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Southwark Council giving fixed penalties to bikers in Union Street

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Sunday 26 October 2014 10.44am
Brendan D wrote:
...There is a particularly long pedestrian phase on all 4 lights...

As a pedestrian, it doesn't feel like a particularly long phase. However, when you're standing on the kerb breathing in the pollution, the wait for the phases for less space efficient and more poisonous forms of transport does feel very long.
Sunday 26 October 2014 7.42pm
James Hatts wrote:
That bit of contraflow cycle lane with the dismount sign is of very poor design and annoys me every time I cycle that way.
I suspect that the problem will be dealt with by the Mayor's Quietways programme - Union Street is part of the first set of routes which are due to be upgraded/introduced in the next couple of years.

Here's the most recent map of the planned routes:

http://democracy.cityoflondon.gov.uk/documents/s42046/Appendix%205.pdf

Thanks James, I didn't know about the Quietways programme and it looks like that section will be covered by it. However, the relevant TfL page is quite vague about the programme itself, saying that it will be delivered "over the next 10 years." https://www.tfl.gov.uk/travel-information/improvements-and-projects/central-london-cycling-grid

Now that's a long wait and the cycle lane needs urgent improvements. For those who haven't had the opportunity to experience this incredibly bad example of urban design, here's a picture. https://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/15014273124/

I am going to get in touch with the Council and the local councillors to try and nag them into action. If someone has any experience of lobbying the Council on this sort of issues, any suggestions would be welcome.
Sunday 26 October 2014 7.51pm
I am 95 per cent sure that the council will not have any appetite to make changes to this bit of cycle lane before the Quietway project is done.

The map I linked to above only shows those Quietways due to be up and running before the next mayoral elections in 2016. The overall 10-year network is more dense.

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Monday 27 October 2014 10.08am
If it flies in the face of common sense, I'd be inclined to fight fire with fire. Although these wardens have the power to require you to provide your name and address, they have no power to detain and therefore I'd get back on my bike, smile sweetly and pedal off.
Monday 27 October 2014 5.36pm
And today someone thought the best place for a diversion sign was across the eastern end of the bike path.
Monday 27 October 2014 7.05pm
Gavin Smith wrote:
If it flies in the face of common sense, I'd be inclined to fight fire with fire. Although these wardens have the power to require you to provide your name and address, they have no power to detain and therefore I'd get back on my bike, smile sweetly and pedal off.

Which is why I recommended in a previous post to not come to a halt at all...
Tuesday 28 October 2014 4.27pm
There are similar issues with other cycle lanes throughout the city, which 'wardens' chooses to target from time to time, presumably to put some coins in the coffers...

I frequently ride to Chiswick for work. If I go via Hammersmith, the cycle lane takes you onto the pavement by the bus station at the Broadway shopping centre.
There's no visible dismount sign as you ride West, but if the 'wardens' are there, they will stop and fine you when you reach the entrance to the shopping centre.

The only way to contest these fines is to go to court, and not many people have the time to go to court for 35.

A cynical person might suggest that these poorly designed parts of the cycle path infrastructure are intentional...
Tuesday 28 October 2014 4.58pm
On a related note, this morning the police had some CSO's out, as they regularly do, at the Tower Bridge Road/Grange Road junction, telling drivers off for stopping in the advanced stop section and dishing out fixed penalties to cyclists who jump the lights.

This morning I noticed a gang of four officers surrounding a cycist - I didn't see what offence he'd commited, but he didn't seem to be kicking up a fuss.

Anyway, while the four officers surrounded this chap and his bike, presumably to make sure he didn't get away without paying his fine, they were completely ignoring the Southwark Council van that had illegally plonked itself in the middle of the box junction, blocking off the road for everyone else.
Zoe
Wednesday 29 October 2014 6.40pm
I got off at the sign on Monday, walked through and over the road (as it's not clear when I can get back on) when a motorbike came flying around the corner and nearly ran into the back of me. He was actually a lovely guy and waited for me to go, but it does sort of prove that it's a difficult corner and poorly sign posted for cyclists.
Monday 3 November 2014 10.22am
There has been some discussion on the Southwark Cyclists email list about this. Opinion is that people shouldn't be issued with FPN's as its not enforceable. For it to be enforceable there needs to be a 'no cycling' sign (circular red border with cycle). All traffic signs that you must follow are circular and others, rectangular and triangles are warning and advisory (see Highway Code). So the 'Cyclists Dismount' signage is not enforceable nor is the 'End' painted on the highway. Not sure what you can do if you have already accepted the FPN.

Of course a 'Cyclist Dismount' sign doesn't say when you can get back on so one could argue that it suggests getting off an one exactly where the sign is.
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