Jesmond cycle chat with council – press release

24.06.2012 PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

On Wednesday locals came flocking to the Cricket Club to discuss getting around safely in Jesmond, walking and cycling. The bike racks were parked up with thirty local people attending and keen to make their view heard.

Tony Waterston, Transition Jesmond, set the scene “Jesmond is ideal cycling territory but at present there is heavy traffic and no safe spaces for cyclists. So few children cycle to school, few ladies cycle to the shops and not many older gents cycle to work. We plan to change this.

“We in Transition Jesmond are campaigning for action now to tackle climate change in this beautiful community. One big step will be to make Jesmond cycle friendly. This will require cycleways on Osborne Road, safe cycle crossings at key junctions, and traffic calming measures to slow down drivers. Bad for the economy? No – more people cycling and walking will boost the economy, and make the streets fit for people – with less congestion, less pollution and reduced road dangers. This will be good for everyone.”

Katja Leyendecker of the Newcastle Cycling Campaign who also attended the meeting summarises “It’s amazing and humbling to see so many local people shouting out for calmer streets, better cycleways and more space for people on foot and bike alike. I thank Jesmond Transition and the local Councillors who pulled this together and inviting everyone to embark on this transformation. Even if I’d have liked to see the council take a more proactive role still, I think we are on a safe path to a liveable Jesmond. It’d be most fantastic if we could tame Tankerville Terrace. Osborne Road – not surprisingly – with its fast speed and bad crossing points was also a big discussion point.”

The Campaign’s own Claire Prospert, also present at the meeting, has recently been to the Dutch towns of Assen and Groningen to scout cycling provision there. She has returned to the city with fresh new ideas such as intelligent cycle-friendly traffic lights and elephants footprints that guide cyclists across an intersection providing continuity and clarity, which could be used on Jesmond’s Osborne Road to improve the cycling experience there http://www.flickr.com/photos/claireprospert/7347556534/ – it’s probably worth adding that Groningen is not just a cycling paradise but Newcastle’s Dutch twin city.

Following the public meeting the group will now consolidate their report and recommendations before handing over to the council for action.

Contact Katja Leyendecker || 07828 60 4349 || newcastle.cycling.campaign@gmail.com

Claire’s blog on her cycle scouting experience http://www.cycling-embassy.org.uk/blog/2012/06/21/love-netherlands-go-newcastle
Photo of meeting http://www.flickr.com/photos/katsdekker/7418404322/in/photostream
Previous press releases http://newcycling.org/press-releases