Former professor of transport urges Bournemouth Council to reconsider 'foolish' cycling in Square decision

Transport expert Professor Norman Ashford

Transport expert Professor Norman Ashford

First published in News by

A FORMER Professor of transport planning has urged Bournemouth council to reconsider its “foolish” decision to allow cycling in the Square and at Pier Approach.

Norman Ashford, a Professor Emeritus at Loughborough University, said he was “appalled” to learn of the trial and believes it could prove dangerous.

“It is astonishing now to find that the council members have decided to allow cyclists to ride across the Square and the Pier Approach,” he said. “These are the very busiest areas of pedestrian activity in the town.

“The injection of cycle traffic cannot be justified in these areas. To state that pedestrians will be given right of way is a vacuous suggestion, which simply ignores the dangers that these changes in regulation will incur.

“The council has ventured into an area where insufficient thought has been given to the resultant consequences that will lower the quality of life for the vast majority of residents and visitors to give some minor advantage to a very small percentage of the population.”

Professor Ashford, who lives in Bath Road, Bournemouth, spent 25 years as Professor of Transport Planning.

His role included supervising research into the planning of the pedestrian area of the market town of Loughborough and chairing two conferences in Cambridge where the matter of keeping cyclists separate from pedestrians was discussed in length.

“Cycles were considered to present a real danger to elderly and frail pedestrians and to children,” he said. “The whole idea of pedestrianising an area is to give a sense of safety and security to those in age groups that are not comfortable or considered safe in the presence of mixed pedestrian and wheeled traffic.

“I would urge Bournemouth Town Council to think hard and think again before initiating this foolish action.”

Councillor Michael Filer, portfolio holder for Transport, said: “What the council is doing is proposing to regularise the current status of cycling in the Square where historically some parts are permitted to be used by cyclists and always have been.

“By introducing a 12-month trial we are looking to confirm that careful and considerate cyclists are welcome to use this space alongside other users. Pedestrians retain priority in the Square, as is common practice in shared spaces across the UK.

“A date for the start of the trial has yet to be determined but will be made public in advance.”

Comments (24)

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12:12pm Thu 22 May 14

thisloginprocessisdaft says...

It'll be fine so long as those who do cycle are careful. If they aren't then of course whatever action needs to be taken should be.

I for one will be mindful of those around me if I head down that way on my bike. Sadly,just like some who drive cars etc, a few won't be.
It'll be fine so long as those who do cycle are careful. If they aren't then of course whatever action needs to be taken should be. I for one will be mindful of those around me if I head down that way on my bike. Sadly,just like some who drive cars etc, a few won't be. thisloginprocessisdaft
  • Score: 10

12:13pm Thu 22 May 14

Noel. says...

I think I agree with the Professor.
I think I agree with the Professor. Noel.
  • Score: 11

12:14pm Thu 22 May 14

GeorgeW64 says...

He looks like he needs to get out on a bike.
He looks like he needs to get out on a bike. GeorgeW64
  • Score: -1

12:25pm Thu 22 May 14

Wackerone says...

What the hell is a 'professor of transport'? Just another dreamt up 'non job' position and another wasted degree course I suspect.
What the hell is a 'professor of transport'? Just another dreamt up 'non job' position and another wasted degree course I suspect. Wackerone
  • Score: -16

12:26pm Thu 22 May 14

jinglebell says...

I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.
I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters. jinglebell
  • Score: 15

12:54pm Thu 22 May 14

muscliffman says...

Another joke comment from Councillor Filer "historically some parts are permitted to be used by cyclists and always have been." But exactly the same applies to heavy good trucks and double-decker buses, so why not let them completely back in? - at least the vulnerable town centre pedestrians would be able to hear them coming!
Another joke comment from Councillor Filer "historically some parts are permitted to be used by cyclists and always have been." But exactly the same applies to heavy good trucks and double-decker buses, so why not let them completely back in? - at least the vulnerable town centre pedestrians would be able to hear them coming! muscliffman
  • Score: 9

1:01pm Thu 22 May 14

suzigirl says...

jinglebell wrote:
I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.
The only problem is that cyclists rarely use cycle lanes!
[quote][p][bold]jinglebell[/bold] wrote: I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.[/p][/quote]The only problem is that cyclists rarely use cycle lanes! suzigirl
  • Score: 6

1:06pm Thu 22 May 14

HiGene says...

Last night, a car driver parked up in the one-way street where I live, waiting for someone. Despite being lit up like a Christmas tree on my bike, he made no attempt to move on and park further along, and no apology. I had to dismount and sidle past. I have therefore decided to tar all motorists with the same brush, as I have had a bad experience. And he wasn't wearing a helmet. Irresponsible and loutish. And those cyclists going around, texting, no hands on the handlebar, earphones plugged in, oblivious to their surrounding. Idiots. And the scummy pedestrians who deliberately barge into you and make no attempt to make room. Lowlife scumbags.

Executive summary: I hate everyone.

Phew, that feels better.
Last night, a car driver parked up in the one-way street where I live, waiting for someone. Despite being lit up like a Christmas tree on my bike, he made no attempt to move on and park further along, and no apology. I had to dismount and sidle past. I have therefore decided to tar all motorists with the same brush, as I have had a bad experience. And he wasn't wearing a helmet. Irresponsible and loutish. And those cyclists going around, texting, no hands on the handlebar, earphones plugged in, oblivious to their surrounding. Idiots. And the scummy pedestrians who deliberately barge into you and make no attempt to make room. Lowlife scumbags. Executive summary: I hate everyone. Phew, that feels better. HiGene
  • Score: 4

1:14pm Thu 22 May 14

Adrian XX says...

These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here.

Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.
These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor. Adrian XX
  • Score: -1

1:42pm Thu 22 May 14

PokesdownMark says...

jinglebell wrote:
I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.
Because if crossing the square by bike at 7am or whenever there are hardly any pedestrians, why criminalise cyclists who carefully and respectfully cycle across?

I wonder what this prof thinks about the schemes where traffic signs, curbs and road markings are removed in an attempt to slow down traffic?
[quote][p][bold]jinglebell[/bold] wrote: I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.[/p][/quote]Because if crossing the square by bike at 7am or whenever there are hardly any pedestrians, why criminalise cyclists who carefully and respectfully cycle across? I wonder what this prof thinks about the schemes where traffic signs, curbs and road markings are removed in an attempt to slow down traffic? PokesdownMark
  • Score: 1

1:59pm Thu 22 May 14

NickTheGreekinBmth says...

In reality, if you every stopped to notice you'd see that cyclists have been cycling across the square and pier approach for years when its not busy and dismounting when it is. In other words, they have, on the whole, been using common sense. There's no reason at all why that won't continue. I don't know what all the fuss is about.
In reality, if you every stopped to notice you'd see that cyclists have been cycling across the square and pier approach for years when its not busy and dismounting when it is. In other words, they have, on the whole, been using common sense. There's no reason at all why that won't continue. I don't know what all the fuss is about. NickTheGreekinBmth
  • Score: 6

2:28pm Thu 22 May 14

HiGene says...

And while I'm in rant mode, why do we implicitly accept road humps / sleeping policemen?

I had to replace both my bike wheels recently because near where I live, there are road humps everywhere, which knacker the spokes in no time.

Why do we put up with road humps? Because motorists can't be trusted to keep to the speed limit.

AND BEFORE anyone mentions "road tax" (which, like fairies and goblins, doesn't exist), let me just educate you that the roads are paid for from general taxation.
And while I'm in rant mode, why do we implicitly accept road humps / sleeping policemen? I had to replace both my bike wheels recently because near where I live, there are road humps everywhere, which knacker the spokes in no time. Why do we put up with road humps? Because motorists can't be trusted to keep to the speed limit. AND BEFORE anyone mentions "road tax" (which, like fairies and goblins, doesn't exist), let me just educate you that the roads are paid for from general taxation. HiGene
  • Score: 0

3:01pm Thu 22 May 14

speedy231278 says...

Has this trial actually started yet? I'm sure the no cycling signs are still up in the Square....
Has this trial actually started yet? I'm sure the no cycling signs are still up in the Square.... speedy231278
  • Score: 1

3:02pm Thu 22 May 14

Franks Tank says...

Norman Ashford - "A former Professor of transport planning".
What sort of transport would that be then Norman?

Look him up, seem to know a lot about aviation planning in America.
That'll be relevant experience for cycling in Bournemouth Square then.
Norman Ashford - "A former Professor of transport planning". What sort of transport would that be then Norman? Look him up, seem to know a lot about aviation planning in America. That'll be relevant experience for cycling in Bournemouth Square then. Franks Tank
  • Score: 1

3:24pm Thu 22 May 14

muscliffman says...

HiGene wrote:
And while I'm in rant mode, why do we implicitly accept road humps / sleeping policemen?

I had to replace both my bike wheels recently because near where I live, there are road humps everywhere, which knacker the spokes in no time.

Why do we put up with road humps? Because motorists can't be trusted to keep to the speed limit.

AND BEFORE anyone mentions "road tax" (which, like fairies and goblins, doesn't exist), let me just educate you that the roads are paid for from general taxation.
Common ground at last, motorists and cyclists are both facing expensive maintenance costs because of 'traffic calming', especially the sort Council's love putting outside schools where the only time it could serve any useful purpose is when the whole roadway is already at a standstill!
[quote][p][bold]HiGene[/bold] wrote: And while I'm in rant mode, why do we implicitly accept road humps / sleeping policemen? I had to replace both my bike wheels recently because near where I live, there are road humps everywhere, which knacker the spokes in no time. Why do we put up with road humps? Because motorists can't be trusted to keep to the speed limit. AND BEFORE anyone mentions "road tax" (which, like fairies and goblins, doesn't exist), let me just educate you that the roads are paid for from general taxation.[/p][/quote]Common ground at last, motorists and cyclists are both facing expensive maintenance costs because of 'traffic calming', especially the sort Council's love putting outside schools where the only time it could serve any useful purpose is when the whole roadway is already at a standstill! muscliffman
  • Score: 2

3:26pm Thu 22 May 14

FNS-man says...

To quote Han Solo:

"Where did you dig up this old fossil?"

La-la land it would appear.
To quote Han Solo: "Where did you dig up this old fossil?" La-la land it would appear. FNS-man
  • Score: -9

3:28pm Thu 22 May 14

FNS-man says...

"that old fossil?" apparently.
"that old fossil?" apparently. FNS-man
  • Score: -7

3:28pm Thu 22 May 14

suzigirl says...

Adrian XX wrote:
These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.
So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable!
[quote][p][bold]Adrian XX[/bold] wrote: These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.[/p][/quote]So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable! suzigirl
  • Score: -5

3:44pm Thu 22 May 14

The-Bleeding-Obvious says...

suzigirl wrote:
Adrian XX wrote:
These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.
So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable!
For decades it's been much more OK between cars/motorbikes and pedestrians - even more unbelievable!
[quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Adrian XX[/bold] wrote: These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.[/p][/quote]So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable![/p][/quote]For decades it's been much more OK between cars/motorbikes and pedestrians - even more unbelievable! The-Bleeding-Obvious
  • Score: 2

4:32pm Thu 22 May 14

The-Bleeding-Obvious says...

PokesdownMark wrote:
jinglebell wrote:
I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.
Because if crossing the square by bike at 7am or whenever there are hardly any pedestrians, why criminalise cyclists who carefully and respectfully cycle across?

I wonder what this prof thinks about the schemes where traffic signs, curbs and road markings are removed in an attempt to slow down traffic?
'No Cycling' must be the most common sign in the town. The over cliff paths and the chines should be next to have their cycling bans removed, they are never as busy as the prom is in the depths of winter!
If you got off your bike at every no cycling sign in this town you'd be spending half your journey pushing your bike! A bit like having a dog and barking yourself!
[quote][p][bold]PokesdownMark[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]jinglebell[/bold] wrote: I can't see the problem of getting off your bike, and wheeling it across the pedestrianised area until reaching a cycling lane; we are talking about a matter of a few meters.[/p][/quote]Because if crossing the square by bike at 7am or whenever there are hardly any pedestrians, why criminalise cyclists who carefully and respectfully cycle across? I wonder what this prof thinks about the schemes where traffic signs, curbs and road markings are removed in an attempt to slow down traffic?[/p][/quote]'No Cycling' must be the most common sign in the town. The over cliff paths and the chines should be next to have their cycling bans removed, they are never as busy as the prom is in the depths of winter! If you got off your bike at every no cycling sign in this town you'd be spending half your journey pushing your bike! A bit like having a dog and barking yourself! The-Bleeding-Obvious
  • Score: 2

7:03pm Thu 22 May 14

Betsyboo81 says...

Franks Tank wrote:
Norman Ashford - "A former Professor of transport planning".
What sort of transport would that be then Norman?

Look him up, seem to know a lot about aviation planning in America.
That'll be relevant experience for cycling in Bournemouth Square then.
I fully agree!
What the report fails to mention is that this "Professor" did his "Research" on the matter in the 1960's and for the latter part of his life worked on transport research for airports!
How this is relevant to 2014 in Bournemouth and cycling I don't know.
Why we as a town are so anti-cycling is beyond me?
Me have a population on 200,000 residents and a small handful of cyclist/pedestrian related incidents annually, but all people seem to do is complain about any plans to get more people cycling.
[quote][p][bold]Franks Tank[/bold] wrote: Norman Ashford - "A former Professor of transport planning". What sort of transport would that be then Norman? Look him up, seem to know a lot about aviation planning in America. That'll be relevant experience for cycling in Bournemouth Square then.[/p][/quote]I fully agree! What the report fails to mention is that this "Professor" did his "Research" on the matter in the 1960's and for the latter part of his life worked on transport research for airports! How this is relevant to 2014 in Bournemouth and cycling I don't know. Why we as a town are so anti-cycling is beyond me? Me have a population on 200,000 residents and a small handful of cyclist/pedestrian related incidents annually, but all people seem to do is complain about any plans to get more people cycling. Betsyboo81
  • Score: 2

9:28pm Thu 22 May 14

nothingtofear says...

The Prof wanted to go for the classic Echo arms folded pose but they wouldn't meet in the middle.
The Prof wanted to go for the classic Echo arms folded pose but they wouldn't meet in the middle. nothingtofear
  • Score: -2

11:01pm Thu 22 May 14

Adrian XX says...

suzigirl wrote:
Adrian XX wrote:
These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.
So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable!
No, it's not OK, but car/cyclist collisions are always worse.
[quote][p][bold]suzigirl[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Adrian XX[/bold] wrote: These areas need to be shared cycle-pedestrian areas where no one has priority. It works in France and Germany where cyclists are invariably allowed to cycle in shopping precincts. I simply don't understand why it cannot work here. Yes, we might have the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian, but compared to a car-cycle collision the injuries are likely to be minor.[/p][/quote]So the occasional collision between a cyclist and a pedestrian is okay then - unbelievable![/p][/quote]No, it's not OK, but car/cyclist collisions are always worse. Adrian XX
  • Score: 4

2:59pm Fri 23 May 14

Humf says...

And here is the story about cycling, now if only we can get a Chinese takeaway and a cyclist in the same story :

"Man cycles into Chinese Takeaway, leaves without paying, defecates on the pavement outside, cycles into the sea at Boscombe tearing a hole in the surf reef, escapes through the New Forest enraging Brockenhurst residents who then leave thousands of tacks on the road causing the deaths of a few ponies". Can anyone get BBC in the story as well ?!
And here is the story about cycling, now if only we can get a Chinese takeaway and a cyclist in the same story : "Man cycles into Chinese Takeaway, leaves without paying, defecates on the pavement outside, cycles into the sea at Boscombe tearing a hole in the surf reef, escapes through the New Forest enraging Brockenhurst residents who then leave thousands of tacks on the road causing the deaths of a few ponies". Can anyone get BBC in the story as well ?! Humf
  • Score: 0

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