Isle of Wight Cycling Strategy document has now been released. Please read the article below. You can download the document in pdf format using the BLUE button below
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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.
The latest Newsletter [Feb 18] is availableHERE...
Minutes of the Cycle Forum meeting [Oct 17] can be viewed HERE...
Minutes of the Committee meeting [Dec 17] can be viewedHERE..
Newport permeability study
As many of you will know CycleWight have been awarded a grant from the Awards for All, part of the Lottery, to do a permeability study of Newport. This is a means of looking at ways to make Newport more walking and cycling friendly. CW will then work with IWC and Newport Parish Council to implement the recommendations. It is very much aimed at doing things that are simple and relatively easy to implement.
The report should be ready for publication by the end of January. A presentation was made at the “Newport Travel Forum” on Saturday 20th Jan, on some of the findings from the study and suggestions to improve movement around the town. The map below shows the routes at present in Newport that can be deemed as cycle friendly. The issue is to join them up so people can walk and cycle seamlessly across the town.
Some of the ideas suggested would be a contra flow cycle lanes in Crocker Street and Trafalgar Road, raised platforms at junctions so as to slow cars, 20mph zones in all residential areas and to create a joint use path alongside Medina Way.
Newport Parish Council has commissioned a pedestrian audit in the last few months. It sets out a series of actions that could be taken to make it easier to walk around Newport as well as it make it look more pleasing. This in tandem with our report should provide a powerful set of documents to set out plans for a better Newport.
Far too often the cry is heard, “It can’t be done” It could be, as one only has to go and visit places elsewhere. At the Travel Forum there were several examples were shown.
We will ensure that some of the suggestions and ideas made will be shared with other Island towns.
CycleWight and Visit Isle of Wight met with representatives of Island Roads over various issues of concern. Two of the issues raised were road and path closures and the use of barriers along the paths, which make cycling so difficult.
There was an acknowledgment that signage could be improved, as there are occasions where roads were closed to cars but pedestrians (and cyclists) could access routes. Cyclists would be expected to dismount where the work is taking place, as it is illegal for people to ride on pavements. IR and the Council have to be congratulated on the temporary bridges they have put up in various locations when mending bridges. IR agreed to liaise more with CW and VisitIow on occasions where routes would have an impact on cyclists and walkers.
The barriers proved to be more of an issue. The barriers along the routes are there to slow people down, and to dissuade motorcyclists. This was raised by us as there was a barrier replaced on the Shide Path after it was taken down when the cross Newport route was instigated. The committee feels that there are too many, some of them are badly positioned and it can make it difficult for people with bike trailers, tagalongs mobility scooters, etc. In many cases it is felt a post in the centre of the track is all that is necessary.
We would like to remind people to contact the IR web site to report defects. There is a register and remedial works can take place if there is enough reporting of an issue. The Shalfleet traffic lights are an example.
Cycle Fest 2018
Dates announced. 25th August-2nd September. We look forward to hearing the plans early in the New Year.
The Active Travel Innovation Grant
As part of the Access Fund there was grant money for innovative ideas for sustainable transport. The first round successful applicants have been announced. Two of the bids are linked to cycling: Seaview Hotel and The Bay Boutique Bed and Breakfast in Freshwater. The Seaview Hotel is to offer electric bikes to it staff and customers who do not have a car. At the Bay Boutique the business is based on an environmental principles with sustainability being one of the key motivators. Paul Mocroft, one of the owners, said they were very excited by the award. They had tried electric bikes and could see how it meant people could access the natural beauty of the Island without use of a car.
Both venues are offering accommodation and e-bike hire packages for guests with tips on where to cycle making it easy for visitors to get out on two wheels.
CycleWight have been in contact with both establishments and are providing support in their ventures. It is pleasing to see that they will have the winter to perfect their offers before the 2018 season gets going.
This has been a busy time for CycleWight. There have been several planning applications on which we have commented: Carisbrooke College, Ryde House, Christ the King College, a housing development at Rookley and the cycling hubs at Cowes and Newport. The decision on some of these are still pending but it is good to report that our objections to the paltry provision for cycle parking at the new Carisbrooke College was improved. The school's travel plan is to be written now rather than when the new college is opened. Let us hope we just as successful with some of the others.
Latest News - Further to the above we can report sadly the car park for Christ the King College on Vectis Field has been given the go ahead. It is supposed to be temporay. Let us hope so. Sadly the Rookley development has also been give the go ahead without our suggestion that the footpath be developed to join the National Cycle Network which is close by. The development at Scats on Blackwater Road has been declined. One of the reasons in the planners report was the lack of a link to the cycle track directly behind the new development which was pointed out by CycleWight.
Bicycle Island App
Some of you may have heard but there is now a Bicycle Island app. This is an exciting development which is the first 'smart cycling corridor' in the country. It is based on the Cowes to Newport cycle track. You can sign up by using a smartphone, just look on the app store for Bicycle Island. It has two purposes. Firstly it is meant to encourage people to cycle. It records journeys along the track. The app sets regular distance challenges for the community to aim at. Every user’s journey along the cycle route contributes to the overall target. If the target is reached a local Isle of Wight charity gets a donation. Secondly visitors to the Island can use the app to find out about thiar journey along the track with interesting infomration. This has been launched in the last few weeks.
LSTF/ Bicycle Island gallery
Follow this link to pictures of some of the different projects delivered via the LSTF and Bicycle Island grants.
The first plans for the £9 million re-structuring of Newport’s road systems has been announced. Closing date for comments is 21st Feb. CycleWight do feel that this a little late in the process as dates are already planned for work to commence! There is to be joint use path from Hunny Hill to the hospital and a toucan crossing to assist pedestrians and cyclists to cross the road. The detail on the plan issued to the public poses many questions such as the increase in speed and its impacts on other parts of the town.
The plan itself is within a document that can be downloaded from the Council’s web site under the title, “Highway improvement schemes 2018” or from our web site under the heading ‘Campaigning” drop down menu.
The following points the committee think could be commented on. Please use as many points as you wish. Please do try not to copy and paste so each submission has its own identity. Please do get back to us with your ideas and views.
* The joint use path on Hunny Hill, Parkhurst Road, Medina Way is welcome. There is a need for there to be very careful planning and design on how cyclists are to access the route in Hunny Hill. The path should be at least three meters wide to allow space for all users.
* There needs to be a joint use path on the eastern side of Medina Way, from the hospital exit. There is room for this development. It should go to the ‘B&Q’ roundabout. This will take cyclists off the busiest part of the upcoming junction. It will give them easier approach to the factory estate. It would also allow them access to the college and the underpass, which is already joint use. This could also lead to further development of the path along side the eastern side of Medina Way in the Coppins Bridge direction running parallel to the college grounds .
* The turning of Medina Way into Hunny Hill and the top end of Hunny Hill need to be narrowed to slow down the speed of traffic so as to make it as safe as possible for cyclists and pedestrians.
* At the bus stop in Parkhurst Road a bike lane needs to go around the rear of the bus stop so cyclists do not conflict with people waiting for buses.
* Whitesmith Road and Dodnor Lane need to have continuous footways to allow easy use of the paths to the bus stops.
* The Island in the middle of Medina Way, opposite the hospital, should be enlarged and the design should be that users can walk/ride in a straight line.
* The path to the Underpass in Hunny Hill should be made wider to make the approach easier. The barriers should be removed or at the very least the distance be increased between them to allow ease of access.
The AGM was an excellent night. Over 60 people attended. It was fantastic that we gained 6 new members on the evening. There was a wonderful atmosphere in the room. It was topped off by a really interesting presentation by Tim Wiggins talking about his cycling adventures. Tim Thorne presented CycleWight's Cycling Strategy for the Isle of Wight to Councillor Hobart, who is the Cabinet member for the environment.
The Cycle Strategy is now ready. It is hoped that this will become an important document in establishing proper provision for cycling across the Island. It also highlights a series of strategic routes which would bring the Island together.
It is hoped to update it in 2019 when we hope be able to develop more detailed information on the strategic routes. The Strategy includes section on Improving the Cycle Network, Safer Cycling and Cycle Promotion. It has a series of principles, which we hope all organisations on the Island will work towards.
If you think there is someone who would like a copy please forward it to them or let us know through the "Contact Us" section on this web site.
Paper copies are available, though there will have to be a charge of £2 including postage.
Two members of the CycleWight committee bit the bullet and got up early to do a cycle survey at the junction of Quay Street and Sea Street in Newport. As most of you will know this is where National Cycle Network Routes 22/23 cross and is a very busy commuter route. From 06.30 to 09.00 113 cyclists passed the spot. As we thought and now know that there are a lots of cycle commuters out there. It was a cold and foggy November morning which makes the figures even more impressive. The two most popular routes were from Seaclose onto Sea Street and from County Hall, using the cross Newport route, onto Sea Street.
We will endeavour to keep the survey going on a regular basis. Anyone fancy helping please do get in contact.
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.
Cycling and Walking Paper
Just before Christmas Bob Seely asked for a paper to be written on improving cycling and walking on the Island. Natural Enterprise led the work with assistance from other groups, including CycleWight. It was delivered within a two weeks timeframe. Mr Seely passed it on Jesse Norman, the minister responsible for Roads and Local Transport. Lets us hope that at some future date that this will help attract additional funds for cycling and walking. What could have been achieved with £9 million?
The Rights of Way team have created a map of the local Rights of Way on the Island. If you click on Map Features it will give you the key. It is often very confusing to know what path is what designation. This solves the problem. The map not only highlights the Rights of Way but paths which are made accessible by the land owner. (Permissive) It should be remembered that footpaths are not open to use for cycles.
This is a great map to be able to see the possibilities of making a comprehensive bridle way network for the Island.
All cyclists need to report any defects in road surfaces. The CYCLEWight committee suggest that you use the
"Fill that hole" campaign on the Cycling UK website to report dangerous road conditions. There is also an "App" available for IOS and Android smartphones that uses GPS to tag the location of the pothole or defect, plus it knows where you are and will send the report to the closest Council authority. Visit the Pothole reporting site HERE