2 March 2015

TTW Design the Wivenhoe to University Cycle Path. Part 2

Last time, we looked at The Department for Transport Guidance notes - they told us the first order of business, when providing for cyclists, was to look for ways to reduce traffic volume.

Our hands are probably a bit tied here - there aren't many roads in and out of Wivenhoe, and the proposed Wivenhoe/University cycle path follows pretty much the only route if you want to go North or West; anywhere that isn't the sea really. But just because we can’t do much, doesn’t mean we can’t do something.

Before and after. Reducing max speeds on Alresford Rd.
If you want to travel from North and West of Wivenhoe to Alresford, Brightlingsea or beyond, there are two likely routes: Brightlingsea Rd (in red on the map below) for through traffic or Alresford Road (coloured green) for local traffic. By introducing a new 40mph speed limit on the Alresford Road route, our small idea increases it's value as a local route making it less hostile for walking and cycling, and devalues it as a route for through traffic - encouraging through traffic to use the faster Brightlingsea Road, bypassing the Wivenhoe to University route.

The first corner on the Alresford road also happens to be notorious accident spot, there was another crash the day after I wrote the last post. Reducing speeds should also help improve safety here.

Next post we'll look at reducing traffic speeds on the new cycle path route using some techniques pioneered at the UK's Transport Research Laboratory.

1 February 2015

Tea and Turnips

First Sunday of the month 2pm to 4 it's the open session at the TTW allotment.

A good turn out today -  half a dozen of us including a new helper, hurrah.

We emptied the compost bins, spread some of the good compost on beds and refilled a bin with un-decomposed dry material and fresh weeds/green stuff.

We cleared  and covered some empty beds with straw and moved some broad beans and garlic to create a pathway to make it easier to lay the hose to the stand pipe.

And stopped for tea and snacks ;)

Next shared session 1st March, all welcome @ plot no. 1.
transwiv[at]gmail.com for more info.

31 January 2015

Wivenhoe Repair Café

Fix repair reuse don't throw away!

Date; 14th February 2015

Venue; Wivenhoe Library 10am - 12noon

Bring something to repair...

Clothes, jeans shirts skirts,rips tears etc.

Electrical, small appliances, kettles, hoover

Toys, fix broken wheels, lost screws.

Furniture, Small items only please.

We'd love to hear from you...

For more info; Chris 07799 494 797

15 January 2015

TTW Design the Wivenhoe to University Cycle Path!

Honestly there's nothing I'd like more, than to be wrong about this. I'd shed tears of actual joy if the impending Wivenhoe to Essex University cycle path turns out really well, and embracing local government (with literal hugs if needs be) is definitely one of the basic tenets of Transition – but I've ridden my bike in the UK too often (and I fell head over heels in love with cycling in Denmark and Holland where they do this stuff really well) to have faith in the-powers-that-be delivering a really decent cycle link to the Uni. So I've decided to self indulge and have a go at designing it myself.

The problem is illustrated by 'Bruce' writing on the infamous Wivenhoe Forum:

“I hereby predict that I (and others) will not use the path that's built as it does not allow cycling at a reasonable speed [to be sure, he's talking about commuting speeds, not racing – ed.] in safety. Many boxes will be ticked, however, and many pennies spent.
I will report back on the accuracy of this prediction when the facility is available.”

Normally I'd think that much cynicism is perhaps a bit too much cynicism, but I've recently had some fleeting insight into how this stuff gets delivered (and I've tried using the finished products) and I'm worried he's got a point.

Now, it happens that I've got zero relevant skills or expertise here. So I'm going to have to rely on readily available information to help me out. Here's how the Department for Transport suggest Local Highways Authorities (and now me) go about designing provision for cycling.

Given their enthusiasm for squeezing walkers and cyclists together at every opportunity and the apparent absence of enthusiasm for doing any of the other options, one imagines Essex County Council have a copy of this chart [from LTN 2/08] prominently displayed on the wall in their office, except somehow they managed to get some of it upside down.

One last thing before we get started. I'm going to design using the principle that my new Local Transport Network should be (and I fancy this to be quite radical) welcoming to all users.

Next post we're going to use lateral thinking to improve the route to the Uni by fixing an accident blackspot on the way to Alresford, which is in the other direction.

24 December 2014

Bicycle Happy 2015 \o/


Wivenhoe Town Council have accepted our offer on the Store, giving us a lease for 2015!  Thanks go to Essex County Council for funding support with this :-)

So an extra BIG celebration at our Procrastinators Xmas Party on 3rd January - come for a short festive cycle ride starting from the Kitchen (St John's Rd) at 3pm and/or join us there for mulled wine & nibbles 3.30 - 5pm.
Wivenhoe Bike Kitchen

12 October 2014

Repair Café

Fix repair reuse don't throw away!

Date; 18th October

Venue; The Farmers Market

Bring something to

 repair and learn

 how to fix it :)

Clothes, jeans shirts skirts,rips tears etc.

Electrical, small appliances, kettles, hoover

Toys, fix broken wheels, lost screws.

Furniture, Small items only please.

We'd love to hear from you...

For more info; Chris 07799 494 797 or chrisblomeley@gmail.com

20 September 2014

Wivenhoe Repair


Fix repair reuse don't throw away!

At today's farmers market we repaired;

12v light unit

Panasonic LCD TV

Replaced the zip on a 3ft long tent bag!

Garden rake.

In the process of being repaired;

A dumped Wollsey Major Rotavator

Bosh sander

A deserted Briggs & Stratton mower

We up cycled cutlery and made four coat hangers. 

All of these were sold for a donation. 


Many thanks to Mike who came from Rowhedge to

 help as  a volunteer repairer.