Isle of Wight Cycle Forum Minutes
21 October 2014 @ 6pm
Isle of Wight Fire & Rescue Service HQ, Newport.
Will Ainslie (WA) IWC LSTF Project Manager
Alec Broome (AB) IWC Sports Unit
Mark Breakey (MB) Steve Porter Transport & RHA
Diz Dyer (DD)
David Kitching (DK) VRCC member
Robin Lang (RL) National Trust Manager
Alex Lawson (AL) Cyclewight & Wayfarers
Val Lawson (VGL) Cyclewight & Wayfarers
John Lee (JL)
Andy Newman (AN) Wayfarers & CTC
Tom Ransom (TR) Visit Wight Project Manager
Tanja Rebel (TRE)
Tim Thorne (TT) Cyclewight Chairman
Tracey Webb (TW) Road Safety: IWF&R
Mari-Louise White (MLW) IWC Events
Bob White (RW)
Apologies were received from Jennine Gardiner, Nick Farthing, Steve Goodman, Alexander & Margaret
Hopkinson-Woolley, Martin Gibson, Margaret Young, Tricia Merrifield, Police Sergeant Dave Sanderson,
& Wendy Perera.
2. Local Sustainable Transport Fund
Will Ainslie said the Wroxall-Shanklin route had been completed, except for multi-use signs yet to be
installed. Photos of the opening were in County Press and those present included children, equestrians,
cyclists, ramblers and a disabled carriage user. On the Newport to Ryde route the Quarr section had
been resurfaced. At Spencer Road end of route the worst 150m has been surfaced but there is an
ongoing debate with owners there about the rest. The Rights of Way network is being assessed and
questionnaires are being circulated regarding use of the planned route, as access agreement to Ladies
Walk is yet to be reached.
WA commented that the route improvements have been generally welcomed. However there were some
adverse comments regarding cyclist behaviour, and this perception makes it more difficult to promote the
At Lakeside, Wootton, there is verbal agreement regarding the piece of land by the main road which
allows access to the footway which will become shared use as far as Firestone Copse Road.
The Newport to Island Harbour route is currently being constructed and photos are available. It is
designed for mixed use but not intended for the likes of racing bikes.
The Red Squirrel Trail will run from Cowes to Sandown & will include the Sunshine Trail (which will lose
that name). Signage will be the national standard blue & white, and 20 signs are on order. Alex Broome
added that waymarkers are planned for the Chalk Ridge Extreme Trail.
There was some discussion about the quality of work carried out by Island Roads. There is no
engineering oversight by IWC so they have to be trusted. However it is convenient that they can carry
out work without a procurement process.
Robin Lang asked about the Chalk Ridge Extreme route? AB described the route which from Newport
takes in Shide, Havenstreet, Alverstone, Queens Bower, Sandown, Wroxall, Niton, Hoy Monument,
Shorewell, Cheverton Farm, Freshwater and Yarmouth. Where possible it is off-road with linking
sections by road. It is downloadable via the website:
One part of this network is the newly constructed bridleway at Mottistone. This was achieved through the
efforts of Robin Lang, manager of the National Trust which authorised & funded the scheme, together
with Tricia Merrifield of the Equestrian Society which financed gates on the route.
3. LSTF2: It’s all about the Journey- Transforming travel on the Isle of Wight
The IWC bid for a second phase of Local Sustainable Transport Fund has been approved. Funding is
nearly £1million and commencement April 2015. The proposals cover 1. Journeys to school. 2. Journeys
to work. 3. Tourism. The drive less theme is continued by encouraging these groups to leave their cars
at home. Those with responsibility are Tourism, David Thornton, Education, Lee Matthews and Chamber
of Commerce, journey to work.
For IW Fire & Rescue, Tracey Webb has met Lee Matthews. They will be offered £20,000 funding to
provide further cycle training, although details have yet to be decided. It was commented that as well as
school age training, adult training was sought after and should become an important component in the
future. TT said the owner of Wight Cycle Hire takes customers for a training ride and they were willing to
pay for this service. He added that bike design and safety has improved considerably on the last 10-15
years. TW agreed and said retired people are now looking to take up cycling.
MW said that IWC pay to train HGV drivers on the cycling awareness. MB confirmed this and added that
drivers are themselves often cyclists.
TR said some further funding towards tourism will provide travel ambassadors on ferries. AB added that
schools can apply for cash for training and for improving routes to school.
4. Improve Image of Cycling
TT asked for suggestions towards improving the image of cycling, and said this would make it easier for
WA to achieve improved cycling links.
Cowes Town Council have been concerned about cyclists in the High Street. Meetings by Councillors
with Police & Island Roads are considering a way forward. They are considering a new route proposed
by VGL which would be better for cyclists than the existing round the Island route via Victoria Road, and
which might lead to cyclists using it legitimately instead of the high Street. TR said there should be a
green lane down the centre of the High Street for bicycles. AL said that outside 10am to 6pm the High
Street remained a highway in the easterly direction for cars and access vehicles, and could not be
dedicated to cycling while this was so.
David Kitching raised the issue of cycle track maintenance by Island Roads. He said tracks which should
be up to 8 feet width were sometimes down to 3 feet. He thought verges should be trimmed 3 times per
year rather than once. He had seen contractors blowing leaves back, which seemed rather pointless.
TW said someone could be injured due to dangerous situations: she has had phone calls raising this.
We need to find out what is the contract with Island Roads & ask if it is being met. WA would like a
liaison group with Island Roads. The communication channel should be better and we should find out
who is contact responsible. AL suggested that the Cycle Forum should establish with IWC and Island
Roads who to contact over maintenance and safety, and should write to invite them to the next forum
meeting. Action TT/AL
Bob White said from his experience with other local authorities that they are risk averse and will act if
something is brought to their attention. Official channels need to be in place for this to be so. Once
Councillors feel empowered by the approaches of cycling groups then things will happen.
5. Road Safety
TW said IWF&R had applied for funding which was turned down. As the total funding available across
the country was not large this was unsurprising and they would apply again in the future.
Dizz Dyer said he had met with PC David Sanderson and discussed the safety of cyclists. In his view
(DD) as a cyclist and Advanced Motorist member it is sometimes necessary to break the letter of the law
to be safe e.g. the traffic lights at Shalfleet. He said that PC Sanderson indicated they would enforce the
law nevertheless. DD added that no one educates car drivers, the most dangerous thing he faces on the
road. There are posters on lorries dispensing advice to cyclists but there are no posters giving advice to
drivers regarding cyclists.
MB responded that there are stickers inside cabs promoting care with cyclists, and many lorry drivers
themselves use push bikes. He added that buses could & should have these notices also. DD said that it
is the general public who are the worst offenders. AB said he found taxi drivers are the worst. TW said
one person, driver or cyclist, can give everyone a bad name – she hears complaints every day. TR said
nobody is at fault & a rebellion is needed.
More discussion took place re HGV driver training for Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC),
which has a cycle awareness component, optional but which can be made compulsory by the employer.
BW defended the driving of most motorists and said the cycle injury statistics should be studied for
evidence. DD disagreed with this view of motorists; however TW said the perception of danger may not
be backed up by the statistics.
6. Visit Wight
Tom Ransom circulated data for the Visit Isle of Wight – webpage, April-August. Graphs compared
different sections of the site & showed that Bicycle Island hits reached 6000 in July following the £36k
June & July advertising campaign. http://www.visitisleofwight.co.uk/bicycle-island
Ferry data showed actual visits doubled in July compared to the previous year. Running totals for 2014
are 24,814 people spending £2,906,858 (not including all day trips). Now spend is at least £3.2 million
including day trips.
MLW said the events team need more literature to hand out at cycle shows. The Round the Island maps
are ideal but the £4.99 map is too costly to hand out free. TT said 10,000 Round the Island maps were
printed and distribution to bikeshops & tourist points, with about 4000 left at the moment. This was
arranged by Cyclewight and funded by the LSTF fund.
7. Cycling festival - IWC Events
Mari-Louise White said the 2014 Cycle Festival had amazing weather and was a success with more
people attending. AB said the IW leg of the Wessex Cyclo-Cross competition with various age categories
was attended by 110 which was good. Cycle the Wight attracted most participants from the mainland,
and led to lots of publicity.
The 2015 date is yet to be decided as the Bestival date has been set a week later (12 September?) and
would conflict. She wants to avoid October as the weather is reliably wet. Alternatively it could be spread
over all of September but avoiding the Bestival weekend. Or it could be spread over a longer period of
the summer. She also wants more family friendly events – a request from leaders. TW said it is desirable
to have the festival during school holidays. AB said the 3 weekend period worked better than 2
weekends, but thought that the impact would be less if spread over the summer.
Tanja Rebel thanked the events team for organising the Carbon Cycle Celebration. She noted the name
was suggested by David Green.
John Lee said the Cyclo-Cross event was excellent, but there was a gap for more competitive events
such as time trials. MLW said the cost of closing the road, even for an hour, was prohibitive.
It was noted that the future of IWC employees is a bit unsecured.
# Cycle Tracks: TW noted that the roads PFI contract was written by people who now work for Island
Roads. This means that no-one working for the IWC now understands the contract. BW pointed out that
councils determine planning approval which determines what goes ahead. WA noted that planning
approval for schemes like solar farms can be made subject to 106 funding.
9. Date of next meeting
…......…... February 2015, 1800, Isle of Wight Fire & Rescue Service HQ
A.Lawson (minutes) firstname.lastname@example.org
T.Thorne (Cyclewight) email@example.com
A.Newman (Wayfarers) ANewman850@aol.com 2014-10-21_Cycle_Forum_Minutes Page 4