Symposium in London this Friday explores how Danish cycling experience can translate to UK

Event brings together speakers including the men responsible for traffic in London and Copehagen

by Simon_MacMichael   November 25, 2012  

Copenhagen Cyclists1.jpg

A free symposium taking place in London this Friday will explore how the Danes have managed to encourage cycling over the past four decades and what lessons from Copenhagen can be applied to London to ensure that more journeys are made by bike.

The symposium, which takes place at the Covent Garden premises of New London Architecture, brings together speakers including Ben Plowden, director of surface transport at Transport for London, and his counterpart in Copenhagen, Niels Tørsløv, director of traffic for the Danish capital’s council.

Mark Ames of the I Bike London blog will be among those hosting workshops as part of the event, which is called Living Suburbs - Getting to Copenhagen and is organised by the London Borough of Ealing in partnership with urban design and sustainability experts URBED and the TEN Group of senior local government officers in London.

The event’s page on the NLA website makes the observation that “Britain has long been the land of the railway and the car, with a deeply entrenched attitude that cycling is for either the poor or the fanatically fit,” before asking, “How much more liveable would London’s suburbs be if cycling were mainstream, as it is in Scandinavia and the Netherlands?

“A series of speakers, including Danish representatives, will share their experience with practitioners and policy makers in London and a number of workshops will compare approaches, and agree what action needs to be taken.”

Sponsors of the event include the Danish Embassy to the UK, and while attendance is free, registration is required, which you can do by following this link.

Recently, cycling experts from the Netherlands held a series of Love Cycling, Go Dutch conferences in the UK, visiting Bristol, Glasgow, London and Manchester to outline how urban planners there managed to achieve spectacular growth in cycling from the 1970s onwards, and how the Dutch experience could be translate to the UK. A report on the Manchester session is on the British Cycling website.

Living Suburbs: Getting to Copenhagen
NLA, The Building Centre, 26 Store Street, London WC!E 7BT

Friday 30 November, 0900-1300, registration open from 0830

3 user comments

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Could it be anything to do with the fact that the Danes are generally a progressive, intelligent people whereas as the Brits can be a very smallminded, short termist people ..

Me, Myself and I

posted by phax71 [321 posts]
26th November 2012 - 10:43


phax71 wrote:
Could it be anything to do with the fact that the Danes are generally a progressive, intelligent people whereas as the Brits can be a very smallminded, short termist people ..

Yes of course - that must be why the extreme right parties over there are considerably larger and more powerful than our own pitiful pretenders like the BNP Confused

There's a plethora of reasoning which covers local/national governance structure and policy decisions dating over 40+ years - there are no short/succinct explanations.

I'm glad that the Danes are getting involved like this as they do not have the 'total segregation' approach like the Dutch, so the kinds of measures they have in place are probably slightly more achievable from a UK city perspective.

G-bitch's picture

posted by G-bitch [316 posts]
26th November 2012 - 13:13


Well, we could translate it by killing off, say, 55 million people in the UK so we match the overall Danish population or get down to their population density of 130 per sq km against UK's 257. London would obviously need some disproportionate culling with its current 4760 per sq km, but hey, whatever's needed to make us Danes.

dullard's picture

posted by dullard [140 posts]
27th November 2012 - 14:59