter it.
Do forward this newsletter to others who may be interested in joining, as we’d love to gain more members. If you’ve didn’t get this direct from us, see https://www.southamptoncyclingcampaign.org.uk/join-us to join our group.
We share articles on our Facebook page and use our mailing list to communicate about what’s going on in Southampton. If you’re not on our mailing list, do come along to a meeting and then join our list. (Members are able to join our secure email list once you have attended a meeting, or if that is an issue an active member can vouch for you.) The day before your first meeting, please email firstname.lastname@example.org to get the zoom link.
If you don’t want to hear from us again, please email asking to be removed from the list. On the other hand, if you’d like to get more involved, please come along to our next meeting or contact us! Thanks! email@example.com
Here we are at our Feb meeting:
Suggested “half term week” activity – a walk or cycle around the historic modal filters of Southampton.
To share the love of the historic Low Traffic Neighbourhoods in Southampton, an interactive map has been made so you can enjoy them too! https://umap.openstreetmap.fr/en/map/southampton-modal-filters_555749?fbclid=IwAR3rYHcRJUCG5GgrylIKX2BEQOSZFd1-vzQRdJ2kmwM9g85DuLl_4uKCTm0#15/50.9237/-1.4043
In orange are temporary ones currently on trial, so if you love them as much as us, please offer feedback and respond to the consultations (the links can be found by clicking on the orange icons). You’ll also find dotted lines offering you route suggestions for walks and cycles. We’d love your support and to see pictures of your favourite Low Traffic Neighbourhoods spots, so please do tag us and use the hashtags #sotonsafestreets #historicactivetravel #LTN #LowTrafficNeighbourhood #Southampton #activetravel
It’s the pinned post on our fb so please share www.facebook.com/SotonCycling
Enjoy and stay safe!
Southampton’s Green Transport Recovery Plan
Please continue to give your councillors positive feedback on the changes in the Green Transport Recovery Plan: Find your councillor
Lots of info here: https://transport.southampton.gov.uk/
Videos of routes/schemes are at The Cycleways of Southampton
We think it is important to promote and cement grounds for improvements to routes that are well used by members and other cyclists. Many of these may not follow, or only partly follow, the SCN routes. So if you have routes that fit the bill you can have your routes added to our library by following the instructions at www.southamptoncyclingcampaign.org.uk/suggested-routes/ Please list key districts & road names in the description, and don’t start or finish routes at your home for security reasons. You can also search to access the routes for use and download as a GPX file or a PDF.
How do we communicate with SCC?
We have working groups, where the leader communicates with the SCC person who is coordinating the scheme/route. After each monthly meeting we send a list of queries to Greg at SCC (Senior Transport Planner, Green City and Infrastructure). In Dec we had 7 points to make, and Greg replied within 9 days with answers to all the points. For example, part of one points was our suggestion that a proper crossing should be put in, and the response was that “we have secured some of the funding towards a push button facility on the northern arm of Avenue / Bannister / Lodge junction”. Great news!
We have just submitted a list of our suggestions for Greg’s “small pot of money” for the next financial year. He is now separating it into: (1) Quick wins – let’s get straight to delivery; (2) Good ideas but need a bit of thought / design or consultation; (3) Being delivered as part of TCF or other scheme; (4) Not minor works / needs bigger budget / not deliverable because… He says, “Once I have finished I’ll share with you my initial thoughts and feel free to push back if you think I’ve sold an idea short.” The draft list is in Jan 2021 minutes at: https://www.southamptoncyclingcampaign.org.uk/document-archive/meeting-minutes/
We looked at our last 2 lists we’d given SCC and it is great how many of our suggestions are already in place!
Articles on specific schemes/areas:
1 Bevois Valley Cycle provision
We now have a new shared-use path in Bevois Valley which is great for cyclists from Portswood and Bevois Valley itself. A good width and lovely smooth surface. Unfortunately, for cyclists using this route to access the city centre from St Denys and Bitterne Park, there is no easy way to get onto the path from Kingsbury Road. This problem was raised with the transport planners and the suggestion was that cyclists should double back and use the toucan crossing outside Aldi to access the path. Unfortunately, as this means dismounting to walk the length of Aldi frontage and waiting for the crossing lights to change, few cyclists will do this. By Lindsi Bluemel
2 Bus Lane on Bitterne Road West
Although intermittent, the bus lane on Northam Bridge and Bitterne Road West has made cycling along Bitterne Road West less unpleasant than formerly, as cyclists are not forced to cycle right behind motor vehicles and breathe their toxic emissions. The real benefit is during rush hour when cyclists can whizz by stationary vehicles with a whole lane to themselves. I have discovered that cycling along the centre of this lane (moving back towards the kerb for buses) effectively prevents its use by rogue vehicles ignoring the bus lane signage (of which there are many). By Lindsi Bluemel
3 Bullar Road/Athlestan Road crossroads
Most of you know how difficult this junction is for pedestrians and may have seen the you-tube video made by a parent of Bitterne Manor School spending over seven minutes getting across, or taken part in the protest organised by Lyn (in November 2018). https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZ592h4Qo6A&t=104s
I have continued campaigning for improvements at this junction and a short time ago received the following letter from Balfour Beattie (BB) informing me that changes had been made:
Thank you for your letter regarding Bullar Road/Athlestan Road. We have already made some adjustments to this junction; this includes the overall cycle time has been decreased to 100 seconds, and we have made the pedestrian phase run in every cycle. Pedestrians are automatically demanded at all crossing points at this junction. The reduction in cycle time may lead to large scale queuing on all arms which may lead to further issues.
By no means perfect, but an improvement on the previous situation. I have thanked BB and informed them that no additional queuing has been observed. By Lindsi Bluemel
4 Millbrook Station Footbridge
We lobbied unsuccessfully to retain this link from Foundry Lane, route SCN 8 to SCN1/NCN 236, Western approach, on the south side of Millbrook Road West.
Last time we were there, after the south side ramp had been removed by National Rail there were no alternative route signs. The two shortest alternative routes are less safe and considerably longer.
Cutting off access to the southern side of the railway at this point prevents cyclists using it for what could have been the safest route to destinations south of the Central Station. This is important as there is still no safe cycle route over Central Station Bridge.
This is a loss of an historic route once marked on the A to Z of Southampton as a cycle route and marked on an old map as a public footpath.
We hope this will not turn out to be a repetition of what happened 700m further west where the next footbridge was fenced off and the path to it from Millbrook Station south of the railway is no longer accessible to the public. By Pete and Tina Davis
5 Missing Section of Cycle Facility on Bassett Avenue
We are pleased to hear that engineers are due to consider the problem of there being no cycle facility northbound on Bassett Avenue between Little Oak Road and Holly Hill later this year. We hope that no accidents occur whilst waiting for a solution to be found. At present many cyclists travelling in both directions continue to use this pavement, recently narrowed on the bend by the memorial railings, believing it to be shared use. By Pete and Tina Davis
Thank you for reading, and hope you can join us soon!