We saw at the recent election for Mayor of London, nearly all the candidates got on board “Sign for Cycling” campaign. So what are our councillors doing to support this commitment to cycling?
If you look around Sutton, you’ll be hard pressed to see anything change in regards to new cycling infrastructure. We have a couple of new shared use paths in parks, that’s about it. Ironically, there isn’t a way for many people, especially kids, to safely cycle to these parks. Parents turn up in cars so their kids can spend a couple of hours riding up and down. Essentially adding more traffic to the roads.
Cycling is a safe way to travel, but it doesn’t always feel that way, especially for vulnerable groups, such as children. Even as an experienced cyclist, I find it difficult to take my two kids for rides. Many people also ask my wife at school how she manages to ride each day with the kids. They say they would love to ride to school but don’t feel safe. So, more people drive and we are left in a catch 22 situation.
What you can do
Let’s write to our councillors and ask them what they intend to do for cycling in Sutton.
Below is a map with each ward. Locate your ward and click on it. You’ll then see a link to “Write To Them.” Click on that and you will be presented with a page which allows you to email your councillor directly. Simply ask what your councillor intends to do to support cycling in the borough.
Topics you could raise with your councillor
- Safe routes to school – would your kids love to ride to school but don’t feel able to? Let’s have some safe routes. Active travel makes for an active mind and healthier children.
- Residential roads turned into rat runs – let’s close off some roads so through traffic is eliminated, making the roads cycling friendly and better places to live. There are probably roads near you that are constantly used by commuters, highlight them.
- Reduce pollution – let’s keep Sutton green and pleasant. More traffic means less fresh air and more noise. It is affecting the lives of people, young and old.
These are just examples, I’m sure you have your own reasons. It may be that you are sick of driving into town and looking for a parking space when all you are getting is a couple of pints of milk, a trip easily done by bike. Perhaps you own a local business, these benefit hugely where cycling infrastructure is created, not only from more local custom but from clearer roads that allow deliveries to be made on time.
New segregated cycle track arrives, followed by a new cafe on the tired parade of shops opp. Kennington Pk pic.twitter.com/mvgtsHT3Ke
— KenningtonPplOnBikes (@KenningtonPOB) March 26, 2016
Sutton Schools for Cycling
I’m personally going to focusing more on getting schools together, to put collective pressure on the council to improve cycling for young people. Like many others, cycling was a way of life growing up. Things don’t need to be the way they are, nothing is inevitable, as we have seen with the transformation of central London.
If you are a teacher or a parent and want to help make cycling a viable, everyday option then contact us here at Get Sutton Cycling.
— Jono Kenyon (@Jono_Kenyon) May 9, 2014