CYCLEWight

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This Website was updated
Monday 23rd November 2020



2020 CYCLEWight AGM
This years AGM will be held on 4th Dec at 19:30 in line with current COVID-19 restrictions. It will be an on-line event. If you wish to participate, contact the committee via the "Contact Us" menu
CYCLEWight
Is an advocacy group that seeks better cycle provision on the Island. We will cooperate with any organisation or individual that wishes to work towards that goal. The group participates in ways to encourage more people of all ages to learn of the joys and benefits of cycling.
   

Join or renew Online Here
            

APPLY ONLINE
To join CYCLEWight! We need YOUR support to help us continue promoting cycling and campaigning for better conditions for cyclists on the
Isle of Wight!


CYCLEWight Bells
Have you received one of our bells? Please register with CYCLEWight to find out about your temporary membership  cyclewight@gmail.com
Emergency Active Travel Grant
The recent reversal of the Emergency Active Travel Fund measures, has highlighted the need for proper consultation and long term planning approach to cycle infrastructure design and build. The IWC, with government funding, proposed a number of small local schemes in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, only for them to be cancelled a few days later.
 
Some of the schemes proposed by the IWC were so far removed from the schemes desired by cyclists as to be meaningless. Very short, isolated sections of cycle lane that fail to form part of a coherent cycling network do not serve the needs of cyclists and where there is no clear rationale for such measures in cycling terms, it is hard to put a positive case for such measures to residents and local businesses.
 
The Beckford Rd scheme in Cowes is a case in point. CycleWight has long campaigned for a contra-flow cycle lane along Birmingham Rd as part of a vision to create a joined up route between the Red Jet and the start of the cycle path on Arctic Rd and onward to Newport. This scheme advocated by CW was one of their many proposals to IWC. It was replaced by the misguided Beckford Rd project – a scheme that made no sense to CW, who were not consulted on it and did not support it.
 
The fact remains that a safe and convenient route between the Red Jet, Cowes town centre and the cycle path at Arctic Road is essential if we are to make the most of the cycling link to Newport and to encourage more people to take to their bikes -  something that is universally recognised as good for people’s health, the environment and the public purse. CycleWight urges the IWC to address this need in a coherent way and to show long term commitment to finding a solution.
 
Some of the Emergency Active Travel schemes were supported by CW and are disappointed that they are not going to be progressed using the current funding. The scheme to limit traffic along Little London would have had major benefits for people cycling and walking on what is an important recreational and commuter route.  
 
CW has always sought to engage with the IWC and contribute ideas and resources to improving conditions for people who want to cycle. We have written our own Cycling Strategy and have contributed to the Council’s Local Walking and Cycling Infrastructure Plan. But while the Council has adopted these plans, at present there is a lack of financial commitment or policy to seeing them realised.
   
We support the introduction of new, high quality cycling infrastructure that makes a genuine difference to the quality of the cycling experience and other measures, such as 20mph urban speed limits, that give people who want to cycle a safe environment in which to do so. To achieve these goals, the IWC needs to adopt a long-term strategy for cycling and show the commitment and leadership to see plans realised.
 
Please follow this link to view 3 articles on the evidence for better town centres.
           
Innovation Grant
CW applied for an innovation grant from the Access Fund, which is a government scheme on the Island to encourage active travel. We have been successful before with this fund. Our project this time is to engage with the cyclists, who may have begun cycling this year because of the present crisis or do so occasionally. How can they be encouraged to cycle regularly for leisure, for work and for utility reasons? We felt that these people need support and advice; a 'bicycle buddy' but with a local focus. How to engage them? It was felt that if we had a bell for their bike that could be our first point of contact. It would be an opportunity to discover their riding issues, while an expert team put a bell on their bike. We will also issue them with the postcard which has our details on. More information to follow.Get in touch if you would like to help.
   
CW getting bigger and better.
The committee has decided to try to be more active in recruiting new members to CycleWight. To raise our profile we have decided to have some posters and postcards printed to be placed in strategic places around the Island. The postcard has the same design as poster but on the reverse it lists some of our campaigns in which we are involved. If you think you could place a poster somewhere or take some postcards please do contact us through cyclewight@gmail.com. We are thankful to Pinkeye Graphic for a speedy turnaround.
 
The change in the way we run our membership by going onto an on-line system has been very successful as it is much easier for people to join/re-join. We have seen over 20 new people join CW in the last couple of months, which is excellent. There will be other exciting news soon!
              
Widen my Path
This web site, we feel, can play a very important part to help us work with the council on its social distancing work. It allows people to identify places on an interactive map where they think changes can be made to allow better movement for walkers and cyclists. It allows people to agree with other users, Take a look Here. It is run by a social enterprise company called Cycle Streets. Their web site says, “CycleStreets is a social enterprise working to get more people cycling, through the provision of a cycle journey planning giving really good, safe routes, and through tools for the cycling advocacy community".

Pot Holes etc
Everyone's favourite topic. It is fair to say that many roads on the Island are now a very good surface. The Round the Island Cycle route is in the main part excellent. It has become a visitor attraction in its own right. BUT there are still places where for cyclists roads are grim. Cyclists as  a group must report defects. The argument goes "Nothing is done so why bother." Records are kept and the pressure of number of reports will have an effect. https://fms.islandroads.com/  is the reporting system.
This is particularly true at the moment for defects on the NCN routes. if you are unhappy with the response you can contact IR by email.info@islandroads.com and ask for more information on your issue. A last resort is to contact CycleWight. We do meet with IR and IWC regularly and issues are raised.
You can also use the apps "FixMyStreet" or "Fill That Hole".

CYCLEWight is affiliated to Cycling UK
They provide us with advice, insurance as well as being one of the leading campaign bodies in the Country. You can join Cycling Uk for a reduced fee of £25 by being a member of CycleWight. You will not receive their magazine or some of the other benefits by being a full member but it will include you having third party insurance. If you are interested please contact us through the web site.

Wight Cycling Tips
There are some very useful tips for cycling on the Isle of Wight - Click here for more details



Things YOU can do
            
Report Issues Affecting Cyclists
  Please take time to report potholes
 Any Rights of Way obstructions

Support Our Campaigns
We campaign on local cycling issues and
schemes. Join us.  Tell your friends.
Write to your local MP


CYCLEWight Newsletter
The latest CYCLEWight Newsletter
[November 2020] is available HERE...

A Huge Step Forward?
 
Two new documents have been published by the government  which will be very important in helping the Island to become carbon free;
Gear Change: A Bold Vision for Cycling and Walking” and “Cycle Infrastructure Design LTN 1/20”
 
“Gear Change “ sets out new standards to ensure active travel provision is such that it will encourage more people to walk and cycle. As part of this initiative the government has set out new design guidelines, which should now ensure that the cycling infrastructure is of a high standard LTN1/20. As a group we are most heartened that these documents contain many of the points that have been part of our advocacy in the last 20 years. Importantly these guidelines have more sanctions than previously.  If they are ignored Councils will not receive any funding from the Department of Transport. More details will be in the CYCLEWight Newsletter.
 
You can view "Gear Change: A Bold Vision" by clicking HERE.
You can view "Cycle Infrastructure Design" by clicking HERE.

Access Fund Report 2018/19
The Report can be viewed HERE

LCWIP
The Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan has been approved by the Department of Transport and has now become part of Council policy. The government wanted each local authority to draw up a walking and cycling plan for its area.  We are led to believe that in comparison to other LCWIPs from around the country ours compares very favourably. CW provided much of the background information for the plan. A decision was made that the plan was not to cover the whole of the Island but to concentrate on Ryde and Newport because of the way the task was set out by the government. It comprises of a general plan and then several indexes covering walking and cycling routes in both towns. The document does not come with resources but is to be used as a tool be to seek funding. We have written to the council to congratulate them. We have also pointed out that there should be mention that the LCWIP's proposals are part of a strategic cycle network for the whole Island and any work carried out  links to that network. Secondly that the LCWIP should be seen as a template for other areas to follow to ensure that the Island has a comprehensive  and consistent walking and cycling plan.
 In the present edition there are some typographical errors and a small piece is obviously missing. Hopefully this will be rectified. Now it is published CW will consider if it is necessary to update its own cycling strategy.
You can now view the documents from This Page

Going Electric
Like many people I came to adult cycling in middle age, looking for something to compliment gym sessions, and give me some fresh air.  Alas being late to the party meant hills – more correctly the strength to cycle up them - were always my bête noir, and this was exacerbated by a knee injury in 2017 that got progressively worse.  In the middle of 2018 I started to think about going electric. TAV in Ryde couldn’t have been more helpful, and I found myself the owner of a Merida electric hybrid. Best decision ever!  My Fitbit tells me I burn around 2/3 of the calories I used to burn from a conventional cycle, but like many electric cyclists I find myself going further and having more confidence.
The choice of off, eco, normal and high power outputs allows adjustment for tiredness, road conditions, and gradients, and whereas cycling used to be a distinct exercise / leisure activity for me, now the bike sometimes comes out for a quick trip to the shops, so cycling has become more functional.  Dare I say it more enjoyable as well.  A question that I sometimes get is range on the battery – well it depends. On full charge the Eco setting gives a range of 60 miles, but that assumes a consistent power draw, which, of course, doesn’t happen.  Last autumn I rode from home in Brading to St Catherines and back, outward on the coast via Sandown, Shanklin and Ventnor, and back inland via Godshill and Whitwell.  Outward the hills at Luccombe meant I used 50% battery on the first half of the ride, but the flatter homeward route only used 20%, leaving me a good reserve at the end of a 30 mile ride.  I was a bit apprehensive moving to an electric bike. Maybe it felt like cheating?  However it’s meant I’ve been able to cycle again within weeks of two rounds of knee surgery, and I’ve got the confidence to tackle the ups and downs of the Island.  In short a decision I don’t regret, and one I’d recommend to anyone else thinking about it. Jess Garbett *Recent research shows people who use electric bikes actually exercise as much as people with conventional bikes as they do tend to go further and use them more.

Bicycle Theft
The Police have responded to the many bikes that have been stolen over the last few week on the Island. Cyclists can help themselves by registering their bikes and keeping a detailed description of each one. (Everyone has at least three!) You can download a form here which will help you to do this.


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