Present: John Metcalf (STACC, Chair), Roger Bangs (Spokes, Deputy Chair), Ian Gregory (WelHatCycling, Secretary, Minutes), Robert Jones (CTC Stort Valley), Odette Carter (HCC), Nick Clarke (STACC), Michael Melnyczuk (Sustrans).
Apologies for Absence - Nick Truran (HCC), Chris Whitehouse (WelHatCycling)
As officers were elected for two years at last year's AGM and all were happy to continue there was no need for elections. Ian Gregory agreed to continue casually filling the role of Publicity Officer until the next AGM.
Minutes of meeting held 1st February 2018 were approved
Someone thought there was going to be a cycling month as part of the Hertfordshire Year of Physical Activity (HertsYOPA18). IG said he had seen a calendar some time ago and remembered seeing a walking month but no cycling month. JM said he would ask Nick Truran about it - Action JM
[The HertsYOPA18 Fact Sheet states that each month will have a theme and June will be "This Girl Can in Herts & Bike Month", lead by Herts Sports and Physical Activity Partnership (HSP) and HCC Transport].
JM asked OC about the possibility of HCC adopting the Healthy Streets approach. OC said there are a few people in public health looking at environmental aspects and named Bethan Clemence and Oliver Mytton. JM said he knew Oliver from St Albans and would contact him - Action JM
Hertfordshire Local Transport Plan LTP4
LTP4 has been broadly welcomed by cycling groups and there was a largely positive response to the online survey. It still has to go to cabinet before it can be adopted but that should happen within the next month or so.
NC pointed out that St Albans parking policy dates from 2002
There was a discussion about how LTP4 will influence the ten district and borough councils. OC said that there is no direct connection but when district and borough councils next update their local plans they should be guided by LTP4.
JM mentioned the area Growth and Transport Plans (GTPs) which will be produced as part of the LTP4 implementation plan, along with the A414 Corridor Strategy. IG asked whether there was a connection between the Hertfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership and the GTPs. OC answered that HCC is the highway authority in charge of the plans but that the LEP could be a source of funding.
Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plans
JM reported that St Albans City and District Council might have the resources later in the year to develop a plan.
Vegetation clearance programme
Ringway have cleared vegetation from the footpath alongside the A5185 between St Albans and Redbourn and the shared-use path alongside the A1081 between St Albans and Harpenden. See photos in STACC April 2018 Newsletter.
[Apparently it is not Ringway who have been siding the paths for HCC in St Albans District as STACC incorrectly assumed. It fact it is St Albans City & District Council, who have taken over responsibility for weeds management from HCC - see this News Release].
IG reported that the thick accumulated leaf mulch had been scraped off the Cole Green Way at the Hertford end, revealing a good solid surface beneath. OC said that this had been done by the Countryside Management Service with Highways funding.
RB said that the Rickmansworth end of the Ebury Way needs similar attention. Apparently Three Rivers District Council owns that bit. OC said she would look at how it might be funded.
Close passing initiative
IG referred to the launch of Operation Velo
[On 23rd Feb the Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Road Policing Unit launched Operation Velo to reduce cycling casualties on the road through education and behavioural change. This will include deployment of plain clothes officers on bicycles identifying drivers of vehicles who do not adopt a "safe pass" approach. Operation Velo was initially launched in Cambridge city centre, with plans to roll it out across the three counties in the future].
HCC Cycle Forum
OC said that there are currently no plans for a meeting but she would like the Cycle Forum to continue.
Suggestions for topics included planning issues and identification of schemes we would like to see (OC said she would speak to Nick Truran about mapping issues). JM suggested inviting district and borough reps to look at LTP4 implementation.
The National Street Gazetteer contains definitive information for streets in England and Wales.
Healthy Streets, Active Mobility, Air Pollution and Health
JM said he would discuss this when he contacts Oliver Mytton - Action JM
OC identified Richard Roberts and Colette Wyatt-Lowe as HCC Councillors on the Health & Wellbeing Board.
Revision of Roads in Hertfordshire highway design guide
OC said that Huw Hamer has produced a document for cycling infrastructure based on Highways England and Oxfordshire design standards but we can't see it because it will form part of a more general document which has not yet been published.
Treasurer was not present but earlier said that there has been no activity since his previous report.
Reports on proposals, meetings and events
Forthcoming meetings and events
Spokes will be at the Rickmansworth Festival (19th/20th May)
STACC will be at the Know How Festival on 29th April (part of SuStAinable St Albans week). This will include rides and bike maintenance.
NC said that STACC are inviting Larry Heyman of Thameslink to talk about cycling facilities at stations at their public meeting in June.
Any other business
RB reported that the Deputy Mayor of Watford, Peter Taylor, who is standing for Mayor, wants to set up a new cycling forum in Watford [see this 29th November article in the Watford Observer].
RB wrote to Ralph Sangster (cabinet member for highways) about problems arising from recent works on Lower High Street in Watford [see letter on Spokes website]. OC said that the works were carried out to satisfy a legal requirement relating to a development. Problems should have been picked up in a Stage 3 Road Safety Audit.
MM spoke briefly about the ongoing audit of the National Cycle Network. Each region will get a review board with representation from County Councils, the Canal & and River Trust, major landowners etc. JM asked about how we could get involved and MM suggested we talk to Peter Bate.
NC mentioned that STACC has reprinted its leaflets.
IG reported that the CycleHerts website gets very little traffic and requested that member organisations link to us from their own websites.
Dates of future meetings