Lambeth Council lorry drivers to see the world through cyclists' eyes

Lorry and bus drivers working for a Lambeth Council are receiving training sessions in cycling road safety in a bid to prevent collisions involving cyclists and HGVs.

Drivers of refuse vehicles, school buses and other HGVs run by Lambeth are receiving classroom and practical on-road cycle training to highlight the dangers posed to cyclists caught in lorries’ blind spots. The council is also installing signs on its lorries and buses warning of the danger of cycling of their inside.

The training, in conjunction with Cycle Training UK, involves drivers riding bikes themselves to give them greater understanding about cycling.

 Lambeth is the only London borough to have so far adopted these kinds of measures. A cyclist was killed in Streatham in April 2008 as a result of a collision with a truck.

Cllr Sally Prentice, Lambeth Council cabinet member for Environment, said: “London has the potential to be a world-class cycling city. We hope other organisations that employ HGV drivers follow our lead on this and run similar training schemes so we can make London a safer place for cyclists. The council is happy to work with companies to promote these initiatives.”

"We hope other employers follow the example" Charlie Lloyd of London Cycling Campaign, a former lorry driver, said, "LCC has been lobbying for measures such as these for a long time, and we're very pleased one borough has followed our advice." "Improving driver awareness can save lives. We hope other boroughs and employers follow the example of Lambeth Council."

Source LCC website

Cycling into 2008

As we approach the new year we are looking forward to an action packed 2008.

From a cycle campaigning point of view the big event in the year will be the 2008 London Mayoral and Greater London Authority elections.

The Mayor of London, Ken Livingstone, has a major impact on cycling in the capital in his role as head of Transport for London which is responsible for the main routes in the capital.

In order to take part in the elections you will need to be registered to vote – to find out if you are registered to vote contact Electoral Services at Lambeth on 020 7926 2685, email or see the electoral services page of the Lambeth website.

We will also be developing our activities within Lambeth Cyclists – if you have any ideas for rides, campaigns or other activities that you think we should be doing or involved in do get in touch – contact Borough Coordinator Philip Loy on 020 8677 8624 or email

£8 Cycle training available for all Lambeth residents

Lambeth Borough Council’s subsidised cycle training is still available to all residents of the borough.

The training is provided by independent cycle training specialists CTUK and costs only £8 for up to four hours training. This training is individually tailored for everyone from complete beginners to experienced cyclists who want to increase their confidence and skills in dealing with London traffic. For further information and to book the training contact CTUK on 020 7231 6005 or see

October 2008 Dr Bike in the Parks

Lambeth Transport’s Dr Bike sessions are continuing into the autumn across Lambeth’s open spaces. Come along to get your minor bike problems fixed, advice and adjustments made as well as picking up information on cycling in the borough and across London.

Dr Bike sessions in October 2008
James Clerk Maxwell building, King's College, Waterloo, SE1: 7 October
Corner of Cedars Road and Clapham Common Northside, SW4: 14 October
In front of the playground on Streatham Common, SW16: 21 October
Norwood Road entrance to Brockwell Park, SE24: 28 October
All sessions will run from 5-7pm

New Lambeth Cyclists meeting venue from October 2008

From October 2008 our meeting venue is changing: after more than 10 happy years at the Bread & Roses in Clapham Lambeth Cyclists will now be meeting at The Priory Arms, 83 Lansdowne Way, London SW8 (

Meetings will also start an hour earlier at 7.30pm but it will still be the third Tuesday of the month. The Priory Arms is just off LCN route 3 and the nearest tube is Stockwell. There is cycle parking available opposite the pub.

Two-way for cyclists in Lambeth?

You may have seen reports earlier this summer about the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea which has decided to allow cyclists to go the ‘wrong’ way up one-way streets in the borough (although only on a limited number and only for an experimental six month period).
No entry signs on Elliott Road, SW9 on
Elliott Road, SW9 - possible candidate for two way traffic?

Could such a policy work in Lambeth? We would like to think it would so over the next few months we will be compiling a list of one-way streets that we would like the Council to make two-way for cyclists.

We believe that making the streets two-way for cyclists will encourage more cycling in the borough as it will enable cyclists to reach their destinations much quicker and make the roads safer as motor traffic will no longer be able to speed along the one-way streets, it will also make ‘legal’ the activities of many current cyclists who are frustrated at being prevented from going the wrong way up one-way streets.

Cycle maintenance classes

A new set of cycle maintenance classes were due in mid-September 2008. Owing to the demand we will be running another set of five week classes before Christmas. Led by an experienced Brixton Cycles mechanic these offer a comprehensive introduction to basic bike maintenance and are an excellent means of minimizing your trips to the bike shop. The classes costs £55 for the five two hour sessions and priority is given to LCC members. For further information on the classes or to sign up for the next set of classes please contact Janet Paske.

Lambeth Cyclists out on the PR trail in Ruskin Park

Over the summer we went out to Ruskin Park to try and ease the conflict (or perceived conflict) between cyclists and pedestrians. This was part of our Chill in the Park campaign to encourage everyone to be a bit more aware of other people.
Ruskin Park, SE5 on
Ruskin Park, SE5

Lambeth Cyclists’ Clare Neely writes: "My local park provides a useful alternative cycle route to the mess that is the roads at Camberwell Green and lots of us in the know use it. There have been some reports of conflict with other people using the park so first thing one morning in August I joined PC Graham Alldus, our Ruskin park keepers and Dawn and Susie from Lambeth Transport Department to hand out leaflets to cyclists on considerate cycling.

My guess is that around 10% of the people I talked to had that shifty look which says, yes I am that cyclist who is always late for work and cycles at speed through the park to try and prevent yet another withering look or worse from my boss.

Mostly people loved the opportunity that the park route gave them to watch the leaves changing colour, cycle with children and generally start their day in a chilled fashion. The main benefit I found was agreeing with the rest of the group leafletting that considerate cycling was welcomed, which is now the council's policy, as parks across the borough provide much needed cycle routes.

But it was also a PR exercise, we gave leaflets to people walking in the park asking them to pass them onto a cycling colleague or friend and lots of people said they were glad "something was being done".

I am under no illusions that this will solve any problems as I said to one man I have a photo of my great grandfather with his ordinary (penny farthing) and I suspect that he knew about cycle/pedestrian conflict and that I will be back leafletting in Ruskin and other Parks at sometime in the future."

Lambeth Cyclists out and about

Lambeth Cyclists stall on
Over the past few months we have been out and about at various school, church and estate summer fairs and we even attended a wine and cheese evening all to spread the message about cycling in Lambeth and give away cycle maps and other goodies to promote cycling. We hope all these events spread positive messages about cycling in Lambeth and show that cyclists are not the traffic law breaking lycra clad monsters so often depicted in the press!

More maintenance classes scheduled for autumn 2008

We will be running our series of bike maintenance classes again in the autumn. Led by an experienced Brixton Cycles mechanic these offer a comprehensive introduction to basic bike maintenance and are an excellent means of minimizing your trips to the bike shop. The classes are spread over five weeks on Wednesday evenings starting at 6:30pm and held at the Lambeth Accord building on Brixton Road, SW9. There is a small charge to cover costs and preference will be given to LCC members. If you are interested in attending these classes please contact Janet Paske

London Freewheel departs from Lambeth 21 September 2008

The second London mass participation cycle ride, the London Freewheel, will take on Sunday 21 September 2008. Look out for further details on our website and email group nearer the time.  You can register for the event at but remember you do not need to be registered to take part – just turn up and pedal away!

My Lambeth cycle: Councillor John Whelan

A new (we hope) regular feature in which we will be asking prominent Lambeth personalities about why they cycle in the borough.

Photo of Councillor John Whelan on

For the inaugural feature we have asked Councillor John Whelan to outline his cycling life in Lambeth.

John Whelan (left) is a Conservative Party Councillor for Thurlow Park Ward in Tulse Hill, he is also leader of the Conservative opposition on Lambeth Borough Council. He proudly boasts that four out of the six Conservative councillors regularly cycle – the highest percentage of any of the political groups on the council.

When asked why he cycles he writes  “Peer pressure from my family, the need to get fitter, and the cost of motoring were three drivers for taking up cycling—plus an unused bike. My plan was to start modestly by cycling between home and the town hall and then use public transport as well as to cycle round my ward for local meetings. The big bonus was meeting loads of constituents in the street or park and becoming more aware of potholes, broken pavements, and grot spots. The helmet—partner said ‘no’ but daughter replied, ‘Dad, your head is the first thing that hits the ground

Bike Week 2008 in Lambeth

Dr Bike at Lambeth Bike Week 2008 on

Thank you to everyone who took part in Bike Week 2008 in Lambeth which as ever proved to be very popular.

We kicked off with a fascinating 'Black History' ride around the sites of South London. This was led by local historian Steve Martin, who managed to lead a very interesting bike ride after years of non-cycling!

The cyclists' breakfast and Dr Bike were very popular and the CTUK cycle mechanics were able to fix a steady stream of bikes.

Later at our regular meeting we were joined by Richard Ambler and Susie Harrison of Lambeth’s Transport department and Councillor Nigel Haselden, deputy Cabinet Member for Sustainability, who is responsible for cycling in the borough, to discuss the council's cycling initiatives and how best we can work with Lambeth.

The 'parks' ride on Saturday was extremely fascinating as it revealed the many gems to be found in South East London, many of which we never knew were there. We had of course our firm favourite, the cyclists' barbecue, which is always a popular event, plus the Family Fun Day at which we met dozens of families, and a couple of cycling clowns! Thanks to everyone for helping put together our events!

Chill in the Park!

That is the message that we want to send out to all cyclists as we strive to avoid conflict on the paths of Lambeth’s parks.

The initiative came out of our May meeting where we were joined by PC Graham Alldus of the Lambeth Police Herne Hill Safer Neighbourhood Team. He came to talk to us about cycling in parks and how best to resolve the, at times, conflicting priorities of cyclists and pedestrians in parks.
Lambeth Cyclists in Brockwell Park on
Here Clare Neely reflects on the issue...
"Cycling politics can be inflammatory at times, do we support segregated cycle lanes, do we always give way to pedestrians, is security of cycle parking or 20mph our key campaign issue, but park politics....

As I have discovered people are very very passionate about their local park and rightly so, parks are the lungs of our wonderful city. Park life is about strolling, chilling, and hanging out, all of which are difficult to do if someone is bearing down on you on two wheels at 20 mph determined to be the first into the office.

In parks the uneasy truce between cyclists and pedestrians which exists on the highway is blown apart, police officers attending parks meetings have the full force of people wanting to enjoy a walk in the park without having to look out for cyclists, and can be overenthusiastic in their dealings with people cycling in the park.

Cycling in Lambeth's parks is probably here to stay, but note to self, next time I am cycling through Ruskin Park to catch the train from Denmark Hill I will leave a little time so I can cycle slowly, smile at my fellow park users and perhaps most importantly give us all a well earned breathing space.

Lambeth Cyclists are working with the Council, local park groups and the Police on what can be summarised as a chill in the park campaign. Over the summer and autumn we will be distributing leaflets on Clapham Common and Brockwell Park to remind cyclists to give priority to pedestrians.

We hope that the Police will also join us on these days to enforce road traffic law among car drivers especially with regard to features such as advanced stop lines which are routinely ignored by motorists and motor bike riders."

Lambeth consults on bike parking in the borough: July summer sale!

Lambeth Council is seeking feedback from cyclists in Lambeth on the best places to install cycle parking in the borough.

Note that this is for on-street cycle parking, not residential cycle parking, which is being dealt with as a separate initiative.

Please contact us with your siggestions:
  • location: be as specific as you can
  • reason: why at this location?
Note that feedback is open for the month of July 2008!

£8 Subsidised cycle training for residents of Lambeth!

Lambeth Council has arranged discounted private tuition in cycle confidence training for anybody who lives or works in the borough.

Learn to ride a bike
Get road confidence training
Be accompanied as you try riding to work

To arrange training, or for more information, please contact:

Cycle Training (UK) Ltd
Tel 020 7231 6005 (10am-5pm, Mon to Fri)

Also available...

Learn bike maintenance

Promote cycling amongst your workforce

Road riding courses for your school

Bike fixing activities for your youth group

Report that pot hole! Who to contact for road defects in Lambeth

Lambeth roads
Report that pothole - contact Lambeth Council's call centre:Email t&
Tel 020 7926 9000

Lambeth Council is the highway authority for the London Borough of Lambeth. For borough routes, the web link for the department that deals with cycling and streets is below:
Lambeth Transport and Streets roads and pavement repairs page

Note that Transport for London have principal responsibility for the Red Routes (e.g. A23 and South Circular) and undertake highway schemes in cooperation with Lambeth Council.

Transport for London (TfL)
Road defects can also be reported on TfL's website:
Tel 0845 305 1234
TfL is the strategic highway authority for Greater London.
Tfl roadworks and street faults page

Lambeth North Junction improvement consultation May 2008

Message from Lambeth Council:
Lambeth North consultation on

The London Borough of Lambeth has received funds to make improvements to the conditions at the junction of Hercules Road/Kennington Road/Westminster Bridge Road.
The enhancements will deliver better conditions for all road users including cyclists, motorists and pedestrians. The public environment will be improved, with safer conditions for pedestrians and cycles, and bus journey times will be improved.

Your views are important
We are asking local residents and businesses for their views on our proposed improvements.
Please see downloads on the right hand column of this web page.
Completed questionnaires can be returned to the following freepost address:
Patricia Witter
Transport Strategy Consultation Officer
1st Floor Blue Star House
234-244 Stockwell Road

Deadline for responses: Friday 30th May 2008

Project docs

Message from Lambeth Cyclists:
If you intend replying to this consultation, please let us know what you think by copying us in to your email / letter.Thank you very much for your response.

Lambeth North Consultation (May 2008)

Shawcross re-elected as Lambeth and Southwark GLA Member

Valerie Shawcross has been re-elected as Greater London Authority member for Lambeth and Southwark increasing her majority to over 23,000 votes. We look forward to working with Valerie as our constituency representative.

We are pleased to see that Caroline Pidgeon who stood as the Liberal Democrat representative in Lambeth and Southwark has been elected as one of the three Liberal Democrasts on the London-wide list of seats. We hope that she will be able to work to promote Lambeth and Southwark in the Authority.

In terms of the Mayoral election Lambeth and Southwark overwhelmingly voted for Ken Livingstone over Boris Johnson - Labour's Ken Livingstone gained 80,172 first choice votes compared to 47,754 for Conservative Boris Johnson and 20,530 for Liberal Democrat Brian Paddick.

All the results are on the London Elects website

Railton Road consultation

Lambeth Council have requested feedback from Lambeth Cyclists on road safety proposals along Railton Road.

The proposals include:
  • Raised table at junction with Leeson Road
  • Raised Zebra crossing by junction with Effra Parade
  • Raised table at junction with Shakespeare Road
Download the full plan of the Railton Rd proposals is available as a PDF download below the right hand column.
Please let us have your comments by Friday 6 May 2008

Information on cycle security in Lambeth and beyond

LCC information
See the London Cycling Campaign page on bicycle security and download the information booklet. LCC also does cycle theft insurance for its members.
Brick Lane Market

The LCC group in Tower Hamlets have a good website with information on stolen bikes and have begun a letter-writing campaign to combat the illegal trade in stolen bikes in Brick Lane. Don't forget thieves operate all over London so this problem will almost certainly affect you!

Stolen Bike Index
The Stolen Bike Index is a UK based not-for-profit site that aims to provide advice on avoiding bicycle theft, to reunite people with their bikes, and to help the trade avoid buying from thieves.

It features a reporting system for stolen bikes which can be received by email alerts using the stolenbike-uk Yahoo group. You don't have to join however to check the message archive of stolen bike alerts.

Lambeth Cyclists Annual Meeting 15 April 2008

On Tuesday 15 April 2008 we will be holding our Annual Meeting upstairs at the Bread and Roses, Clapham Manor Street, SW4 starting at 8:30pm.

This will be a chance to review the year gone by and look forward. We are pleased to welcome this year the (relatively) new Director of the London Cycling Campaign Koy Thompson. He will be talking about the development of LCC over the next few years. It will also be a chance for us to give our views as members of one the largest LCC borough groups.

At the meeting we will also be seeking volunteers to serve on the Lambeth Cyclists Management Committee. The Management Committee is made up of five or six people and is responsible for overseeing all Lambeth Cylcists’ activity. So if you have ideas about the development of Lambeth Cyclists and put yourself forward! If you want further information on what the role involves or have any other queries please contact Borough Coordinator Philip Loy.

Lambeth and Southwark cyclists to question GLA candidates

On Tuesday 8 April 2008 we will be joining with Southwark Cyclists to hold a hustings meeting to which we have invited all the candidates standing for the Greater London Authjority in the Lambeth and Southwark constituency.

This is the third such event that we have run and will allow us to find out what our potential representatives’ views are, it will also allow us to give them an idea of cyclists’ priorities.

The Greater London Authority is responsible for holding the Mayor of London to account and also for overseeing the work of London bodies such as Transport for London which controls most of the major roads across London.

The meeting will be held at Herne Hill Baptist Church, Half Moon Lane, SE24 on Tuesday 8 April 2008, starting at 7pm. All are welcome – whether members of LCC or not.

The choice of location is not accidental! Herne Hill lies on the border of the two boroughs and as you are probably aware there has been much controversy over a scheme to improve Herne Hill junction, a decision about which was due to be made as we were going to press (see item elsewhere).

We will be sending a list of questions/ issues to the GLA candidates beforehand to give them an idea of our concerns. If you have any particular cycling or wider transport-related issues that you would like to see addresses at the meeting please contact us before Monday 7 April and we will pass it on to the candidates, there will of course be a chance to raise issues and questions from the floor during the meeting.

At the time of going to press six political parties had announced that they will be contesting the Lambeth and Southwark seat – a full list will be available once nominations have closed on 1 April.

At the last election our GLA member Valerie Shawcross (Labour) had a majority of just over 5,000 so all the candidates will be seeking to gain as many votes as possible – the combined membership of Lambeth Cyclists and Southwark Cyclists (around 2,000 people) could decide which way the seat goes.

Mayoral and GLA election 2008

On 1 May 2008 elections will be held for the post of London Mayor (currently held by Lambeth’s most famous former resident Ken Livingstone) and also the Greater London Authority which acts as the legislature holding the Mayor to account for decisions made. These elections are especially important for cyclists as the Mayor has direct control over Transport for London which is responsible for all the major roads in the borough and for promoting cycling and other forms of sustainable transport London-wide.

Further information on the London election, including a list of candidates when nominations have closed, is available at

Not registered to vote?
If you are not registered to vote in your current location you have until 16 April 2008 to do so in order to vote on 1 May. To find out more about registering contact Lambeth Borough Council Electoral Services department on 020 7926 2144 or see the Lambeth website where you can download a form to register.

Free Dr Bike surgeries in 2008

Lambeth Council has arranged free Dr Bike surgeries to take place every week throughout the summer!
There is no excuse not to fish that bike out of the back of your shed and get it back on the road. Cycling improves your health and if it is used as an alternative form of transport will reduce CO2 emissions too. Cycling in the summer is a fantastic way to get around and to see the borough from a vantage point unobtainable from four wheels.

Bring your bike to the location nearest to you for a free quick service including brakes, tyres and gears every week from April 2008. The sessions take place between 5 - 7pm at each of the venues.

Outside Kings College
Clapham Common
Streatham Common
Brockwell Park

Outside Kings College  - opposite the Imax, outside James Maxwell building, Waterloo Road

Clapham Common – by the junction of Cedar’s Road and Clapham Common Northside

Streatham Common – next to the playground adjacent to Streatham High Street

Brockwell Park – opposite Rosendale Road, entrance off Norwood Road

We look forward to seeing you there. Happy cycling.

Tuesday 2 April 2008: Back on Your Bike

On Tuesday 2 April 2008 we will be giving out croissants and coffee and offering a Dr Bike service to cyclists between 8 and 9am on Brixton Road.

The event is being held to encourage people back to cycling after the clocks go forward for British Summer Time. The event will be held at the front of 338 Brixton Road, SW9, do call in if you are passing to adjust your bike and stop off for a coffee!

If you would like to volunteer to help please contact Philip Loy.

Southwark threatens anti cycling byelaw on Thames Path

Southwark Borough Council is attempting to introduce a byelaw that would ban cycling on a section of the Thames Path cycle route near to Tate Modern.

The Council claims that the byelaw is being implemented to ensure that there is no conflict between pedestrians and cyclists in this well used stretch of the Thames Path.

Our neighbouring London Cycling Campaign borough group Southwark Cyclists have protested against the proposed byelaw highlighting the strange signals it sends out that cycling is not allowed on one of the oldest designated cycle paths in London, part of the Sustrans national network. If passed the byelaw would set a dangerous precedent which could apply to the Lambeth stretch of the Thames Path.

If you regularly use this path you will be aware that its virtually impossible to cycle along this stretch when there are lots of pedestrians using the path and so a byelaw is unnecessary. We suggest that there are better ways of enforcing pedestrian priority than banning cycling.

Mayoral and GLA elections 2008

As you are probably aware on 1 May 2008 in London elections are being held for the Mayor of London and Greater London Assembly. These elections are especially important for cyclists as the Mayor has direct control over Transport for London which is responsible for all the major roads in the borough and for promoting cycling and other forms of sustainable transpiort London-wide.

The Mayor of London (Ken Livingstone) will be standing for a third term as will our GLA member Valerie Shawcross in the Lambeth and Southwark constituency.

We are in discussions with Southwark Cyclists about the possibility of arranging a joint hustings meeting to find out the candidates’ views candidates on cycling and other sustainable transport issues.

The hustings will provisionally take place on Tuesday 8 April 2008 in a location in Herne Hill. The choice of location is not accidental – Herne Hill lies on the border between Lambeth and Southwark and the TfL scheme to ‘improve’ the junction met with much controversy. No doubt this will be one of the issues raised at the meeting! Look out for further information in our next newsletter or on the website or email list.

If you are not registered to vote in your current location you have until 9 April 2008 to do so in order to vote on 1 May. To find out more about registering contact Lambeth Borough Council Electoral Services department on 020 7926 2144 or see the Lambeth website where you can download a form to register.

New sets of maintenance classes start 5 March 2008 and 30 April 2008

We've organised two more sets of bike maintenance classes to be run bySimon Bendel of Brixton Cycles in the basement of 336 Brixton Road, SW9.

Each set of classes takes place in a small group and covers the basics of bike maintenance so that you should be able to undertake minor adjustments and repairs to keep your bike on the road for longer. Each set is a series of five two hour classes on Wednesday evenings starting at 6:30pm.

The next maintenance classes will be starting on 5 March and 30 April. The cost is £55, £5 if on income related benefits. If you are interested in attending teh classes please contact Janet Paske, tel 07740 457 528.

Are you involved in planning a spring or summer fair or fete?

We get occasional requests to run stalls at spring and summer fairs, school fetes and are happy to run stall s promoting cycling, handing out maps and leaflets and offering advice. We are however aware that there are many more events going on that we don’t hear about. If you are involved in planning an event do get in contact and we will be happy to run a stall, in some cases we would be able to offer a ‘Doctor Bike’ service giving advice and carrying out minor bike repairs.

Bikeweek Brainstorm

The February meeting of Lambeth Cyclists will be given over to a Bikeweek Brainstorm where we will be devising the programme of events for Bikeweek which will be held on 14-22 June 2008. So if you have any ideas for rides, social events or other BikeWeek activities come along!

Advance warning: Lambeth Cyclists AGM
Our April meeting is our Annual General Meeting when we elect a new management Committee to take forward the running fo Lambeth Cyclists for the next year. This is your chance if you would like to be more involved in Lambeth Cyclists whether in campaigns, rides or any other aspect. Look out for further details in the next newsletter or contact Philip Loy.