Position statement – Newcastle Cycling Forum

Since Newcycling’s inception in 2010* we have been involved with Newcastle’s Cycling Forum. We have sought to contribute to it meaningfully and methodically, staying true to our organisational aims, policies and membership view: always with the focus to improve cycling conditions in and around Newcastle. Over the years we also commented on the forum’s effectiveness (governance, decision-making process, information flow, community engagement tool, wider role and general administration). It is our disappointment with that aspect that led us to the decision to cancel our regular forum attendance. In the meantime we will use other – more successful and less frustrated – communication routes to improve the lot for cycling in Newcastle.

We have informed the Newcastle Cycling Forum chair, Cllr Marion Talbot, today:

We discussed the benefits of attending the Newcastle Cycling Forum at our last Committee meeting 26 August 2014, concluding that we will only consider attending when specifically invited
– to give a presentation to the Forum
– when the council asks for our feedback on a specific agenda item

To discuss our involvement, please get in touch with us in advance of meetings.

Of course, we want to help shape the agenda for the benefit of cycling in Newcastle. At present, however, we feel the Forum with its current governance does not meet this goal, and is not run in a way which allows community groups like ours to influence decision-making. Volunteer time is precious and we must use our resources intelligently.

The Newcycling Committee

* a couple of Committee members even before the existence of Newcycling, not to forget the Safe Cycling in Newcastle petition resurrected the forum