Prom wars: Councillors agree to one-year trial of letting Lllandudno cyclists ride along prom

Councillor acknowledges there are risks but adds, "you have risks if you put a car on the road..."

by Simon_MacMichael   February 15, 2012  

Llandudno Promenade.jpg

Cyclists in Llandudno, North Wales, are to be allowed to ride on the seaside town’s promenade after Conwy councillors voted six to two to undertake a one-year trial of lifting restrictions.

The news, reported by the BBC, follows a sustained and long-running campaign by Sustrans Cymru, as previously highlighted here on road.cc where the ongoing saga regularly pops up at around this time of year.

The difference this time around is that cyclists have something to celebrate.

"It's sheer relief that common sense has prevailed," said CTC Cymru’s Roy Spilsbury, adding, “Cyclists now won't have to go along the main parade battling with the busy road."

According to the sustainable transport charity, bicycles are permitted on some 125 seaside promenades throughout the UK, making Llandudno, which has had a promenade since around 1876, very much the exception.

The one-year trial was approved last week by a task and finish group chaired by Councillor Christine Jones, who said, “Yes, we think there probably will be risks but the risks are minimal.

"You have risks if you put a car on the road and as a consequence of this we have decided to go forward," she added.

The BBC said that warning signs and CCTV would be deployed to help ensure safety.

However, John Lawson Rea of the Llandudno Civic Trust, reinforced his opposition to letting cyclists use the promenade.

"Bicycles and pedestrians don't mix," he maintained. "We don't allow them on the pavements in towns and cities. It applies exactly the same on the promenade.

"The reality of it is that people want to walk along a promenade in safety with their kids and their dogs," he added.

Ahead of the ban being lifted, Dr Neil Mackenzie of the Llandudno for Safe Cycling group had told the North Wales Weekly News: “This common sense solution will put an end to pensioners, families with young children, and tourist cyclists being embarrassed by being shouted at to dismount when they approach the cenotaph area.

“Although cyclists with common sense will dismount when this area is busy, not every cyclist has the appropriate level of experience or courtesy,” he continued.

“We would be dismayed if, during the trial period, an accident involving a cyclist and pedestrian in this area resulted in the whole prom being closed to cyclists, when in practice it is just one area which needs to be addressed. Prevention is better than cure.

“We hope the communities overview and scrutiny committee will accept the task and finish group’s recommendations as we are confident that it will enhance Llandudno’s tourist trade by providing an additional leisure facility,” he added.

“It will also contribute to a healthy lifestyle for young and old, and will improve the town’s image as a green environmentally friendly low carbon town.”

11 user comments

Oldest firstNewest firstBest rated

Why use a picture showing about 10 people on the prom thats been taken out of season?

http://threetownsforum.co.uk/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=7.0;a...

Oh, and hello all. Not posted for a while Smile

jobysp's picture

posted by jobysp [145 posts]
15th February 2012 - 10:46

like this
Like (0)

Not knowing LLandudno, when I first heard of this story a few years ago, I envisaged the promenade as being quite narrow, possibly like Brighton's or Southend's, so that some conflict might arise between cyclists and pedestrians.

Now I've seen the picture, and I realise it's nearly as wide as motorway. What on earth was all the fuss about? There's plenty of room for everyone.

Bloody Nimbys.

posted by JohnS [198 posts]
15th February 2012 - 10:52

like this
Like (0)

Warning signs and CCTV Rolling Eyes . OMFG.

Just stick a broad white line of paint on the promenade, with Bike symbols on one side, and Pedestrian symbols on the other. Like what we have in the Meadows in Edindburgh.

Cheap and effective.

neildmoss's picture

posted by neildmoss [156 posts]
15th February 2012 - 11:11

like this
Like (0)

jobysp wrote:
Why use a picture showing about 10 people on the prom thats been taken out of season?

http://threetownsforum.co.uk/forum/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=7.0;a...

Oh, and hello all. Not posted for a while Smile

hello Smile

if that's as busy as it gets it's hardly nose to tail, is it?

Dave Atkinson's picture

posted by Dave Atkinson [7036 posts]
15th February 2012 - 11:28

like this
Like (0)

What Llandudno needs is to embrace the fantastic NR5 and use its roads / prom to join it properly for cyclists.

Saying that I've never had any problems with cycling up and down the road running parrallel to the prom and I've done it often enough as it leads up to the Great Orme.

Its a big positive step for Llandudno but those old people are gonna be scared!

Still think you should have used a better photo Big Grin

jobysp's picture

posted by jobysp [145 posts]
15th February 2012 - 11:39

like this
Like (0)

neildmoss wrote:

Just stick a broad white line of paint on the promenade, with Bike symbols on one side, and Pedestrian symbols on the other. Like what we have in the Meadows in Edindburgh.

Cheap and effective.

I can't say how it works in Edinburgh, but in my experience whenever I've encountered them those bike/pedestrian markings are a waste of paint. People take no notice, walk down both 'sides' and then seem a bit put out to encounter bikes on the bike side.

posted by Chuck [294 posts]
15th February 2012 - 12:19

like this
Like (1)

Great to hear from you again joby! Out of season pic… hmm not judging by all those very green looking trees, more like the height of a typical Welsh summer I'd say Wink

Tony Farrelly's picture

posted by Tony Farrelly [4111 posts]
15th February 2012 - 13:22

like this
Like (1)

I know Llandudno quite well, it's a very popular seaside resort and the prom, despite being very wide and beautifully surfaced, can be very busy, particularly in the summer months.

I can imagine the issued faced by allowing people to cycle along the prom while still ensuring the safety of dog walkers, kids playing, the bus-loads of OAPs who fill the cheap rooms...

Perhaps the fear is that if they designate one part a bike lane there will be loads of people crossing or wandering into it. I have to wonder if a couple of inconsiderate cyclists may have not done the cause any favours. But the busy road alongside the promenade is lined with parked cars and coaches on both sides, making it narrow and risky for cyclists.

Edit: interestingly, the Street View images (from March 2009) show surprisingly few peds on the prom. The end near the pier is busiest, and foot traffic decreases as you progress eastwards.

Some history and perspective from local CTC:
http://www.cyclingnorthwales.co.uk/pages/llanpr_cycok.htm

Simon E's picture

posted by Simon E [1778 posts]
15th February 2012 - 14:06

like this
Like (0)

I've never found paint separation of pedestrians and cyclists to be effective: too many pedestrians ignore it. The only (mostly) successful separation I've seen involves split-level paths with a pedestrian pavement up a curb, which would be impractical here.

posted by HKCambridge [74 posts]
15th February 2012 - 15:09

like this
Like (0)

HKCambridge wrote:
I've never found paint separation of pedestrians and cyclists to be effective: too many pedestrians ignore it. The only (mostly) successful separation I've seen involves split-level paths with a pedestrian pavement up a curb, which would be impractical here.
+ 1 Like the Millenium bridge between Gateshead and Newcastle? It was meant to be one side cyclists, and the other pedestrians. Never happened, the cycle side was changed to dual use by a frustrated local authority unable to stop pedestrians straying onto the cycle side despite the presence of officials during the first week of opening.

onward ever onward

bikecellar's picture

posted by bikecellar [221 posts]
15th February 2012 - 17:47

like this
Like (0)

neildmoss wrote:
Warning signs and CCTV Rolling Eyes . OMFG.

Just stick a broad white line of paint on the promenade, with Bike symbols on one side, and Pedestrian symbols on the other. Like what we have in the Meadows in Edindburgh.

Cheap and effective.

I agree with Neil. This works in Crosby even thought the prom is only the 12 foot wide. The only danger to pedestrians is if they wander onto the clearly marked cycle path and that isn't very common and despite what others say a quick friendly shout normally sorts the situation out. They try not to walk on the cycle oath and we try not to speed along it and cut our reaction time. It's a bit like the way roads should be...

Smile

MercuryOne

Silly me. You're probably right....

MercuryOne's picture

posted by MercuryOne [932 posts]
15th February 2012 - 23:43

like this
Like (0)