This is an archive of the Wivenhoe Forum hyperlocal community messageboard. It ran from 2010-2020.

This archive will be permanently deleted on 31st December 2021.

Posting is disabled.

Cycle path

Can anyone tell me what is happening with the promised cycle path to the uni and where it will be going.


  • The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Rather than a white line, they should have a kerbing to seperate the pedestrian and cycle paths like the below...


  • @Shauny how's your company when it comes to completely realigning a road? This job is a bit more advanced than your average cycle path, which I guess is why the cost is higher than usual.

    @Mottza You're right, that's the correct way to do it - however that takes up twice the space as a shared use path, and then you need another way of separating whichever side of that is next to the road. Hence councils opting for the 'easy' option of slapping some paint on a pavement.

  • The user and all related content has been deleted.
  • Many thanks
  • I thought bells were mandatory when a bicycle is sold.
  • Bells not mandatory - I could have assumed that based on my experience. That must be the reason that most cyclists play "whispering death" on the trail as there is no legal requirement to have a bell. Thank goodness eh - those bikes are expensive enough without having to fork out an extra couple of quid for a bell.

    I haven't had anyone complain about me sounding my bell yet (even though it was only a cheap 50p one from Tesco) and some even say thanks for the novelty of getting a warning; particularly those with dogs. Maybe they should make up badges for righteous cyclists like me who "slow down for dogs and their owners", as well as horses and other shared users of any byway ;-)

    I must admit I never bothered to find out who has "right of way" on the trail as I think as long as common sense and due consideration prevails everyone should be safe and friendly.

    But I should also mitigate my point by admitting that I am possibly in a minority think most of the laws of this continent are a complete ass, made up by hopelessly pedantic groups of bureaucrats who treat the rest of us as morons who can't think for ourselves or consider others as a matter of course.
  • edited March 2015
    @Mottza No. It used to be a legal requirement that bicycles were sold with a bell when new in a shop, but not anymore.

    Bicyclists can't be nicked for speeding either, but can be written up for cycling "Furiously"
  • edited January 2015
    M25 and M4 in a bar having a drink, suddenly the door opens and a thin weedy strip of tarmac walks in, leans against the bar and orders a drink. The M25 whispers to the M4 "move over a bit, we need to stay away from him". The M4 is a bit confused and whispers "why ? We are the two biggest motorways in the uk, why do we have to stay away from him?". M25 whispers "because he's a cyclepath".

    blatently ripped from a radio4 comedy, made my young boys cry with laughter :)

  • @greenback You'd be right there! I meant more that i've encountered people who don't control their dogs when they see me coming toward them, and are surprised when their dog causes issues. In the same way that some people on bikes don't slow down or pass people in a courteous manner and are surprised when others take issue! As an aside, bells aren't mandatory in this country, but lights are after dark (and frankly if anyone is cycling without lights at night then they've got a death wish).

    My point was more a general one about everyone having to make compromises when they're sharing a space, as people do tend to get bogged down in specific examples when talking about shared use paths and roads.
  • Just interested I thought it was illegal not to have a bell or warning device and lights on a bike. Sorry Mike I thought the trail was for walkers with pemissive use of cycles because keeping a dog on the lead if the walker doesn't know a bike is behind them is also dangerous particularly if is one of the long leads. If you are talking about the new cycle, walking path I hope no one has their dog off the lead there. Anyone got an adult bike with stabilizers?
  • Thanks Mike. I am right there with you in spirit. Will read the article with great interest.
  • edited March 2015
    @greenback Many dog walkers don't keep their pooches on leads so they run into those super exciting shiny spinning things attached to my bicycle. My point being that all users need to be courteous to one another for it to work.

    And as @Arkle says, bells won't always help - everyone needs to look out for each other. If you're driving your car on the road you can't just drive straight across a roundabout and use the excuse that you were listening to music! The same applies to shared use paths too.

    @Glyn "How many people are likely to change their behaviour?" - How committed are we to change?

    30 years ago Denmark and the Netherlands found themselves in a similar position to the one Britain is in now. The roads were so full of traffic that they had become dangerous for pedestrians and cyclists alike. There were protests, and the governments listened. It wasn't a popular thing to do, but it was the right thing to do. They embarked on a massive programme of infrastructure improvement, the upshot of which is the world-leading example they now set. This was only possible because those in charge chose to invest in the future, rather than investing in their next election campaign.
    There are two ways of encouraging people to change their behaviour: make the current option less appealing, and make the alternative more appealing. As you can see, the two are linked so closely that one isn't possible without the other. The reason I (and others) keep going on about how it is pointless to provide a sub-par facility is because it doesn't make it any more appealing to use it, and there is no effort to make driving any less appealing!
    I can go on and on about how investing in sustainable infrastructure (cycling/walking/public transport) provides a net financial gain if you want, but I imagine i've said enough for now.
    If you're going to do things, do it right, and invest for the future.

    Here's an extremely good article that I thoroughly recommend reading:

  • Also consider those who are deaf or students listening to music through ear pieces. A bell would not help here.
  • Many of the cyclists using the trail do not have bells.. I posted a long time ago about a partially sighted young woman who had difficulty knowing which side to move when a bike came up to her on the trail. She said a bell would be very helpful as she could loate the sound.
  • Totally agree with the last two posts, but @Mike_, realistically, how many people are likely to change their behaviour...?
  • While the route remains just dangerous then why would anyone change their behaviour?
    @Glyn, now that is what we call a cycular argument.

    (apologies- I blame the remaindered misprint library)
  • Pedestrians and cyclists can share routes such as the Wivenhoe Trail but it would be helpful on the Trail if cyclists were to use their bells more.  If you are walking along talking to someone then it is not obvious that there is a cyclist behind you.  Maybe people think it is rude to use a bell but I would rather be alerted than be knocked over or alternatively knocking someone off their bike by stepping sideways into their path.
  • "but only for the people who choose to change their behaviour and use their bike" @glyn

    Surely people are more likely to change their behaviour if the alternatives look more appealing?
  • edited March 2015
    Whether or not you should spend £750k should depend on the Benefit:Cost ratio. The average for UK bike infrastructure is about 6:1 - for every pound you spend you can expect £6 back in benefits. There's plenty of reason to think that investing in good bike infrastructure is worthwhile. Even in Wivenhoe. To put that in perspective the Department for Transport regards a ratio 4:1 for any transport project to be 'very high' and, in their words, 'most if not all' such projects should be given the go-ahead.

    It's the value proposition that should be questioned, not the amounts. £750k well spent is £750k well spent. £750k spent badly is money wasted. A good cycle path will be a benefit for decades to come, a bad one won't be.
  • I've just read the government's Value for Money Assessment for Cycling Grants from August, 2014, from the idiot-proof Google steer you gave me, thanks Jay.

    I know this is only my opinion and I don't mean to cause offence, but it looks like the biggest load of codswallop I have read in a long time. "Monetising" benefits like Journey Ambience? You have to be joking!

    60% of the benefit is in increased physical fitness...

    ...but only for the people who choose to change their behaviour and use their bike!  

    Don't get me wrong; I think less use of cars and more use of manpower in getting around is a good thing. I am reminded every time the kids get dropped off to the local school when their parents park outside my home. I see the same cars in the estate; many within a 10-minute walk.

    If you can provide me with a prospectus for such a project which has convinced a private investor that it is a worthwhile project, I'll eat your hat.

  • Civility and a bit of common. I'd go with that if it was my budget.

    On the other hand, you could spend £750k and make it idiot-proof.

    Welcome to Wivenhoe. Tenez à gauche, mostly...

  • edited March 2015
    It'd work just fine with low volumes of foot and bike traffic ~ especially if there are good alternate routes (there aren't here) for vulnerable user groups. It's less likely to work on a busier commuter route.

    As long as few use it and they don't mind taking it slow, it'll be fine. It'll be nice on Sundays. If  more than a few use it to get to work or lectures it could suck for both pedestrians and cyclists.

    I get what you're saying pitfall, but civility really has got nothing to do with it. It's a commuter route at least twice a day, every week day - and and the infrastructure has to be suitable for the kind of journeys that people are going to want to make. Putting in inappropriate infrastructure and then blaming bad results on a lack of civility of the users doesn't cut it. The problem is bad design, not bad users.

    Some background: There's a thing called the Shared Use Operational Review (Atkins 2012) that looked at the difference between two otherwise similar shared cycle/foot paths: one with a white line down the middle that separated walking and cycling into their own narrow space and another without - pedestrians and bicycles were allowed to roam the pavement free range. The outcome was that there were fewer conflicts on the path without. Local Authorities have been bouncing up and down with excitement ever since, because as long as you ignore all the caveats (included in the review when you bother to read the thing) about how it won't work for commuters or busy routes, the need for alternate 'quiet' routes for vulnerable users and so on, it appears to solve a bunch of tricky problems and tick multiple boxes with minimal thought, spend and effort.

    When all you've got is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Expect shared use paths without lines everywhere.

    ECC are even planning to rearrange North Station in Colchester - taking away the separate cycle lanes and putting walking and cycling in both directions and two (count 'em) bus stops all on a single shared pavement. All made possible with the newly discoverd miracle of how well shared paths work (except when they don't) if you don't paint a line down the middle.

    I'm increasingly of the mind that they just don't get it.

  • It does work on the Wivenhoe Trail - it just depends on the civility of the people involved.
  • But pedestrians and cyclists are not comparable!!!! It didn't work on the trail by the river, why should it work on a main road?

  • edited February 2015
    hedges plural.

    Yes, it's that option. Both sides are affected.

    tbh all options were bad news for the existing hedges - they might superficially have 'looked' much the same with the other options that retained them, but running tarmac and traffic up both sides of your hedgerow might not be what the birdlings and beasticles would vote for. That would be a lot of passing disturbance and a lot of physical separation from your surrounding habitats..

    On the upside, these days Local Authorities are quite good at planting fairly decent mixed native species hedgerows - so the replacements shouldn't be a disaster.

  • Not only that, Pete, but there is also the possibility of an option B which involves two crossings to avoid the oak trees if they have bats in them.

    Seems to me this should have been surveyed previously.

    It also seems extremely unreasonable that Bass has said there will be no more consultation on this plan B if it goes ahead, and he will not be showing anyone.

    -a dogs dinner as usual then.
  • Oh oh that really is the worst of all the options – unsafe for both cyclists and pedestrians in that particular location, and is it the option that requires re-alignment of the road and uprooting the hedge and so on?
Sign In or Register to comment.