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Update from the CSS group: Simon Saville, David Stoker, Tom Harrison, Jeremy Leach and Rose McNamee

In the run up to the May local election, we sent our list of “asks” to the main political parties

  • Low Traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) across the whole Borough
  • A full network of cycle routes on main roads and side roads
  • Borough-wide Controlled Parking Zones (CPZs), and car parking charges that reflect the true impact of driving
  • More provision of secure cycle storage – remove the waiting list

 … all to be implemented by 2026, essential if the Council is to meet its net-zero commitment by 2030.

These are still valid today. We are pleased that the Council has retained the 10 Street Space Schemes (LTNs) that were installed during the pandemic – but progress on more schemes is very slow. Similarly, the Council has said that it’s doubling the number of cycle hangars, but the reality is that there is still a long waiting list.

We have recently had meetings with Kieron Williams (Leader of the Council) and Catherine Rose (Cabinet Member with responsibility for Leisure, Parks, Streets and Clean Air), and separately with James McAsh (Cabinet Member for Climate Emergency and Sustainable Development). Both meetings were positive and we hope that we can exert a positive influence on the Council’s plans for active travel. Our aim has been to build a positive relationship that allows us to bring pressure in a constructive way.

Specifically, we are pressing for a re-start of the Cycle Stakeholder Group meetings, which took a back seat during Covid. We have indications that, along with other groups, we can be involved to give input to new schemes while they are at an early stage. We have also offered to give input to the new Cycling Strategy and Movement Plan that the Council is updating.

In mid September, the Council signed off its new Delivery Plan 2022-20-26, “Fairer, Greener, Safer” (see Fairer, Greener, Safer Southwark’s Council Delivery Plan). It’s encouraging to see that this commits to making Southwark “a Cycle Friendly borough”. The Council is committing to doubling the number of cycle hangars, rolling out more segregated cycle lanes, extending cycle hire, offering free cycle lessons for all Southwark residents, and creating new ways for residents on low incomes to access an affordable bike. This is good, but we believe that the plans do not go far enough or fast enough.

We will keep pressing for faster delivery.

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