Waterloo roundabout - frustrating and occasionally entertaining reading

Lambeth Cyclists' Clare Neely comments on this week's Waterloo Roundabout consultation response report. She says the report makes frustrating and occasionally entertaining reading.

TfL proposed a "peninsularisation" scheme where a some of a roundabout is closed to traffic so the roundabout is converted from being like an island to a peninsula. However, similar "penisularisation" schemes south of Westminster Bridge and at Elephant & Castle are difficult to follow. Those schemes feel slightly safer for someone like me, who has cycled in London for nearly 60 years. I cannot imagine anyone who is new to cycling will find the Waterloo proposals the reason to get on a bike.

As our Lambeth Cyclists response points out, getting onto the junction involves cycling across a busy bus lane and if you are heading over the river you still have to cycle with buses.

The view from Waterloo Bridge, now and as in TFL's proposals.

Why is the banned turn still in the scheme, despite widespread objection?
According to the report "This is due to the prohibitive cost associated with further carriageway widening". Or put another way, the amount of reduction in current motor vehicle traffic road capacity, is too scary for us at TfL to contemplate, even though most of those motor vehicle journeys could be walked or cycled. We, the report writers, know that in another part of TfL there is research that concludes that good cycle facilities reduce congestion, but we don't really believe them.

In the report there is the requirement, in all seriousness, "to keep traffic moving through the area to reduce pollution". Cycling is "traffic" and the way you reduce pollution is to reduce the amount of "motor vehicle" traffic using London's roads. There are two ways of doing this, reallocating space to cycling, for instance by installing with flow cycle tracks, and removing rat runs, or charging people to drive and park. Hysterical responses from people who drive, suggests the scheme is a move in the right direction on reallocation of road space to people cycling.

Other good news from the report is that local people are very concerned about an increase in rat running, so may support filtering out through motor vehicle traffic with a knock on effect of more pleasant walking and cycling away from the junction.

Cycle campaigners were right all those years ago, I would put money on us being right again, that is the scheme is a step in the right direction for encouraging cycling, but seriously flawed. That report would have taken a lot less time to read.

Read more on TfL's Waterloo consultation.

Join the discussion and share your views

Plans included in some consultations are better than others.
Help us make them better.
Join our online discussion on the Lambeth Cyclists email group.

Let others know what's going on in your part of the borough and help inform Lambeth Cyclists' response to consultations.

Recent discussions include:

  • Potential for a route on Tulse Hill
  • Lambeth Healthy Routes consultation
  • Support for two-way cycling on one-way roads.
Visit and sign up to the Lambeth Cyclists email group

Dr Bike this winter

Lambeth Council’s free Dr Bike events run every other Wednesday evening through the winter.

Dr Bike will look at your brakes, tyres, gears and the general road-worthiness of your bike. The Dr Bike mechanics will fix any problems if it's possible to do it there and then. Otherwise they will tell you what is wrong so you can take your bike to a bike shop and explain the problem.
The next few sessions, all 5-7.30pm:
  • 13 December – Brixton, Windrush Square
  • 27 December – opposite Metropolis Motorcycles, 60-62 Albert Embankment, SE1 7TP
  • 10 January – Kennington Triangle, opposite Oval tube.

Healthy Routes consultation

You can respond to Lambeth Council’s Healthy Routes consultation.

This is no long form to fill in, simply click the map and add a note.

It’s easy to sign up. You can then like comments others have made, and it’s easy to add your own pins and comments on places where you’d like to see changes.

We’d suggest two things to consider when responding:
  • Some routes have really clear potential to increase cycling, such as a good cycle track up the A23 and sorting out the messy junction south in Brixton at Coldharbour Lane and Acre Lane. Please put a pin in and support others at key opportunities like these.
  • Check for destinations you and your family could cycle to, for example supermarkets, leisure centres, schools and work. Would the routes already shown make this much better, in which case praise them, or are improvements needed in which case say what.
View the map and add comments.

Architecture themed ride - concrete two

Our next Architecture Ride will be on Saturday 30 September and will be the second episode of our exploration of the many and dazzling things that can done with an often maligned building material - Concrete!

Following last year's Concrete One ride in West and North London, we are now running Concrete Two, visiting some concrete delights of South London and the City.

While concrete is often associated with the architecture of the 1960s, and in particular the style known as brutalism, it remains a widely-used building material, employed both for its structural and aesthetic qualities. The ride will include some 60s and 70s 'classics' as well as more recent buildings that make full use of this versatile and varied building material.

Meet at the entrance to Stockwell Bus Garage on Lansdowne Way, SW4 at 10.45.
Stockwell bus garage. Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0
The ride, which will be easy-paced and as much as possible on quiet roads, will finish on the South Bank at around 4.00pm, with lunch along the way.

Ride led by Tessa Wright and Mark Knox. Enquiries - Mark 07765 945530.

New Brixton Hill plans will make conditions worse

TFL has another consultation on plans for Brixton Hill, this time to speed up the traffic turning into both Dumbarton Road and Upper Tulse Hill. Brixton Hill is a major cycle artery with poor conditions for cycling.

Plans are described as a ‘vulnerable road users safety scheme’. However, it is clear that the scheme has been designed not to protect or improve conditions for vulnerable road users but to speed up the motor vehicle movements that are causing the danger. Motor vehicle on motor vehicle collisions may be reduced but conditions for people walking or on bikes will be worse.

Removing some bus lane
The new plans include the removal of some bus lane. This February TFL’s consultation response on changes to bus lanes on Brixton Hill rejected calls for protected cycling facilities arguing “proposals provide benefits to cyclists with the improved continuity of bus lanes”. By TFL’s own logic removing sections of bus lane will be a dis-benefit to cyclists.

On sections of Brixton Hill where bus lanes are not continuous and at times when lanes are not operating vehicles commonly undertake at speed causing significant danger and discomfort for people on bikes.

See TFL's plan and email your response to TFL by 13 October.

Volume of traffic turning at speed
The danger for pedestrians and cyclists comes from the volume of traffic and the speed at which it turns into and out of these side roads. The existing build-outs were installed with the aim of slowing turning traffic to improve pedestrian and cyclist safety. Widening the junction entrances will increase vehicle and worsen conditions for for people walking and cycling.

A recent survey of residents by Brixton Hill councillors identified both Dumbarton Road and Tulse Hill Road as having major problems with fast, aggressive, rat-running traffic. The scheme states as a "benefit" that removal of the kerb build out pinch point will ease congestion at the junction. This is likely to increase the volume of traffic using these roads as rat runs and exacerbate already poor conditions on these residential streets. Pinch points were added to nearby New Park Road in 2016 with the explicit aim of increasing congestion and discouraging use, albeit with very limited success.

Rat running on residential roads
The problem to be addressed is a rat run on residential roads that crosses an A-road causing danger to both motorised traffic and vulnerable road users.

The solution to that problem is not to make that rat run easier. The solution is to block it through modal filters either at the junctions or in the streets beyond. Lambeth Cyclists is strongly against the proposed changes which will have a negative impact for people riding bikes.

Council Elections - we still need space for cycling

Next May's council elections will be here quicker than you might like.

With the elections just a few months away it is time to review progress made by your councillors against the 'ward asks' they pledged to support four years ago before being elected.

What you can do now:
  • Check out what was demanded in your ward
  • Email your councillors (who? search with your postcode) with your comments and questions on progress during their term in power.


Why comment on Lambeth's Local Plan Review

Lambeth council's local plan is coming up for review.

30 years ago it wasn't possible to walk or cycle directly along the Lambeth Thameside under Westminster and Vauxhall bridges. In the early 1990s the Lambeth Cyclists got a small change made to the Lambeth Local Plan to show a walking and cycling route along the Thames. A simple line on a map was used by the council to require major developers in those areas to fund the extensive works required to create a direct access under the bridges.

15 years ago Westminster Cycling Campaign obtained a short paragraph in the Westminster local plan which required car free office development.

Lambeth will soon be reviewing the Local Plan, watch our website and social media for details.

Many areas have a dedicated section. Perhaps there is site where you live that is likely to be redeveloped, where a new developer funded cycling route would open up a local network of routes. Perhaps there is a local school or health centre which cannot afford secure cycle parking. If it was shown on a plan, that could be funded by other development. Perhaps there is a local station which doesn't have a lift to take cycles up or down to the platform.

The line on the map which brought about the Thameside route took minutes to draw on a plan and send into the Council.

Cycle to Work Day, 13 September

This year's Cycle to Work Day is 13 September.

Even if you ride to work regularly Cycle to Work Day could help you encourage colleagues to ride to work too or tell your boss to get on their bike your employer to do more to help.

The London Cycling Campaign has an advice page with year round top tips.


Monthly meeting moves for one month only

Join us from 7.30pm on Tuesday 15 August for our monthly meeting. This month we will take an even more informal approach and meet at the Priory Arms in Stockwell instead of our usual venue.

August's meeting will be a social one at the Priory Arms
This social meeting will enable us to catch up on local cycling issues including the consultations on changes to Lambeth bridge, Waterloo bridge and Nine Elms while recognising that fewer people will be around.

The Priory Arms is a pleasant pub on Lansdowne Way, SW8 2PB. There is bicycle parking just outside.

We will have some London Cycling Campaign publications so you can spot us!


Changes to Lambeth and Waterloo Bridges - TFL consultation

TFL has launched consultations on changes to both Lambeth and Waterloo Bridges.

Do respond to the consultation with your comments by 20 August. There is some progress shown in plans for both bridges.

Lambeth Bridge consultation
Waterloo Bridge consultation

Comments from our emails and our July meeting

Lambeth Bridge 

South side
  • The cycle and pedestrian underpass along the Thames path is only marked ‘pedestrian’ on maps shown. We should ensure the status of this is not changing.
  • The cycle by-passes, that avoid the lights, should be clearly marked with coloured tarmac to reduce conflict in space shared with pedestrians.
North side
  • There should be an all green phase for people on bikes. It's often unclear how to use two stage right turns and they make the junction slower for cyclists than for motor traffic.
The north side of Lambeth Bridge, before and after according to TFL.

 Waterloo Bridge

  • Why the lack of cycle tracks on Waterloo Bridge, especially as it has had Quietway 1 painted on the carriageway?
    Lambeth Cyclist's Charlie Holland has an idea for a pedestrian bridge on the southern exit to allow space for a cycle track.
  • We need segregation on Waterloo Road past the station.
  • If the back streets a filtered to limit through traffic, the proposed banned right turn into Stamford Street could be supported as it may slightly reduce the volume of traffic up Waterloo Road.
  • Could the ramp roads be filtered?
  • Filtering Mepham Street, or a contraflow as a second best solution, could provide link from Waterloo Road to York Road avoiding IMAX and multiple waits at red lights.
The view from Waterloo Bridge, now and as in TFL's proposals.

For more comments on the scheme see what others are saying on Cyclescape.

Remember to respond by 20 August!

Lambeth Bridge consultation
Waterloo Bridge consultation

Architecture ride: Walter Segal and Self-Build

Walter Segal self build in London.
Picture by London Permaculture on Flickr.
Meet in Brockwell Park on Saturday 22 July for our next architecture themed ride.

With the housing shortage being much in discussion these days, especially in London, it is interesting to learn of an approach to housing that offers one solution - that of 'self-build'.

This ride will look at the housing that was built by self-help communities using the building techniques of Walter Segal. Segal devised a way of simplifying the process of building so that it could be undertaken by anyone, at low cost, and much quicker than conventional building. The building method eliminates the need for 'wet' trades such as bricklaying and plastering, resulting in a lightweight method which can be built with minimal experience and is ecologically sound.

Our tour will look at some examples of this type of building in South East London, going through Lewisham, and then making our way up to Surrey Docks Farm.

Meet: 10.30 outside the cafe (north side) in the middle of Brockwell Park.
Contact on the day: Philip Loy, 07577 293885

Women's Festival of Cycling ride

From Ama Asante via Olive Morris and Angela Carter, to Lillian Baylis remarkable, brilliant women have always lived and worked in Lambeth.

Women from the Lambeth Cyclists will lead a ride for men and women around Lambeth on Saturday 8 July as part of the national Women's Festival of Cycling.

We will visit a number of places associated with famous Lambeth women, the Streatham school where supermodel Naomi Campbell studied and the Brixton school designed by world famous architect Zaha Hadid, the site of the South London Women's hospital founded by two of the first women surgeons, and Vauxhall Park which owes its existence to suffragette Millicent Fawcett and campaigner for social housing and open spaces Octavia Hill.


New Lambeth Cyclists committee elected

At our annual meeting, held on Tuesday 20 June, we elected a new management committee for Lambeth Cyclists.
Lambeth Cyclists logo

The 2017-18 Lambeth Cyclists management committee is

Coordinator Charlie Holland

Treasurer Chris James

Secretary Charlie Ullman

Communications and campaigns Colin Penning

Infrastructure Simon Still and Clare Neely

Other committee members Lucy Swanson and Paola Pagliarin

Lambeth Cyclists is the Lambeth borough group of the London Cycling Campaign, registered charity 115789.

All are welcome at our monthly meetings.

Help make the difference to cycling in Lambeth

Our regular meeting this month includes our AGM. Come on along tomorrow evening from 7.30pm.

Lambeth has the largest LCC membership of any borough in London, with more than 1000 members. We know many of you take time to respond to consultations, ask questions of your councillors and help in many other ways. Thank you!

Over the coming year we would really like to boost our activity.

Could you join the Lambeth Cyclists’ committee?

You don’t need any experience or qualifications, just an interest in promoting cycling in Lambeth and a few hours you can spare each month.

If this might be of interest, come to our AGM tomorrow, Tuesday 20 June, 7.30pm to 9pm at the Stockwell Centre, 1 Studley Road, SW4 6RA. There's bike parking at the venue.

Alternatively email Charlie, Lambeth Cyclists' Coordinator. If you don’t want to join the committee, you’d still be very welcome to attend the meeting!

Calling Dr Bike!

Lambeth Council’s free Dr Bike events return on Wednesday evenings through the summer.

Dr Bike will look at your brakes, tyres, gears and the general road-worthiness of your bike.

The Dr Bike mechanics will fix any problems if it's possible to do it there and then. Otherwise they will tell you what is wrong so you can take your bike to a bike shop and explain the problem.

The police will be at the events marking bikes and adding details to BikeRegister.com. This can deter theft and will ensure that your details are on a nationwide database so if your bike is stolen, it is more likely to be returned to you.

The next few dates (Wednesdays, 5-8pm):

  • 24 May – Waterloo, outside James Maxwell Clerk Building, opposite Imax.
  • Special event: Saturday 27 May – Common People, Clapham Common bandstand, 1.30 - 7pm
  • 31 May – Stockwell, memorial garden on South Lambeth Road
  • 7 June – Brixton, Windrush Square
  • 14 June – Kennington, opposite Oval tube
  • 21 June – Clapham, at the junction of Cedars Road and Clapham Common Northside
  • 28 June – Waterloo, outside James Maxwell Clerk Building, opposite Imax.

More details about these and more Dr Bike events on Lambeth Council's website.


Architecture ride - medieval and Tudor south-west London

Our next architecture themed ride, an exploration of medieval and Tudor south-west London, will take place on Saturday 27 May.

Join us for a leisurely ride looking at the surprisingly numerous, but often overlooked, Medieval and Tudor buildings in south-west London.

This train assisted ride will start at Vauxhall station where we will catch the train to Chessington South before heading on a route taking in Old Malden, Kingston, Ham and finally Richmond upon Thames. We will then either take the train or ride back to Vauxhall.

The easy-going ride will be mostly along back roads and lanes. We will stop for lunch at Pembroke Lodge in Richmond Park.

Meet Saturday 27 May at 9.35am on the north side of Vauxhall Station to catch the 9.50am train to Chessington South. Or, join the train at Clapham Junction at 9.55am. Alternatively, meet us at Chessington at 10.20am

This ride will be led by Anthony. Contact number on the day: 07951 572330.

Get involved - attend our next meeting and consider joining our committee

Lambeth has the largest LCC membership of any borough in London, with over 1000 members.

We know many of you take time to respond to consultations, ask questions of your Councillors and help in many other ways. Thank you!

Over the coming year we would really like to boost our activity, but to do that we need to add to our existing committed committee members at our AGM on 20 June.

If this might be of interest please attend our meeting on Tuesday 16 May, 7.30pm to 9pm at the Stockwell Centre, 1 Studley Road, SW4 6RA. Alternatively email Charlie, Lambeth Cyclists' Coordinator.

Quietway 5 through Streatham

URGENT: Lambeth council is asking whether the filter installed to reduce rat-running on Estreham Road (Quietway 5) by Streatham Common station should stay or go.

We strongly believe that it should stay, and that it would be beneficial to introduce further filters in the area to make more residential streets access only to drivers.

Please respond to the survey now. The survey closes on 19 May.

If Lambeth remove this one then it is likely to make the introduction of more healthy streets measures in the borough even harder.

Architecture ride: London's hotels

Join us on Saturday 29 April for our next architecture themed ride.

Explore the history and development of London's amazing hotel scene from Victorian and Edwardian exuberance through classic 1930s to imaginative and ingenious 21st century hotel conversions. 30 million tourists a year need somewhere to sleep!

Meet in the courtyard of the last surviving galleried coaching inn in London, the George Inn, 75-77 Borough High Street, SE1 1NH at 10.30 am.

We aim to finish mid afternoon in time for a cup of tea in Hyde Park.

This ride will be led by Liz and Robin. For an queries on the day call Robin on 07769 978088.  


Timid tackling of rat running in Streatham

Lambeth Council continues its Our Streets 'neighbourhood enhancement programme' and is looking at residential streets in Streatham that suffer rat running.
In Streatham Wells, the Our Streets programme hopes to have a positive impact on some of the most used roads in the area. This is your chance to share your thoughts on the proposals. 
Despite highlighting the dire need for action in and around Valley Road we think the plans could go further so that these residential streets are places children can ride their bikes. The plans do not seem to sit well with the council's own work on Healthy Streets.

The proposals include changing speed cushions to more cycle friendly modern 'sinusoidal' humps and very limited filtering of traffic. There will be some improvements for people on foot too but a more ambitious scheme, with cycle tracks and more filtering would make a real difference. Some other bits of the borough benefit from this, it's time Streatham starts to.

The proposals do not meet the London Cycling Level of Service included in TfL's Cycling Design Standards. 

Read the proposals and take part in the survey.

Discuss Lambeth's future cycling network this Thursday

Councillor Jenny Brathwaite, Lambeth's Cabinet Member for Environment and Sustainability, is holding her first Healthy Streets Forum this Thursday in Brixton. The intention is to help shape Lambeth's Cycle Network strategy. Please come along if you would like to help Lambeth identify and prioritise steps towards creating a dense network of convenient cycle routes that appeal to all ages and abilities


Architecture ride: Croydon, south London's Alphaville

Join us on Sunday 26 March for our next architecture themed ride.

The "Alphaville" of South London, Croydon is an ambitious, confident and sometimes gritty Edge City to its big sister just 10 miles away.

With more than its fair share of negative press since it was reborn in the 1960s and designed unashamedly for the car, nonetheless it has many architectural highlights.

We'll ride to see the famous skyscrapers of "mini Manhattan" as well as innovative housing estates, Medieval palaces and Victorian Gothic industrial architecture.

Join us on Sunday 26 March, we will meet at 10.30am outside East Croydon rail station. Note the change of date since our newsletter sent to members by post in early March.

TfL reports back after Brixton Hill and Streatham Hill consultations

Lambeth based members of the London Cycling Campaign should have just received the latest London Cyclist magazine and the Lambeth Cyclists' newsletter in the post. Here is one of the updates from our newsletter.

Last autumn, Transport for London consulted on changes to bus lanes on Brixton Hill and on Streatham Hill. Now TfL has issued its responses to the issues raised in the consultations.

The two separate reports highlight the demand for improved cycling safety on this stretch of the A23, the summaries of most frequently made comments included:
  • Calls for protected cycling facilities along the A23 and at major junctions 
  • Calls for bus lane operating hours to be extended to improve cycling safety
Next steps: No space for cycling
Despite the arguments for safer cycling, the plans will proceed with only minor changes, which will leave this key route unappealing as a cycle option for most people. This presents a real challenge to Lambeth's cycle network and the Council and local councillors must press TfL for better conditions.

Make plans to join an architecture ride

Last year's Architecture Rides were rounded off in November with an absorbing tour of War Memorials, from the very obscure to the very grand, led by Marion Houghton.

Here are the rides we have arranged so far for this year:
  • Saturday 18 March - Croydon, ancient, modern, in between.
  • Saturday 29 April – Hotels, especially those converted from other uses.
  • May - The Victorian Battle of the Styles
  • June - Temporary buildings
  • August - second part of our exploration of Concrete in architecture, this time in south and east London.
  • September - a trip to Rotterdam and its architecture
  • October - Post-War Churches
  • November - Retro Retail
Dates and meeting times will be pinned down nearer the time, but expect the last weekend of the month. See Twitter for updates and reminders.

We may schedule more rides. Find out more about Lambeth Cyclists' rides.

This Tuesday: Two guest speakers at Lambeth Cyclists meeting

Fantastic guests and an opportunity not to be missed at Tuesday's Lambeth Cyclists meeting!

Lambeth Council has commissioned a plan for a dense borough-wide Cycle Network of appealing and convenient routes, this is to further its ambition to become London's most cycle friendly borough for all people, young and old. We are delighted that Mark Strong has agreed to outline the work. Mark is managing consultant of Transport Initiatives which will draw up the Network.

As members of Lambeth Cyclists, with unparalleled local knowledge, we need to be able to review and comment constructively on the plan when it has been drawn up.

To our great pleasure, Dr Rachel Aldred, chair of LCC's Policy Forum, has offered to follow on from Mark's briefing. Rachel is Reader in Transport at the University of Westminster and teaches on the university's MSc Transport Planning and Management. Rachel will set out considerations for a high quality network and take us through an exercise where we devise a cycle network for an area of Lambeth.

The meeting is this Tuesday, 17 January, from 7.30 (sharp!) to 9pm at Stockwell Community Centre, 1 Studley Road, SW4 6RA (just behind Stockwell tube station). Please come along if you can.

Views sought this weekend on our draft Thornton Ward consultation response

The word document with our draft response, to be submitted on Monday, can be viewed on our Yahoo group here. Opinions and suggestions are welcome before we submit this.

We urge those who live in or pass through the ward (north of Tooting Common roughly to the South Circular) to reply too to the consultation survey at https://www.lambeth.gov.uk/housing/regeneration/our-streets-the-neighbourhood-enhancement-programme

Thornton Ward streets scheme consultation ends Jan 10th

Are these measures sufficient to get many children cycling to the many local schools and around the neighbourhood?

Please do comment using the survey on the website.

I'll draft a Lambeth Cyclists response so would welcome comments in answer to this post or by email to lambeth_cyclists@hotmail.com

Thanks (and Happy New Year)
Lambeth Cyclists Coordinator

Kennington / Oval Cycling Improvements Meeting this Thursday

If you live, work or visit the North Lambeth area (Prince's and Oval wards), the Council would like to find out your priorities for investing payments that are made by developers to fund local improvements. A Community Local Investment Plan (CLIP) is now being drawn up and your input would be appreciated.

What are your priorities for your streets, open spaces and places?

The money can be spent on capital items (e.g. cycle parking or segregated cycle tracks) or on revenue items (e.g. cycle mechanic training programmes).

Councillor Joanne Simpson has arranged a meeting to source ideas for cycling improvements in the area. It is this Thursday 5th January at 6.30pm, upstairs at the Black Prince pub, 6 Black Prince Rd, SE11 6HS. If you can't make the meeting but have a suggestion beforehand you'd like discussed please email it to lambeth_cyclists@hotmail.com.

Ideas from the meeting will feed into Lambeth's Prince's and Oval wards CLIP consultation that runs until Friday 24 February 2017. Please reply to the survey there too.