Cycling through a busy city, without battling with cars – instead they give way to cyclists and pedestrians at every junction. A considerate approach to/from other road users, an imaginative solution to a busy roundabout. One day in Darlington…
In 2007, Darlington Cycling Campaign produced a position paper for presentation at the Darlington Cycling Symposium, which we organised in March of that year during the run-up to council elections. This set out a vision for cycling in the town for the future, and established the basis for future campaign policy.
- You can view and download a PDF version here.
- You can view and download the original research done by Sustrans & Socialdata in 2004, on which much of our paper is based, here.
- You can view and download a summary of the Sustrans / Socialdata research carried out in all three Sustainable Travel Towns here.
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Highlights of the Campaign Position Paper
- The Sustainable Travel and Cycling grants received by Darlington Borough Council from 2004 were given by our national government to address national problems. The term “Demonstration Town” applies to both grants, because Darlington is expected to demonstrate something useful for the rest of the nation to follow. Taking the money implies a national responsibility that Darlington Cycling Campaign takes seriously.
- The paper specifically addresses the opportunity identified in Sustrans/Socialdata’s research to encourage 34% of 2004 Darlington car travellers to use a bike instead. If Darlington were successful, and our formula was adopted nationally, this would make a significant contribution to reducing carbon emissions.
- The Campaign sees the key issues that promote or hinder greater cycling as cycling’s status, speed and directness of cycle routes, safety of cycle routes, and the relative priority given to different modes of transport in the town.
- Traffic law needs clarifying, now that cycling is officially promoted in our urban areas. Even some cycling organisations are stuck in a 20th century mindset. All sustainable forms of transport now need to be given much greater priority in urban areas, with a shared space, rather than segregationist philosophy, underpinning our thinking.
- The Pedestrian Heart is a great opportunity to demonstrate this approach in practice, but requires both training and policing directed towards a more considerate behaviour towards other modes of travel. The Campaign is calling for police on bikes to patrol the Heart, and for cycle trainers and driving instructors to develop programmes designed for shared urban spaces.
- We want Darlington to become an example to the rest of the nation. The Symposium will end with a Community Declaration to central government to adopt a “Darlington Formula” for urban travel planning nationally, and to help us firm up that formula.