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Thousands support London-wide safety cycling campaign

PUBLISHED: 14:23 23 July 2015 | UPDATED: 14:23 23 July 2015

Havering Cyclists will present a petition tomorrow (Fri) asking for more road safety measures to improve London's roads. Picture: PA Image

Havering Cyclists will present a petition tomorrow (Fri) asking for more road safety measures to improve London's roads. Picture: PA Image

PA/Press Association Images

Calls for road safety improvements has encouraged thousands to support a London-wide campaign to protect cyclists.

More than 10,000 people have signed a petition initiated by London Cycling Campaign (LCC) asking for improvements to all London borough roads in order to cater for cyclists’ needs.

Havering Cyclists will be presenting the petition to Cllr Robert Benham, cabinet member for environment, today (Fri).

He said: “I’m pleased to be receiving this petition and I’m aware of the issues that are being raised which affects not only Havering but the whole of London. The safety of cyclists is a high priority and is always considered when we design road layouts. We also consult with local cyclists on a regular basis to address problems.”

Changes including space for cycling in areas such as Roneo Corner and introducing 20mph zones around schools are just a few of the ideas campaigners want brought in.

Ray Whitehouse, Havering Cyclists co-ordinator, said: “Space for cycling is a great idea but currently Havering has a long way to go before it could be seen as safe and inviting for everybody to cycle.

“The specific improvements that Havering’s councillors promised, if elected, would make a huge difference and from what people tell us at our regular street stalls, we know that many more people in Havering would cycle if only they felt that it was safe enough for them to do so.”

According to Transport for London (TfL), there was a 10per cent increase in the number of people hopping on their bikes last year, with almost 28,000 cyclists a day taking advantage of “Boris Bikes” as part of the Santander Cycles scheme.

And more than double the usual number of bikes were hired during the Tube strike earlier this month.

As part of The Mayor’s Vision for Cycling in London, Boris Johnson said: “At the very heart of this strategy is my belief that helping cycling will not just help cyclists. It will create better places for everyone.”

However, the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC) is calling for more precautions to be installed across the EU.

The French government has also announced 20 new road safety measures it is introducing, including banning the use of headphones connected to mobile phones for cyclists and drivers after the country experienced its first national rise in road deaths in more than 10 years.

The London Cycling Campaign (LCC) is hoping London will soon follow in implementing further safety regulations.

Rosie Downes, campaigns manager at the LCC, said: “It is heartening that the number of people killed or seriously injured while cycling has fallen, but the figures are still unacceptably high.

“The growth in cycling is welcome, and highlights the urgent need for London’s streets to offer safe space for cycling for all.”

To sign the petition visit lcc.org.uk


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