County council insists cyclist safety not compromised, but local campaign group Pedals disagrees

Nottingham-based cycle campaign group Pedals has set up an online petition to protest at the removal without consultation of two cycle lanes in the West Bridgford district of the East Midlands city.

The two lanes, at Musters Road and the junction of Rectory Road and Melton Road were removed by Nottinghamshire County Council at a reported cost of £10,000.
Pedals has also issued a challenge to Richard Jackson, Nottinghamshire County Council member for transport and highways, to ride through the junction himself at rush hour so he can see for himself the effect of the removal of the cycle lanes.

According to the website This Is Nottingham, Councillor Jackson will do just that, and he insists that the council’s actions have not compromised the safety of cyclists.

"The point is, we have made the alterations and we wouldn't do something which made the roads unsafe,” he maintained.

"Twenty-one thousands cars pass through that junction every day, compared with 375 bikes, and the changes we've made reduce congestion by 16 per cent in the morning and 12 per cent in the evening.

"I accept it's less convenient, but it's not less safe," he added.

However, local borough councillor Rod Jones disagrees, saying: "The county council have chosen the motorist over the cyclists once again," an opinion echoed by High McClintock from Pedals.

He said: "These changes have not only removed two very good lengths of cycle lane, introduced in 2005, which have been of great benefit to northbound cyclists, but have also worsened general road safety,” explained Mr McClintock.

"Pedals is protesting because these unfair changes were introduced without any consultation.

"And at a time of great pressure on public spending and major spending cuts, this makes the allocation of £10,000 for this scheme even harder to justify.

He added: "Having obtained a copy of the county council officers' transport and highways portfolio report, it is also now clear that the decision to go ahead with these changes was taken against the advice of the county council's own officers."

The wording of the petition, which you can sign here, reads:

“We the undersigned strongly protest at Nottinghamshire County Council’s recent changes to the layout of the northbound section of Musters Road in the vicinity of the junctions with Melton Road and Rectory Road, West Bridgford. We agree strongly with the officer advice given to the Cabinet Member for Transport and Highways on 25th January 2011 that making these changes would reintroduce serious safety concerns which the previous layout was designed to prevent. In our view, the changes are potentially life-threatening particularly for cyclists wishing to continue along Rectory Road towards Tudor Square. We also note that the advice to the Cabinet Member included a warning on the potential for the changes to result in increased collisions caused by motor vehicles making last-minute decisions. We therefore call upon the County Council to restore much safer road layout arrangements, in the interests of general road safety and particularly to safeguard vulnerable road users.”

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.


cat1commuter [1422 posts] 6 years ago

I don't think the argument should be about safety. It should be about encouraging cycling, maybe at the inconvenience of some car traffic.

bikecellar [268 posts] 6 years ago

Perhap's Mr Jackson is one of those 21,000 motorist's?

wheelist [4 posts] 6 years ago

One of the pleasures of growing up in Nottingham was the great cyclng infrastructure - a legacy of the cycling heritage of the city I'm sure. We'd cycle into town as kids (all the way from Long Eaton) and home again, barely encountering traffic at all - it was probably this experience which has helped to make me a lifelong cyclist (I now run a bike shop). The Cabinet Member for Transport and Highways needs to realise that every pro-car decision simply increases car use and therefore congestion - it's a backward step, pure and simple. Time for a rethink. Keep up the good work and the pressure Pedals.