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Agenda item

Minutes of Last Meeting and Matters Arising

Minutes:

·  Palmers Walk pathway. JK highlighted a number of points made in the minutes that needed clarification or correction and according to JK, although the Group’s remit is to promote safe cycling, this should not be at the expense of areas of important community use such as Palmers Walk. 

 

ACTION: Corrections to the June minutes to include changes on page 1 ‘this proposal had originally been raised …by a representative of the Petersfield Mansions Residents Association’ to ‘by a resident of Petersfield Mansions’. ‘The path is currently regarded by many users…’ to be changed to ‘some users’.

 

Regarding the legal status of Palmer’s Walk, CR stated that it was viewed as a footpath, but that as landowner, the City Council did allow cycling.  Following the meeting, the following key points were circulated by CR for clarification:

o  Unless the landowner permits it, cycling on a footpath in England and Wales normally constitutes trespass, making it a civil but not a criminal matter. A local by-law or Traffic Regulation Order (TRO) covering a particular footpath, however, can make it an offence.

o  Although there is no legal right to cycle on footpaths, some are regularly used by cyclists. If enough cyclists use a footpath in this way without the landowner challenging them for (usually) 20 years, then a restricted byway may be claimed through ‘presumed rights’ under s31 of the 1980 Highways Act.

o  A 'No Cycling' sign (red circle, white background, black cycle) AND a TRO or byelaw would make cycling on a footpath an offence. All 'No Cycling', 'No Motorcycling', 'Cyclists Dismount' signs have no legal status – they are advisory.

In terms of action taken since the June Steering Group, AF confirmed there had been a site visit 29th July which included a number of stakeholders including representatives of Bradmore Court and ARU.  Various issues were discussed including whether to keep the width of the footpath as existing. AF has kept in touch with all stakeholders throughout the process. Should the Group support the need to re-consult, the current options (circulated) are as follows:

1. To widen the path to 1.8 metres (a 0.6m increase).

2. To widen the path to 2.2 metres (a 1m increase on the current width as proposed in 2015)

3. To maintain the path at the existing width of 1.2 metres.

 

It is proposed the consultation would run from 7-31st October and clarity is currently being sought on whether to include an on-line survey.

 

No decisions were made on the day of the site visit as segregation was also discussed. According to AF, this option would however need a total width of 3.7 metres which officers consider to be unfeasible and impractical, including Access Officer Mark Taylor.

 

Members agreed to proceed with the re-consultation in line with the recommendation made by the Independent Complaints Investigator. AF will continue in his role to carry forward the project.

 

ACTION: The Palmers Walk re-consultation to be taken to East Area Committee for consideration in the short term, as its Members were in a position to encourage community engagement. (Date TBC)

 

Results of the consultation would be captured by late 2016/early 2017.

 

·  County/City Cycle Schemes – Huntingdon Road.

 

CR reported that there were issues of non-compliance regarding the new pedestrian crossing on Storey’s Way and that officers were exploring various options. MS stated that the Oxford Road area had improved but that the inclusion of a bench and a BT box meant that cyclists were being forced into the path of pedestrians. Some cyclists fail to use the new crossing and continue to wait at the old junction, while various signage and road markings make the area confusing for all road users. 

 

According to MD, some signage had been removed but as a cyclist, he was aware of the risk of clashing with other road users. The introduction of new traffic management initiatives should be regarded as positive however.

 

ACTION: CR to approach County colleagues regarding additional/repeated temporary signage to raise awareness of the new Oxford Road crossing. (The Arbury Road improvements could be viewed as a more successful example.) NOTE: CR consulted with County colleagues who confirmed that the temporary signage would be going back in.

Supporting documents: