Wolverhampton Cycle Forum

West Midlands Cycle Training Centre, Aldersley High School, Barnhurst Lane, Wolverhampton
Minutes of Meeting held on 21st July 2011 @ 6.00pm


Win Sutton Local Resident (Chair)
Ric Bravery (RAB) Wolverhampton City Council -Transportation
Pete Singer Local Resident
Marcus Asbury (MA) Wolverhampton City Council - Sports Development
David Wilson (DW) Wolves on Wheels/Sustrans
Bob Amer (BA) Local Resident
Beccy Marston (BM) Cyclists’ Touring Club Cycle Champion
Sarah Shepherd (SS) Wolverhampton City Council -Transportation

  1. Apologies

Jennifer Cromie (JC) Wolverhampton Resident
Tim Oldham Wolverhampton Resident
Phil Turner Wolverhampton City Council - Cycle Instructor
Chris Hopkins Wolverhampton City Council - Cycle Instructor
John Harris British Waterways Board
David Holman Wolves on Wheels
In the absence of Jennifer Cromie, Win Sutton chaired the meeting.

2.Minutes of Last Meeting (12 May 2011)

Agreed as an accurate record.

3.Matters Arising

(i) Item 3 (i) – Cycling in Parks

RAB advised that the cycle route around East Park is now open.

(ii) Item 3 (ii) West Midlands Local Transport Plan (LTP3)

WS asked where is the Walking & Cycling document which is shown as ‘restricted’ on the website http://www.centro.org.uk/LTP/LTP.aspx

(iii) Item 3 (iv). RAB reported there was no news on i54, JLR & associated works.

(iv) Item 5. RAB reported Wolverhampton was unsuccessful with its Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) bid but that a West Midlands Metropolitan Area bid was being submitted.

(v) Item 9g. RAB has reported the Forum’s concerns about the state of the Meccano Bridge and other structures in the Smestow Valley and advised that WCC was aware of the situation. BA suggested that the Meccano Bridge might actually belong to British Waterways Board.

4. Road Safety – Speed & Enforcement

Tim Philpot, the Council’s Road Safety Manager, gave a talk on the issue. He included reference to the recent experimental introduction of a 20mph default speed limit in Portsmouth. After one year, he reported that the results were inconclusive.

TP also reported on recent developments including:

  1. A report from Royal Holloway College report which demonstrated that, over 20mph, children can’t accurately judge vehicle speeds. This ability develops with age.

  2. A Department for Transport (DfT) survey has been published on social attitudes to transport. This showed 71% support for a default 20mph speed limit but 48% support for traffic calming, suggesting that the highest level of support was for 20mph speed limits supported by traffic calming.

  3. More local authorities trialling 20mph speed limits, including Warrington, but with limited support from the Police. On the basis of this the City Council is monitoring what happens elsewhere and trying to determine what works.

  4. The Coalition Government relaxing rules on signing and what can be done in terms of traffic management and announcing that it is to re-issue guidance on 20mph limits

  5. Portsmouth announcing two year results which confirm a fall in overall casualties but an increase in numbers Killed & Seriously injured (KSI).

TP also advised that he has carried out an analysis of schools in Wolverhampton with poor accident records in the surrounding area and identified a number of schools which might benefit from 20 mph zones for further investigation.

This was followed by discussion and questions.

  1. Smestow Valley Links Project

RAB reported on a project being led by Wightwick & Regis Enterprise Network (WREN) in partnership with Sustrans and BWB to improve a number of links for pedestrians and cyclists in the Smestow Valley. These are principally canals towpath or paths in the Smestow Valley Nature Reserve or other open space managed by the City Council.

The Forum gave its support to the principle of the project on the understanding that more detailed work was to be carried out on the feasibility of individual elements. It also recognised the need to balance the needs of different users of such paths.

  1. Training Report

SS informed the Forum that cycle training had just finished a busy time with the following trained in May-July:

  • Level 1 off-road; 25 primary schools & c550/600 pupils
  • Level 2 on-road; 7 schools & c650 pupils
  • Cycle training for non-riders at Kings School & elsewhere

Other activities include:

  • Bike Week Dr Bike sessions Sat 18/6
  • Bike Week Leisure ride Sun 19/6
  • Helping Beccy with event at City Show
  • Holiday course half term late May Bank Holiday (Whit week)
  • Three week summer scheme planned for August

DfT funding had been obtained for Level 1 training, WCC funds level 2.

7.Infrastructure Group Report

(i) Remaining markings on ring road crossings remain to be completed:

  • Signs at Molineux underpass
  • Broad Street junction, ring road – adjacent to Broad Street Car park and to BWB before railway bridge
  • Great Brickkiln Street/ ring road – in between lanes of ring road
  • Bottom of Darlington Street at Chapel Ash Island.

Action: Remaining markings still to be completed (RAB)

(ii) Meccano Bridge – see above

(iii) The Capital Programme has been approved and the following works are approved for 2011/12:

  • Cycle parking at Bantock Park (adjacent to pavilion)
  • Cycle parking at Bradmore Rec (two locations)
  • Cycle parking at Pendeford Avenue shops (adj. no. 61 opp. Top of Green Lane)
  • NCN Route 81 signing
  • Penn Road – shared footway cycle facilities Lea Road to Penn Road Island
  • Oak Street/ Great Brickkiln Street – dropped kerbs and cycle cut through

Action: Ask CB whether the Infrastructure group is to be reconvened (RAB)

8.Marketing/ Promotions Report

.RAB reported:

  • No update on map
  • Transport Direct cycle journey planner still not been officially launched

9. Cycle Sport

MA circulated a note he had prepared. He proposed creating a group to sustain the activities and the links developed by Beccy while in post. The idea is to bring groups together to share volunteers, ideas and contacts.

There was support for the principle of such a group from the Forum and it was agreed to discuss the matter more at the next meeting.

10. Major Schemes

The Bus Station is now open and Advanced Stop Lines have been installed at the Lichfield Street and Railway Drive arms of the new junction.

11. CTC Cycle Champions Project

BM reported that, in the last quarter, 916 people had been regular riders, 345 of which were regular returners. Outreach events had brought people in:

  • Bike Week

  • Cycle Festival at City Show with 700 registered riders over two days plus visitors & spectators. Very successful event. >300 feedback cards.

11 adults have been trained and another 5 are currently having lessons, all funded by WCC.

There is a training group for the cycle event at the Wolverhampton Marathon in September; a group of nurses is training to raise money for New Cross Hospital.

Disability groups are also training for the marathon.

£10,000 Short Breaks funding has been obtained for children with learning disabilities. Children from Westcroft School are going mountain bike training on Cannock Chase and on a weekend in Snowdonia.

East Park – lining and signing are now in place and the park’s user group are supportive of the project allowing cycling in the park.

BA asked whether cycling is to be allowed in any other parks and RAB explained that East Park is a pilot with the potential to extend the scheme to other parks.

12. Wolves on Wheels Report

DW reported that WoW made a contribution to Bike Week and the Cycle Festival activities that BM organised.

13. Sustrans Liaison

DW was interested in:

  • NCN R81 signing – to be done this year as reported above
  • Routeing of NCN R81 north of Autherley Junction; its proposed diversion from the towpath of the Shropshire Union to the open space opposite much improves the position with Staffs CC on Barnhurst Lane. Linked to Smestow Valley Links project referred to above.

14. Any Other Business


15. Date of Next Meeting

6pm, Thursdays 20 October 2011, Aldersley School

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