News

Cycling news from Bristol and beyond

Future Temple Quarter – will there be lots of cycling?

Yes, Temple Meads station is at the centre, but Temple Quarter includes the whole surrounding area all the way to the St Philips Causeway. This is going to be a huge development, with or without the semi-mythical Bristol Arena. The Temple Quarter partnership have launched a survey to gather views before the next stage. As they say “Whether it’s how you access and use the station, provision of green and public space, affordable housing, jobs and employment, or something else entirely, we want to know what’s important for you to see in the area.” We hope to get a…

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New council site to propose or support a street improvement

It’s good to see a new tool from Bristol Council for proposing street improvements for cycling (and other modes). This is similar to the innovative Bristol Bugbears site which was only open from April to October 2016. The site appears to have been preloaded with ‘pre 2018’ issues, probably from the ‘Tracker’ section of the Traffic Choices website. That however remains a very useful site with examples and costs of the kinds of measures that can be used. The site is focussed on specific issues rather than routes or area improvements. For that we still consider our…

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WECA Joint Local Transport Plan Consultation

So we know our new West of England Combined Authority (WECA), and our new metro Mayor, Conservative Tim Bowles, will soon be celebrating being two years old. What are they for? Well they currently have a Consultation on a plan for transport (called the JLTP) throughout the region up to 2036. Wow an opportunity to make our streets safe and healthy for people and kids. Reduce motor dependency, clean up air quality and create green space; well may be not. The author of the JLTP probably spent their childhood playing Grand Theft Auto in a dark place, not messing…

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Safe Cycling in NW Bristol ? Yes please

Want to cycle from Clifton to Henbury along a safe segregated cycle route? No we’re not joking; we don’t mean messy, sub standard national cycle route 4 but a new route along Westbury Rd, Falcondale Rd and Passage Rd, protected from motors. There is currently a consultation on new bus lanes on the A4018, which don’t seem popular locally. It’s not ambitious on cycling either; a new route on the Downs and, perhaps, traffic reduction in Westbury Village. Our meetings with Council Officers suggest, however, they’re seriously interested in a AAA (all ages and abilities) cycle route so may be…

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The results are in – Build it and they will come

Bristol Cycling Campaign has received data from Bristol City Council’s traffic counts on city centre roads where new segregated infrastructure has been built. We advocate protected, segregated cycle tracks as the best way to enable people of all ages and abilities to travel by bike and the results of the counts show it has been enormously successful so far. Baldwin Street The segregated cycle track on Baldwin Street in the Old City area of the city centre was built in two stages between 2015-2018 and the number of cycle movements increased from 893 (for a weekday…

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One-day cycle maintenance for ‘Improvers’, Saturday 2 March, Horfield

Maybe you know a bit but want to know more? Not sure you’re doing things the ‘textbook’ way? Learn to fix brakes and gears, and keep your bike in peak condition, supporting a local charity at the same time. Life Cycle’s one-day bike maintenance courses are ’empowering, fascinating and fun’. You’ll be working with a qualified cycle mechanic in our professional bike workshop, using brand new tools and work stands. The class sizes are small (maximum six) and courses are taught methodically with plenty of time to practise. By the end of the day you’ll have…

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Update: City Centre Cycle Network

Bristol Cycling (BCyc) have recently been engaging with Bristol City Council (BCC) officers about the city centre cycle network. A lot has happened in the last few years so now is a good time for an update on some recent and upcoming schemes: The Prince Street cycle track has been fully open for a few months, is very well used and is functioning pretty well. BCyc raised a few queries about some elements of the design and we hope that action will be taken on these where possible as well as lessons learned for future schemes. Minor snags aside, overall…

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6 reasons to make cycling to work your New Year’s resolution

Cycling rates are increasing year on year in Bristol. However, the motor car is still the dominant transport mode for commuting in the UK. So why not make your New Year’s resolution to leave the car at home and get on your bike to and from the office. Here are 6 good reasons why it makes sense:

Weight loss. Potentially the most common resolution, but how many people actually stick out the tedium of the gym? A comprehensive study carried out by the University of East Anglia found that switching from a car to walking, cycling, or public transport was associated with a statistically significant average weight loss of around 1 kg a person, on average. The longer the commute, the stronger was the association, with a weight loss of around 2 kg associated with journeys of more than 10 minutes, and 7 kg associated with journeys of more than 30 minutes [1]. And, whilst an electric bike (e-bike) won’t give you the same workout as a purely pedal powered bicycle, studies found weight loss amongst non-cyclists to be greater when they used an e-bike over a normal bike [2]. E-bikes still require more movement for passengers than being completely stationary in a motor vehicle, yet they help overcome perceived barriers to cycling, such as hills, distance to destination and worry about arriving sweaty. Cycle commuting is also associated with a lower risk of Cardiovascular Disease, cancer, and generally mortality [3].
Work Less. The average UK worker earns £27,200 annually [4]. It is estimated that owning a car costs on average £5,814 a year [5]. That’s 21% of an average annual salary or 1 hour 43 minutes of every typical 8 hour day spent on owning a car. Commuting by bicycle is estimated to cost £275 per year [6], which, by the same calculation equates to 5 minutes of every working day. Add to this the improvements in concentration and associated performance [18] and forget about having to work overtime.
Breath Cleaner Air. It is estimated that if the UK hit its walking and cycling targets over 13,000 lives would be saved every year [7]. But whilst it is obvious that bicycles emit fewer emissions than cars, it’s less well known that cyclists are exposed to far less pollution in cities than car drivers [8].
More free time. Average journey speeds in cities at rush hour are often painfully slow. In Bristol it is estimated to be just over 7mph [9] (note: this doesn’t mean car drivers move at a steady 7mph around the city), well below the speed any level of ability and fitness can ride a bicycle, often mooted as 12mph (try it, simply sit on a bike on a flat road and turn the pedals and you’ll be travelling at 12mph). Not only will a bicycle get you more reliably to your destination, but it will also give you a workout, meaning less time needed to attend fitness classes or the gym. When cycling it is also much easier to park up and drop into shops that otherwise would have warranted a dedicated journey.
Get Fewer Colds. It might seem logical that being outside in all weathers would punish your body, but on the contrary, cycling has been repeatedly linked with increased “T-Cells” which boost immune function and lower the risk of virus’s taking hold [10][11].
Pay less tax. Not because cyclists (like everyone else) “don’t pay road tax”, but because the damage motor vehicles cause, costs taxpayers dear. An average weight car (1384kg) with an average UK person (76.9kg) does 53,643 times the damage of the same person on a (very heavy) 20kg bicycle, rolling over the surface of the road [12]  majority of the estimated £14 billion repair bill footed by taxpayers. Air pollution is estimated to cost the UK as much as £54 billion every year [14], with each car in London costing the taxpayer £8,000 [15]. Collisions caused by motor vehicles £35 billion [16] and noise pollution from traffic as much as £10 billion [17].

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Car Swamping Fever at BRI Hospital

Latest Update:    A planning application is now active. Please submit any response before next Wednesday (5 Dec 2018). The application is pretty much the same as the proposal on which we reported some weeks ago (below). There has been a (claimed) thorough study into the implications for motor traffic volumes of building a huge new multi-story car park in the middle of the city. Yet one conclusion of this (thorough) study is that a new city-centre car park will reduce traffic and pollution in our city. Yes, really! You are invited to submit any…

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2018 AGM (and Mingle)

In planning for the evening, we had agreed to keep formal business brief, allowing more time for a Mingle we had promoted on social media and in member emails. The out-going Treasurer, Benn Woodward, took ByC members through the accounts. And we approved them. The out-going Chair, Eric Booth, explained that the formal Committee is now dissolved and that any member who is actively involved is a de facto ‘committee member’. Group co-ordinators gave updates on Space for Cycling, Road Justice and Communications. On behalf of BCyC, Space for Cycling co-ordinator, Nick…

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