Minutes of the HDCF meeting 7th February 2017

Attendees: Philip Ayerst, Geoff Bragg, Ruth Fletcher (Chair), Claire Freor-Humphreys, Tim Pickering, Stella Sharp, Peter Silburn (Secretary), Matt Steel

Apologies: Andy Bateson, Thea Bredie , Dick Streeter, Graham Sitton, Francis Vernon


Approval of previous minutes

Approved unamended.

Matters arising

County Hall North cycle racks

The blocked drain has been cleared of builders’ sand but there is no visible progress on the bike stands. [Update: The stands are now complete and in use – come along to our next meeting and try them out!]

Road Safety Action Group

The West Midlands Police close pass initiative to be raised at the next meeting.


North Horsham Parish Council

Ruth and Philip attended separate NHPC working group meetings with Ian Gledhill from WSCC Strategic Planning and David Lowin, north of Horsham consultant for HDC.

Ian Gledhill accepted that the WSCC Walking and Cycling Strategy and IAN195/16 (which he agrees is the ‘appropriate standard’ for cycle provision on the A264) had been published since the original plans were produced. Despite this, WSCC is not asking for any changes to the cycling provision proposed by Liberty. David Lowin felt that the standard of cycle provision proposed within the development was “good” and emphasized that HDC relies on WSCC’s advice on highways matters and will not be going beyond requirements made by WSCC. This is very disappointing, given that the planned provision for cycling, especially for crossing the A264, is so dismal.

The revised planning application from Liberty was expected shortly [Revised application since submitted: DC/16/1677]

Space for Cycling campaign

Ruth, Peter and Geoff attended the workshop organised by Cycling UK. The focus of the re-launched campaign is on a simple inclusive message that resonates with councillors and the wider public.

The emphasis is on planning a network of routes with the tools to both assess current network quality and to present a visually compelling case for investing in a network.

You can read a full report on the website.

The Steering Group will look into using the “tube map“, Cyclescape and CEAT tools to help the forum. [Since the meeting Andy Mouland from WSCC has agreed to look into the value of using CycleScape within the county.]

County elections in May

We will be canvassing all the candidates and publishing their responses like we did for the elections in May 2015.

There will be a Horsham Cycling Debate where we will invite regional party leaders and/or their cycling champions to discuss an front of an audience how they will make our roads safe for cycling. The date is confirmed as the evening of Friday 21st April in County Hall North, Horsham. We will tie-in with the Space for Cycling campaign.

We need to compile a list of issues to discuss, e.g.: Horsham to Crawley cycle route, Downs Link all-weather surfacing, links to villages (Southwater, Warnham, Mannings Heath).


Open discussion

West Sussex Cycle Strategy

Three schemes have been put forward for feasibility studies: Ifield Avenue in Crawley, Findon to Findon Valley and cycle contra-flows in Horsham.

Piries Place development

The cycle contra-flow in Copnall Way will now be retained. Marking a delineated cycle route from Copnall Way to Park Place was raised by the forum at the Development Committee and has been verbally supported by councillors but was deemed to be “highway issue”. Philip to follow up with HDC planning officer.


A personal view of cycling in Horsham

Matt Steel gave valuable feedback on his personal experience of cycling in and around Horsham:

  • He cycle commutes to Crawley and the danger of the A264 together with lack of reasonable alternative routes is a major issue. Wimlands Road is steep and slippery with all the gravel. Kilnwood Lane is treacherous in the dark. The Missing Link path is too muddy to use.
  • The recent removal of a number of ‘cyclists dismount’ signs and restrictive barriers in the town (as part of the LSTF project) has made a really big difference.
  • The cycle network needs to be child-friendly for things like riding to town and visiting friends but there are major barriers such as the North Street railway bridge and the ‘squareabout’. Although his 10-year old is quite capable physically of riding as far as Crawley, it is out of the question because of the dangerous conditions.
  • The new Tesco bridge over the A24 has made a positive difference.
  • Conditions in Horsham contrast badly with his experience riding on the beautiful new cycle superhighways in London – but they do show that it is possible to get it right.

Date of next meeting

7:30pm on Tuesday 4th April in the Hastings Room, County Hall North, WSCC, Parkside, Chart Way, Horsham.

Please enter by the side entrance. Cycle parking is available.

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