National bike bash in Newcastle

This weekend Newcastle Cycling Campaign will host the annual meeting of the Cycling Embassy of Great Britain. Cycling the city on the proposed Strategic Cycle Routes as well as chatting campaigning strategy will all be included in the packed two-day agenda [link below]. City cycling gets serious – making cycling as easy as riding a bicycle.

There is much talk about cycling, nationally and locally, yet translating into little action, especially outside London. The serious money to adapt our towns and cities, roads and streets, has not been made available. The design expertise and creativity is also in its infancy in civil servants, engineers, planners and consultants. The third missing ingredient for the ‘cities fit for people revolution’ is of course political will and power to make all that happen.

The Cycling Embassy of Great Britain seeks to reverse these omissions and put cycling infrastructure at the heart of the national transportation agendas. Since its inception in 2011 it has successfully used all forms of engagement – particularly social media – to rattle cages of the status quo and establishment, and direct focus and spotlight on physical infrastructure adaptation of urban space. It has managed to attract attention to the UK’s lack of infrastructure per se, and provided design ideas from international cycling countries. The Embassy very quickly turned into a well-trusted voice and resource in the cycle campaigning world for their knowledge, cutting-edge views and evidence-based argumentations.

Mark Treasure, Cycling Embassy of Great Britain “The weekend in Newcastle promises to be a great opportunity to shape the Embassy for the future. Cycling campaigning in the UK is undergoing a revolution and the Embassy has been at the forefront of that – we need to make sure we stay that way”.

Katja Leyendecker, Newcastle Cycling Campaign “This is an important weekend for cycle campaigners, Newcastle and beyond – we are so glad to host. Talking tactics could not have come at a better time – when Councillors disparity is holding back Newcastle to design for people and make our roads and streets safe for parents to let their children cycle to school – and even take up everyday cycling themselves. For the future’s sake of our cities, they have to get serious about making Newcastle a place for people, not cars – there simply isn’t the space. We are standing by to hear from them. They are all invited of course!

“What’s needed? For their inspiration we’ve recently created various cycle-friendly streetscapes – transforming our car-dominated spaces by using design details from other cities – we are waiting to hear from the council. Calling cycle-friendly designs “unworkable” simply won’t do.”

Agenda http://www.cycling-embassy.org.uk/node/2618

Great North Road – roadscape impression : Maybe the £1.3m Cycle Safety Fund could be used to create some cycle space so that kids can safely cycle to the various schools on Great North North? A kerb-protected cycle route on both sides of the busy aggressive 30mph road (even 40mph north of Broadway!) would do just that.
More here http://newcycling.org/news/20130524/gosforth-and-gnr
Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/katsdekker/8801556537/

John Dobson Street – roadscape impression : Cyclists have complained about a lack of North-South permeability of the city centre for years. The debate on the Northumberland Street bike ban is rumbling on and Percy Street having recently been turned into a highway – that viably leaves John Dobson Street for a cycle-friendly makeover. Could a two-way cycle track – common feature in the Netherlands and Denmark – be build there?
More here http://newcycling.org/news/20130524/messing-around-city-centre
Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/katsdekker/8817437734/

Katja Leyendecker 07828 60 4349
E Mail newcastle.cycling.campaign@gmail.com