Date   

Camden Cycling Campaign's new newsgroup

Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
 


Welcome to Camden Cycling Campaign's new newsgroup.

The newsgroup first started in September 1998 and was hosted by Listbot; however their free hosting service was discontinued in August 2001 so we migrated to this Yahoo group.

See our newsgroup page at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/CamdenCyclingCampaign

Camden Cycling Campaign's main home page is here: http://www.greengas.u-net.com/home.html

Paul Gasson
Camden Cycling Campaign Co-ordinator


CCC News Update

Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
 

Items in this bulletin:
Another cyclist dies... yet the battle for a safer cycling environment
continues to rage
Newsgroup migration complete
Cycling in the Local Papers
CCC Rides - 25th - 27th Aug (pre-booking required), 30th Sept.
Exceeding the speed limit still widespread
Chain Links
A Bicycling Mystery: Head Injuries Piling Up (despite increase in USA helmet
use)
Cycling in the local papers: Death, Heath, Seven Stations Link...

Paul Gasson
Camden Cycling Campaign Co-ordinator
[Campaign home page: http://www.greengas.u-net.com/home.html
Previous updates can be found on our latest news web page at
http://www.greengas.u-net.com/hotnews.htm
To send a message to everyone on this list, email to:
CamdenCyclingCampaign@... ]


Another cyclist dies... yet the battle for a safer cycling environment
continues to rage
'Editorial'
This week's Ham & High reports that a 69 year old cyclist died after being
knocked off his bicycle 10 days ago in Church Row near the Heath Street
junction (see 'Cycling in the Local Papers' later in this update).
Whilst this is probably an unfortunate statistical 'blip', 3 cyclists have
been killed in Camden in the last 8 months. A cyclist was run over by a
'tipper truck' in Tavistock Square in late November, and an other died in
Dartmouth Park Hill in February. A further 28 cyclists suffered serious
injuries in our borough in 2000.

Meanwhile the debate is continuing in the local papers (9 articles and
letters this week) about cycling on the Heath (fuelled in part by the Heath
and Hampstead Society's anti-cycling campaign), and on the subject of the
high quality Seven Stations Link running past Coram's Fields in Guilford
Street (the trust running the Fields is worried about children being
squashed by cyclists). And the council's £400,000 scheme to reduce
rat-running through Covent Garden has been 'scrapped' after 4 weeks
following a rebellion led by taxi drivers. Given the relatively minor impact
of these changes, it seems highly probable that the soon to be implemented
right turn motorist ban at the top of Camden High Street will lead to
further sensationalist local press headlines and howls of outrage.

What a bizarre society we live in where our local government has a raft of
policies aimed at car restraint which is apparently supported by most
people, yet attempts to implement anything meaningful is fought tooth and
nail at every turn.
If we cannot implement effective policies in Camden with the chronic
problems we suffer as a result of our lives being dominated by the motor
car, what chance of success is there elsewhere in the UK?

Maybe this week's Camden New Journal letter writer who argues that 'cycling
needs a spin job' has got a point. Central and local government, and
campaigns such as ours, clearly have to work even harder on changing public
awareness and perceptions. More resources obviously need to be devoted to
promoting the benefits of getting people out of their cars and making
alternatives such as cycling and walking more attractive. And the social and
other consequences of failing to reverse increases in unnecessary car
ownership and use need to dramatically spelt out.
Otherwise the battles over improvements to our street environment will
continue to unneccessarily drain the public purse and divert council staff
from getting on and acheiving contructive & innovative change.

Whilst a staunch supporter of local democracy, I must confess to feeling
rather bored by the predictable nimbyistic protests we routinely encounter
in Camden. I hope that the council sticks to its policy principles and has
the guts to continue to push through pro-sustainable transport schemes even
if they do not have strong local support; this is essential if the borough
is to dam the tide of car users. Whilst accountability may weaken under
Camden Council's imminent new political cabinet system, with strong and
visionary leadership this change could prove a blessing in disguise if nimby
protests can be ignored.

Perhaps CCC should put up a few well placed candidates in next year's local
elections whose main theme is motor traffic & road danger reduction. Who
knows, we could sweep the board and before our electors knew it have an
ambitious programme of residential road closures in place. Whilst there
might be a bit of a fuss initially, home owners would see their properties
rise in value once rat running was stopped, rediscover the pleasures of
local shopping, watch their kids frolic in the street outside... only the
most addicted of car users would want to reverse the closures.
Paul Gasson, CCC Coordinator


Newsgroup migration complete
After 3 years with its former 'Listbot' server, all subscribers to CCC's
newsgroup should have now been migrated to a new Yahoo based group. You may
modify your newsgroup setting (eg to receive daily or weekly newsgroup
'digests') by visiting our newsgroup's home page.

Our newsgroup home page is at:
http://groups.yahoo..com/group/CamdenCyclingCampaign
To send mails to the CCC newsgroup, the email address is:
CamdenCyclingCampaign@...
All emails you receive from the newsgroup will have the subject header
preceeded by the text "[CCC]".

If you experience any difficulties as a result of our migration to Yahoo
please email me: paulgasson@...


CCC Rides

Saturday 25 August­Monday 27 August
East Anglia Bank Holiday Tour
About 100 miles over 3 days, staying in B&Bs. Moderate-pace ride in gentle
countryside on quiet roads with plenty to see, also taking in some ferries.
Starts and finishes at Liverpool Street Station. Necessary to book with
David by 10 August. David 020-7431-2964 david@...

Sunday 30 September
Kentish Hop 35 miles, figure of 8 ride, Camden to borders of Kent via
interesting byways, incorporating parts of Sustrans "Waterlink Way"
traffic-free path. Easy pace, return by train if tired. Meet Hampstead Old
Town Hall, Haverstock Hill at 11.30 am. David 020-7431-2964
david@...


Exceeding the speed limit still widespread
Government Press Release TR-013, 26 July 2001
Latest figures show that the percentage of vehicles exceeding the speed
limit remains high on all types of road.
The main features of new statistics are:
More than half of all cars on motorways and dual carriageways travelled
faster than the speed limit; 55 per cent of those surveyed on motorways
exceeded 70 mph and 17 per cent were travelling in excess of 80 mph.
On urban roads with a 30 mph speed limit, 66 per cent of cars exceeded that
limit, 32 per cent travelling faster than 35 mph. On 40 mph roads 25 per
cent of cars exceeded the limit, with 7 per cent exceeding 45 mph.
Motorcycles were the vehicles most likely to be speeding on 40 mph urban
roads; 36 per cent exceeded the speed limit, 21 per cent by more than 5 mph.
On 30 mph roads, 35 per cent of motorcycles were travelling at more than 35
mph.
The survey also reveals a high incidence of speeding by Heavy Goods
Vehicles. On urban 30 mph roads, 54 per cent of 2-axle HGVs exceeded the
speed limit, 19 per cent by more than 5 mph. On major, non-urban single
carriageway roads, 76 per cent of articulated HGVs were exceeding their 40
mph limit (27 per cent by more than 10 mph), and their average speed was
about the same as for cars (for which the limit on these roads is 60 mph).
The proportion of cars exceeding the speed limit in 30 mph zones has fallen
slightly in the last 4 years. But overall, average speeds have changed
little.


Chain Links

Bicycles chained to these railings will be removed
http://www.whatshouldiputonthefence.com/index.php
This web site site now has a cult following, and was started by a cyclist
who was taken aback when the railings in Marylebone where he regularly
locked his bike were defaced with a notice stating that 'bicycles chained to
these railings will be removed'.
Being of an imaginitive disposition he has experimented to see what happens
when other items are locked to the fence. The fridge door attracted much
interest, but many others including the teapot and Lucky the tiger
disappeared quickly.

The importance of wearing a cycle helmet in the bath.
http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/Archive/Article/0,4273,4010624,00.html

An article in the New Statesman suggests we should welcome traffic
congestion
http://www.consider.net/forum_new.php3?newTemplate=OpenObject&newTop=2001072
30017&newDisplayURN=200107230017


A Bicycling Mystery: Head Injuries Piling Up
New York Times Sun 29/7/01.
By JULIAN E. BARNES

Millions of parents take it as an article of faith that putting a
bicycle helmet on their children, or themselves, will help keep them
out of harm's way.

But new data on bicycle accidents raises questions about that. The
number of head injuries has increased 10 percent since 1991, even as
bicycle helmet use has risen sharply, according to figures compiled
by the Consumer Product Safety Commission. But given that ridership
has declined over the same period, the rate of head injuries per
active cyclist has increased 51 percent just as bicycle helmets have
become widespread.

What is going on here? No one is very sure, but safety experts stress
that while helmets do not prevent accidents from happening, they are
extremely effective at reducing the severity of head injuries when
they do occur. Almost no one suggests that riders should stop wearing
helmets, which researchers have found can reduce the severity of
brain injuries by as much as 88 percent.

Still, with fewer people riding bicycles, experts are mystified as to
why injuries are on the rise. "It's puzzling to me that we can't find
the benefit of bike helmets here," said Ronald L. Medford, the
assistant executive director of the safety commission's hazard
identification office.

Some cycling advocates contend that rising numbers of aggressive
drivers are at fault, while others suggest that many riders wear
helmets improperly and do not know the rules of the road. Some
transportation engineers say there are not enough safe places to ride.

Many specialists in risk analysis argue that something else is in
play. They believe that the increased use of bike helmets may have
had an unintended consequence: riders may feel an inflated sense of
security and take more risks.

In August 1999, Philip Dunham, then 15, was riding his mountain bike
in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park in North Carolina and went
over a jump on a trail. As he did, his back tire kicked up, the bike
flipped over and he landed on his head. The helmet he was wearing did
not protect his neck; he was paralyzed from the neck down.

Two years later, Philip has regained enough movement and strength in
his arms to use a manual wheelchair. He has also gained some
perspective. With the helmet he felt protected enough to ride
off-road on a challenging trail, in hindsight perhaps too safe.

"It didn't cross my mind that this could happen," said Philip, now
17. "I definitely felt safe. I wouldn't do something like that
without a helmet."

In the last nine years, 19 state legislatures have passed mandatory
helmet laws. Today, such statutes cover 49 percent of American
children under 15.

And even some professionals have embraced helmets. While a majority
of the riders in the Tour de France have worn helmets infrequently,
Lance Armstrong, the American cyclist favored to win the race today,
wore a helmet through most of the race.

Altogether, about half of all riders use bike helmets today, compared
with fewer than 18 percent a decade ago, the first year the safety
commission examined helmet use.

During the same period, overall bicycle use has declined about 21
percent as participation in in-line skating, skateboarding and other
sports has increased, according to the National Sporting Goods
Association, which conducts an annual survey of participation in
different sports. Off-road mountain biking is often considered more
risky than ordinary bicycling, but it is unlikely to account for the
recent increase in bicyclists' head injuries. Participation in
off-road mountain biking has declined 18 percent since 1998, the
association said.

Even so, bicyclists suffered 73,750 head injuries last year, compared
with 66,820 in 1991, according to the safety commission's national
injury surveillance system, with the sharpest increase coming in the
last three years. Children's head injuries declined until the
mid-1990's, but they have risen sharply since then and now stand near
their 1991 levels even with fewer children riding bikes.

The safety commission is now investigating why head injuries have
been increasing. Officials hope that by examining emergency room
reports more closely and interviewing crash victims, they can find
out if more of the injuries are relatively minor, and how many people
suffered head injuries while wearing helmets. Some bicycling
advocates have questioned the statistics on participation in
bicycling, and the commission plans to re-examine those as well.

Dr. Richard A. Schieber, a childhood injury prevention specialist at
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the leader of a
national bicycle safety initiative, said public health officials were
realizing that in addition to promoting helmet use, safety officials
must teach good riding skills, promote good driving practices and
create safer places for people to ride.

"We have moved the conversation from bicycle helmet use to bicycle
safety," Dr. Schieber said. "Thank God that the public health world
is understanding there is more to bicycle safety than helmets."

Promoting bicycle helmets without teaching riders about traffic laws
or safe riding practices can encourage a false sense of security,
according to several risk experts. Helmets may create a sort of
daredevil effect, making cyclists feel so safe that they ride faster
and take more chances, said Mayer Hillman, a senior fellow emeritus
at the Policy Studies Institute in London.

"You would be well advised to wear a helmet provided you could
persuade yourself it is of little use," Dr. Hillman said.

One parallel, risk experts said, is anti-lock brakes. When they were
introduced in the 1980's, they were supposed to reduce accidents, but
government and industry studies in the mid-1990's showed that as
drivers realized their brakes were more effective they started
driving faster, and some accident rates rose.

Insurance companies have long been familiar with the phenomenon,
which they call moral hazard. Once someone is covered by an insurance
policy there is a natural tendency for that person to take more
risks. Companies with workers' compensation insurance, for instance,
have little incentive to make their workplaces safer. To counter such
moral hazard, insurers may give discounts to companies that reduce
hazardous conditions in their factories, said Robert Hartwig, chief
economist for the Insurance Information Institute.

"People tend to engage in risky behavior when they are protected," he
said. "It's a ubiquitous human trait."

Even cyclists who discount the daredevil effect admit that they may
ride faster on more dangerous streets when they are wearing their
helmets.

On May 5, Noah Budnick, a 24- year-old New York resident, was wearing
a helmet and cycling on Avenue B in Manhattan when he had to pull out
from the side of the street to avoid a double-parked car and a
taxicab idling behind it. As he moved to the left, the cab pulled
out, striking Mr. Budnick. He broke his fall with his hands and did
not hit his head on the ground, but the accident left him with a deep
cut on his leg and a badly strained knee.

Although the cab was at fault for the accident, Mr. Budnick said, if
he had been riding more slowly he might not have had the accident.

"I probably would have ridden more cautiously and less aggressively
without the helmet," he said. "I don't know if I would ride in
Manhattan at the speed I was going."

Still, many cycling advocates contend that it is not bicyclists but
drivers who are more reckless. Distractions like cell phones have
made drivers less attentive, they say, and congestion is making roads
more dangerous for cyclists. They also believe that some drivers of
sport utility vehicles and other trucks simply drive too close to
cyclists.

Brendan Batson, a 16-year-old high school sophomore in central Maine,
had been knocked off the road twice by drivers, so as he entered the
home stretch of a 60-mile ride on May 26, he was wearing his helmet.
But as he passed through Norridgewock, Me., riding along the shoulder
of a rural highway, a pickup truck struck him from behind. It hit
Brendan with enough force to rip the helmet from his head, the straps
gouging his face before tearing off. Brendan was dragged along the
road, past a friend he was cycling with, then thrown to the side. He
was killed instantly.

It is difficult to show statistically that drivers have become more
reckless in the last decade. The percentage of fatal bicycle
accidents that involved cars has declined, falling from 87 percent in
1991 to 83 percent in 1998, according to the C.D.C.

Thom Parks, a vice president in charge of safety for the helmet maker
Bell Sports, said safety standards could be upgraded and helmets
could be designed to meet them. But that would make helmets heavier,
bulkier and less comfortable. "There are limits to what a consumer
would accept," Mr. Parks said, adding that if helmets became bigger,
fewer people might wear them.

Dr. James P. Kelly, a neurologist and a concussion expert at
Northwestern University Medical School, said that even as helmets
were currently designed, patients who were wearing them when they
were injured were much better off than those who were not.

"Bicycle helmet technology is the best we have for protecting the
brain," Dr. Kelly said. "The helmets serve the function of an air
bag."

But the most effective way to reduce severe head injuries may be to
decrease the number of accidents in the first place.

"Over the past several decades, society has come to equate safety
with helmets," said Charles Komanoff, the co-founder of Right of Way,
an organization that promotes the rights of cyclists and pedestrians.
"But wearing a helmet does not prevent crashes."


Cycling in the Local Papers

OAP paperboy, 69, dies from bike crash
Ham & High 3/8/01
A PENSIONER who was knocked off his bicycle while delivering newspapers has
died in hospital.
Dennis Howard, 69, who lived in Lyndhurst Road, Hampstead, suffered serious
head injuries when he collided with a parked Vauxhall van on Tuesday last
week.
The accident happened in Church Row at the junction with Heath Street while
Mr Howard, a former motorbike racer and author, was out on his regular
morning paper round.
It is thought that he may have been thrown from his bicycle by an open door
on the van. He was discovered shortly afterwards by an off-duty policeman.
Mr Howard, who had lived with his wife, Laura, in Old Conduit House for more
than 40 years, was taken to the Royal Free Hospital, in Hampstead where he
died on Tuesday.
Staff at the Hampstead newsagents where he worked yesterday paid tribute to
the much-loved newspaper delivery man.
Naimesh Patel, who runs Hampstead Newsagents in Holly Hill with his brother,
Jaymie, said that Mr Howard had completed his paper round every morning on
his bicycle for more than 25 years "like clockwork".
He said: "Everyone here is really shocked and cut up. He was a real
character - a very funny man and a real friend."
Police have appealed for witnesses to the accident, which happened at about
6.50am. Anyone with information is urged to call 020-7321 9943.


Cyclists 'could take over the Heath'
Camden Chronicle 2/8/01
CYCLISTS could dominate Hampstead Heath if they're given more paths,
community leaders warn.
Plans by the Corporatlon of London to increase cycle paths, maaang it easier
for cyclists to cross the heath, have sparked uproar from residents who say
it could become a new commuter network.
Brian Seddon of the Heath and Hampstead Society, said:
"I personally am very concerned about the prospect of more cyclists on the
heath. The whole point of Hampstead Heath is that it's supposed to be a
little piece of countryside. But if people start using it as a short cut to
get to work it'll become just another urban park.
"So far the cyclists have not shown sufficient responsibility to be given
these extra paths. They are very disobedient and there is a hard core group
who don't stick to the paths and break the speed limit. This presents a big
danger to pedestrians and it can be a real worry for little old ladies going
for a stroll to have a cyclist speeding towards them"
David Arditti of the Camden Cychng Campaign, said: "We suspect that the
Heath and Hampstead Society want to ban cycling from the heath altogether.
"What were proposing isn't a major change - its some cycle paths linking the
current ones to make it easier to cross the heath. We think the heath should
be a place where families can teach their children how to ride. Because the
paths are so hilly we don't think any commuters will be using them to get to
work.
"The campaign does not condone irresponsible cycling behaviour and we would
like to set up education programmes to help prevent this. We think the heath
is big enough for the both of us - cyclists and pedestrians."
A Corporation of London spokesman said: "Our consultation document on the
plans was sent out to 2000 different heath users and the process ended this
week. We will be considering the views of everyone who takes part when we
put together our proposals."


Give us a day that is really car-free
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
I WAS disappointed to read that Camden Councii has given up plans to close
streets in Highgate for the European Car Free Day on Saturday, September 22.
Last year's event at Seven Dials in Covent Garden was a great success and
deserved to be followed by a much larger event. A car-free day must be a day
where a whole community gives up the use of the car for at least a few
hours.
I believe that only a relative small percentage of Camden residents were
aware that something was happening at Seven Dials last year.
Last year's event probably did not dissuade a single person from using the
car. It is interesting that Camden is actually organising one of the major
events for London 'matched' only by Ken Livingstone's plan to close Tower
Bridge. In the meantime, other European town centres will be enjoying a real
carfree day.
This year Camden Cycling Campaign will again have a stall at Seven Dials and
will begin a campaign for a Real Car Free Day for Sunday, September 22,
2002. I hope all CNJ readers will resolve not to drive this September 22.
STEFANO CASALOTTI BeIsize Avenue


Bikes are a danger
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
I FIND it difficult to imagine a more spurious, dangerous and deceptive
argument than Mr David Arditti's last week, for a commuters' cycling "rat
run" per se along the pathway that runs from Nassington Road to Highgate
Road (Making best use of Heath's
paths, July 19). He uses the emotive ploy of schoolchildren being forced to
cycle on to various busy high roads. But a different picture emerges if
seasonal and weather changes plus school holidays are taken into account -
that the pathway is little used during weekday mornings.
He has also overlooked the adjacent children's playground where toddlers of
unpredictable reactions enter and exit all day, every day.
To state the obvious, a bicycle cannot be heard! It is this fact, that
creates the danger to any walker, of whatever age, who unexpectedly makes
the wrong movement at the wrong time!
RONALD SHEPHERD, Mansfield Road.


Cycling needs a spin job
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
I AM writing to thank Katherine Watts Harvey for her letter (Cyclists are
not Heath vandals, CNJ,July26).
Having followed arguments on this topic for the past few weeks, my
conclusion is that there seems to be a phobia where cyclists are concerned.
This is interesting, as I am the one who has been knocked off my bike by
cars and pedestrians quite a few times in the last 24 years. Could it be
because there are never any advertisements - on TV, radio, magazines or
newspapers - about the benefits of cycling? Apart from lip service, how much
support has the Department of Transport given to cyclists?
Why is it that only Camden Council positively acknowledges the need for
cycle lanes? Why couldn't all the London boroughs get together and link up
substantial lanes?
JAMILA B. Y. BERNAT Malda Vale


Can't report accident with a no-licence-plate cyclist
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
I WAS very distressed to read the letters about the proposed cycle track in
Guilford Street (Cycle track is no danger to kids, There have been no
crashes between cars and people, CNJ, July 26). Both were excruciatingly
cavalier about the safety of children using the safest and most popular
playground for children in south Camden.
Both cyclists and children have a poor sense of the relative speed of the
other party. In addition, children are unpredictable and often risk-takers.
The whole venture seems to be predicated on Camden's attempts to gain green
credentials. It has invested in what must have been a very expensive
programme of cycle tracks that would be admirable were it not for the
congestion and pollution that arises from traffic having either to take
circuitous routes or to wait in line spewing out fumes in the resulting
single lane routes.
As for the self-satisfied boasting about the low rates of accidents
involving cycles, does nobody know how difficult it is to report such an
accident? I have been knocked down three times by bicycles, once badly
enough to go to hospital. No identification is required and no insurance is
available.
I would like Camden to tell us the cost of the prograrnme and give us
comparative costs of investments to make our roads safer for our children.
J A ROBERTS, Coram Street

This sport of speed a danger for the Heath
Tough to control mountain biking
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
WHEN we speak of the cycling on the Heath I wonder how many of you really
understand the problem? I speak as a lifelong cyclist and onetime serious
mountain biker.
Are you aware that mountain bikes are more than capable of reaching speeds
of 60mph going downhill off-noad? And are near silent when doing so?
Mountain bikes typically have 21 gears, which take time to master, which in
turn will involve a lot of looking down at the chain wheels to see what they
are doing (rather than on what lies ahead). Riding a mountain bike with any
degree of skill is far harder than, for instance, a road bike.
The majority of riders are hopelessly inexperienced, have no idea of the
limitations of their brakes in the whole range of situations diiferent
weather can create, aren't especially interested in any other Heath users,
and will not easily be able to comprehend the concept of allowing for other
people's mistakes.
Think for a moment about blind spots, the long meadow grass, the tangled
undergrowth and trees. Sunbathers, bird watchers, nature lovers, the
elderly, children, dogs as well as walkers are often invisible until you are
right on top of them, and by then it's too late. Dogs are not the only
creatures to freeze or jump the wrong way when confronted with 90 kilos of
mountain biker travelling at 40mph appearing out of nowhere - people behave
this way too.
How many mountain bikers do you suppose will be happy with, say, a 15mph
speed limit? And who do you suggest will enforce it? You do realise we are
talking about a sport where speed is paramount. How many will be insured
against any damage they may do and, again, how will you enforce that?
How will you decide which areas are permitted and which are not - the Heath
is a very, very small area of land to a mountain biker - for many of them,
nothing less than unlimited and unrestricted access will do. This is real
thin-end-of-the wedge stuff.
Mountain bikers already range about the Heath, although in relatively
limited numbers at present. This could change. Is this, in the same way that
the area behind Jack Straw's Castle is for male homosexuals, going to be yet
another fait accompli? In other words, they are there and can't be stopped;
so we'll have to live with it?
As many have said in your letters page of late: the Heath is for everybody.
It is lamentable that there are not more places in and around London where
mountain biking can take place (although Epping Forest is one option), and
it is a fact that not all bikers are vandals, but as with the
gay-sex-in-public places problem, this idea, if it goes forward, will result
in the majority not only being made miserable, but also being placed in
considerable danger of the very real, and not the imagined, variety. I
strongly counsel against it.
TARQUIN KYLE Oppidans Road, NW3


Dirt bikers we saw did not cause damage
Cyclists are not Heath vandals
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
AS the wife of an American ex-professional cyclist living on Parliament
Hill, I have followed the issue of off-road cycling on Hampstead Heath with
genuine interest.
WAWaugh (Keep those bikes in line, July 19) said one shouldn't "negotiate
with vandals". My husband and I recently met some of these "vandals" while
walking withour children through Sandy Heath. They were polite, motivated
and provided a group of onlookers, including our family, with several hours
of exciting entertainment. Their 'jumps' were hardly damaging to the woods,
as the
cyclists had piled up loose dirt from which to launch their bicycles into
the air.
We could not believe that they risked being arrested for simply riding their
bicycles in the wood - one young boy made a valid point about the gay
community being given free reign to partake in open sexual activity in the
woods. Our family has unfortunately witnessed this type of activity on the
Heath and it is most unpleasant.
The authorities need to get some perspective on this issue, before
criminalising any more young people for bicycle riding.
In the States, the NORBA organisation has made great inroads by working with
park authorities to provide proper bicycle taails in park space.
We were appalled at the state of Sandy Heath last week, after seeing a large
group of school children running riot. The following day we were very
surprised to see the off-road "vandals" collecting these sweet wrappers with
their trash-bags.
And there is the issue of local residents breaking glass at the top of cycle
trails - on Thursday we saw an old man smashing milk boffles over bicycle
jumps.
How much damage did the park rangers do by driving a mechanised digger
through Sandy Heath to knock down the bicycle jumps? Who are the real
vandals here?
WA Waugh, please get this issue into perspective, before you lose sight of
the importance of supporting young peoplc's sporting endeavours.
We're continually told via the media that boredom and the lack of leisure
activities are critical reasons for young people getting into trouble with
drugs and petty crime.
So why not support these young people, instead of seeking to ban them?
KATHERINE WATTS HARVEY Parliament Hill,


We should support youths
Camden New Journal Letters 2/8/01
IN a recent letter about off road cycling on Sandy Heath, Martin Humphery of
the Heath and Hampstead Society said it was unacceptable for any group to
have any part of the Heath "set aside" for their exclusive use.
So, it's acceptable for the gay community to use a large area (including a
bathing lake) for cottaging; with a yearly cleanup bill of £100,000? But
it's unacceptable for young people to ride bicycles off-road? For trying to
exercise and have fun we risk being arrested and getting criminal records.
Double standards perhaps?
Very few people walk through the area where we cycle. Do not confuse us with
the idiots who speed down the main cycle path in Hampstead Heath itself. As
for Sandy Heath being "sensitive", until 200 years ago it was a sand mine.
We have uncovered broken glass, litter and tin cans - hardly a sensitive
natural area!
Hampstead Heath is an important leisure resource for all Londoners,
including cyclists; it simply needs proper management. At a time when many
young people are involved in drug abuse and petty crime, authorities are
recognising the importance of supporting young people's sporting activities.
So Mr Humphery, where exactly are we supposed to ride our bicycles?
There's a great green space in north London called Sandy Heath - sorry
that's your backyard!
ROB COLE London Dirt Jumping Association


Pedestrians' protection an added advantage
Cycle track is no danger to kids
Camden New Journal Letters 26/7/01
The new cycle track planned for Guilford Street or Sidmouth Street is one of
the most important short-term Solutions to London's desperate transport
crisis.
Although cycling is not for everyone, there is an overwhelming case for
ensuring that people who do want to cycle can do so in reasonable safety,
which is the aim of this cycle track. Improving public transport will take
many years; perhaps decades in the case of the Tube. But cycling and walking
can be promoted very easily by providing the right facilities. Camden
Council deserves congratulations for being the first borough in London to
adopt a serious strategy for making cycling attractive to more people by
building high-quality, continuous routes with separation from fast-moving
motor traffic where appropriate. This type of track is commonly seen on the
continent and is much more effective than the painted lines loved by so many
local councils in Britain.
A short experimental cycle track on Royal College Street has proved to be an
immense success and has tripled the number of cyclists using that route.
Camden Council is currently building a much longer cycle track through the
Fitzrovia and Bloomsbury areas. Eventually it should be possible for the
track to form a circular route around Central London with links to
residential areas as other boroughs follow Camden's lead. It is the
eastwards section of this track that has attracted concerns from Frank
Dobson MP on behalf of Coram's Field playground.
Camden Cycling Campaign understands the concerns expressed and has outlined
a number of potential solutions to the problem of ensuring better safety on
pedestrian crossings outside the entrance to Coram's Fields. Mr Dobson's
main concern, as he expressed to us in our meeting with him last week, was
an outline design drawing from Camden's consultants which showed the
crossing without the present central pedestrian 'refuge'. We fully agree
with Mr Dobson that the refuge should remain.
Clearly it would be difficult to sustain a serious case that having a cycle
track next to the pavement is more dangerous than having motor vehicles
passing right by the pavement edge.
Far from being a threat to Coram's Fields and its users, the proposed cycle
track will bring major benefits to the children of the area and deserves the
support of the board of Coram's Fields.
PAUL GANNON Camden Cycling Campaign


There have been no crashes between cars and people
This headline clearly should have read 'There have been no crashes between
cyclists & pedestrians'
Camden New Journal Letters 26/7/01
I FOUND the piece by Catherine Etoe (MP slams 'dangerous' cycle plans, July
19) to be well balanced, representing both sides of the debate.
I would, however, like to clarity the last statement: "Eight cyclists and
seven pedestrians have been injured in Guilford Street in the last three
years". Of the seven pedestrian casualties, six were in collision with a
car, taxi or goods vehicle, and one was in collision
with a motorcycle. All eight pedal cycle casualties were the result of a
collision with a car, taxi or goods vehicle.
There are no reported accidents involving a collision between pedestrians
and pedal cyclists.
ALEX DJAN, Transport Engineering Team Manager Environment Department, Camden
Council


Hundreds of crimes take place on Heath
Ham & High 27th July 2001
A TOTAL of 331 crimes were reported on Hampstead Heath last year, according
to new figures compiled by the Corporation of London.
A further 589 bye-law offences were recorded by the Heath Constabulary
between April 2000 and March 2001. Four hundred and seven were cycling
offences.
Two cyclists were prosecuted for bye-law breaches and six were given written
warnings.
Figures reported to the Hampstead Heath Management Committee on Monday
showed that 50 of the 331 crimes reported to the Met police were for public
order offences.
Forty missing persons were reported, together with 35 vehicle crimes and 32
thefts.
Seventeen arrests were made - five for vehicle crime and four for robbery.
Two people were given formal warnings for sex acts and one person was warned
for breaching the peace.
Twenty-five members of the public reported injuries and emergency
helicopters landed on the Heath 10 times to take patients to the Royal Free
Hospital, in Pond Street.
Jenny Adams, Corporation director of open spaces, has asked for a review of
security and patrol arrangements to be carried out.
The management committee asked Corporation officers to compare the figures
with previous years and to provide more detailed statistics.


Bar-otomy

Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
 


One of the great things about travelling by bike is the amazing repertoire of new experiences waiting to be enjoyed.

A first for me tonight was my aluminium handlebar snapping (just at the point it meets the stem bracket) on my Brompton folding bike. I had no warning that it was going to fail. Fortunately I was travelling at low speed, having just joined Royal College Street from the canal towpath. A conveniently parked car enabled me to come to rest and remain upright.
If it had happened 30 seconds earlier and I would have fallen into the canal.

Has anyone else experienced any major bike failures which could (or did) have serious consequences?

Paul

P.S. Don't forget our monthly meeting is this coming Monday at 7.30 pm, Castlehaven Community Centre.


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Jane Boardman <boardmanjane@...>
 

i had a pedal crank snapping in the middle of the adelaide road/primrose hill cross roads some years ago. the motorists thoughtfully drove around me and an elderly west indian man 'walking out' with an equally elderly white woman raced at two miles an hour to assist me which was very heart warming. few bodily injuries but deep and lasting damage to my dignity. jane

on 9/8/01 7:14 pm, Paul Gasson at paulgasson@... wrote:


One of the great things about travelling by bike is the amazing repertoire of new experiences waiting to be enjoyed.

A first for me tonight was my aluminium handlebar snapping (just at the point it meets the stem bracket) on my Brompton folding bike. I had no warning that it was going to fail. Fortunately I was travelling at low speed, having just joined Royal College Street from the canal towpath. A conveniently parked car enabled me to come to rest and remain upright.
If it had happened 30 seconds earlier and I would have fallen into the canal.

Has anyone else experienced any major bike failures which could (or did) have serious consequences?

Paul

P.S. Don't forget our monthly meeting is this coming Monday at 7.30 pm, Castlehaven Community Centre.

To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
CamdenCyclingCampaign-unsubscribe@...



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Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Wunohsix <wunohsix@...>
 

A couple of years ago a slightly dodgy bottom bracket seized up in the middle
of the Archway one-way -- in the middle of the traffic, going north just opposite
the pub. It all literally ground to a halt. Waited until all the traffic had whizzed past
either side of me and dragged the bike to the side of the road.
 
Keith

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Thursday, August 09, 2001 8:14 PM
Subject: [CCC] Bar-otomy
Has anyone else experienced any major bike failures which could (or did) have serious consequences?

Paul
 


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Roger Mason <roger.mason@...>
 

I had a crank (to be more accurate, two in succession) that failed on my Chinese bike.  While I was riding along a busy street in Peking a pedal suddenly stopped turning the front sprocket.  I reached the roadside by judiciously pressing on the other good pedal, while scores of Chinese rode past impassively.  Breakdowns are apparently quite frequent.  Whacking the cotter pin (remember them?) did no good because the hole in the crank had enlarged, so a roadside repairer put on a new one for the equivalent of £1, an exorbitant price.  It only just lasted until I got home where my friendly local repairer replaced it with a good one for less money.  There are lots of roadside repairers who hang spare parts, tyres and inner tubes on a tree or lampost to advertise, so I could point to what I needed.  I was unlucky to encounter a rip-off merchant.
 
Roger Mason
 
PS I shall be in China again from 27 August to 11 January next year.  I'll go on receiving the group E-mail.

----- Original Message -----
Sent: 2001Äê8ÔÂ9ÈÕ 20:14 ÏÂÎç
Subject: [CCC] Bar-otomy


One of the great things about travelling by bike is the amazing repertoire of new experiences waiting to be enjoyed.

A first for me tonight was my aluminium handlebar snapping (just at the point it meets the stem bracket) on my Brompton folding bike. I had no warning that it was going to fail. Fortunately I was travelling at low speed, having just joined Royal College Street from the canal towpath. A conveniently parked car enabled me to come to rest and remain upright.
If it had happened 30 seconds earlier and I would have fallen into the canal.

Has anyone else experienced any major bike failures which could (or did) have serious consequences?

Paul

P.S. Don't forget our monthly meeting is this coming Monday at 7.30 pm, Castlehaven Community Centre.

To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
CamdenCyclingCampaign-unsubscribe@...



Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to the Yahoo! Terms of Service.


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Lionel Shapiro <lishapiro@...>
 

Last year, outside the Camden Town Hall, my cycle was stolen. If I had not noticed what had happened, I might have torn a ligament trying to pedal the Sheffield stand.


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Wunohsix <wunohsix@...>
 

----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, August 10, 2001 8:57 PM
Subject: Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Last year, outside the Camden Town Hall, my cycle was stolen. If I had not noticed what had happened, I might have torn a ligament trying to pedal the Sheffield stand.

The thought of just 'hopping on to the saddle' makes my eyes water.
 
"Think once, think twice, think 'where's my bike' "
 
Keith


Camden Cycling Campaign monthly meeting

Andrew N Cornwell <andrew.cornwell@...>
 

The Camden Cycling Campaign meets again this Monday 13 August at 7.30pm,
Castlehaven Community Centre, Hawley St, NW1. All cyclists welcome.

The Castlehaven Community Centre is one block away from Stables Market,
Camden Town, and has secure indoor cycle parking. A map of the venue is
here: http://www.greengas.u-net.com/CCCdiary.html#CastlehavenCCMap


AGENDA FOR THE AUGUST MEETING

(1) European Car Free Day 2001
(a) Practical arrangements for CCC participation
(b) CCC strategy and level of support for Camden Council's efforts,
including proposal for a petition to extend CFD in future years

(2) Seven Stations Link construction
(a) Torrington Place issues
(b) Consultation on routing for next stage

(3) Chalk Farm road
Camden Council's proposals for a cycle track and 'no right turn'

(4) Regent's Park
Report back on meeting with park authorities

(5) Camden Square proposed 20mph zone
Plans available for comment

(6) Any Other Business


CCC news update: More Heath Cycle Route Proposals, Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable

Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
 


Items in this bulletin:
  • More Cycle Route Proposals for Heath
  • Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable
  • Risk Compensation & Helmet Wearing
  • LCC's 2001 Awards
  • Rethink on road humps
  • Zen & Cycling
  • Cycling in the Local Press

Paul Gasson
Camden Cycling Campaign Co-ordinator
[Campaign home page: http://www.greengas.u-net.com/home.html
Previous updates can be found on our latest news web page at http://www.greengas.u-net.com/hotnews.htm
To send a message to everyone on this list, email to: CamdenCyclingCampaign@... ]


More Cycle Route Proposals for Heath
Two cyclists (who are not CCC members) have acheived generous coverage in this week's Ham & High (see Cycling in the Press) on their proposals for 3 major cycle track circuits in Hampstead Heath; their routes would more than double the current cycle route length to 6 miles.
These suggested routes have the advantage of making CCC's proposals which were recently consulted on look insignificant in comparison. Thus the Corporation of London might (despite the likely high proportion of negative consultation responses) be more likely to view our more modest suggestions favourably. On the other side of the coin this is bound to whip up even more controversey in the local press.
A large map reproduced from the Ham & High showing the routes can be found on our web site here:
http://www.greengas.u-net.com/HeathRoutesAug01.JPG


Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable
The Royal College Street cycle track has been half obstructed for the last few weeks with construction materials, and on some days contractors vehicles have totally blocked the track, rendering it unusable. The problem is being caused by contractors Gabriel, who are undertaking pavement renewal as part of Camden's ambitious Boulevard street environment improvement programme.
Note only are the contractors not providing any alternative facilities or signposted diversions for cyclists (remember that the 2 way track runs along a one way street), but their vehicles are damaging what were the pristine surfaces and beautifully constructed segregating islands.
CCC is not only concerned about the safety of cyclists and pedestrians during these works, but is also worried that  cyclists who have been forced to divert into different routes could take a long time to return.
We have complained to the council on a number of occasions, and are highly disappointed that the council cannot seem to bring about any improvements. Now one of our Committee members has taken a raft of photos which graphically show the damming evidence - see some of them here:
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS1.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS2.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS3.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS4.JPG
Pictures copyright Lionel Shapiro


Risk Compensation & Helmet Wearing
An exchange on risk compensation & helmet wearing between Diane C. Thompson, Robert S. Thompson, Frederick P. Rivara (internationally acknowledged as the principal exponents of cycle helmet wearing), and Mayer Hillman & John Adams. Published in 'Injury Prevention', June 2001.
See http://www.greengas.u-net.com/HelmetsByHillman.html


LCC's 2001 Awards
Do you have a nomination for any category in LCC's 2001 Awards?
  • Best Cycle Route
  • Best Cycle Facility (e.g. cycle crossing of a main road)
  • Most effective complementary activity (a project which encourages or facilitates cycling without involving engineering work)
Most cycle friendly new building development
Suggestions to CCC by 30th September, or LCC by Friday 5 October 2001.  


Rethink on road humps
Evening Standard 6/8/01
by David Williams, Motoring Editor

The heyday of the road hump may be over. Despite its huge popularity with transport planners and safety campaigners, new research reveals the devices send pollution levels from cars soaring. Humps - also known as speed cushions, sleeping policemen and ramps - were rigorously tested alongside other traffic calming devices to find whether they had an adverse effect on car emission levels.

Scientists found that while the humps do indeed slow motorists down and prevent accidents, they also constitute a health hazard.

The findings have triggered calls from motoring organisations for the devices to be phased out and replaced with more environment friendly calming devices instead.
With an estimated 20,000 to 30,000 humps in London, this could take many years.

Scientists tested vehicle emissions in residential streets across London and the South-East before calming measures were introduced, and then after. Locations included Walton-on-Thames, Sutton, Harrow, Slough, Bracknell, and Sandhurst.

Chicanes, pinch points and mini-roundabouts were all found to cause cars to emit more pollution from their exhausts, but it was the road hump that fared worst of all, sending emissions of carbon monoxide up by 82 per cent and hydrocarbons up by 65 per cent.

Emissions of toxic nitrogen oxide fumes from diesel cars rose by as much as 37 per cent, and particulates - linked with breathing disorders - rose by 30 per cent.
However at a "build-out", where the road is restricted with wider pavements, emissions were just 31 per cent for carbon monoxide and two per cent for hydrocarbons.

The detailed 94-page report by the Transport Research Laboratory, commissioned by the Department of Transport, repeatedly cites the road hump as the most pollution-boosting device of all. While the study found "severe" humps achieve the greatest accident savings because they slow traffic right down, the same effect means car engines have to work even harder to push the car forward again.
The study found that measures involving more moderate speed cushions - smaller "blocks" of asphalt - and horizontal deflections such as pinch points, result in smaller speed reductions and smaller rises in emissions.

It urges local authorities to "adopt a balanced approach" to traffic calming, saying: "In Air Quality Management Areas, where air pollution standards are frequently breached, particular attention would need to be given to the balance between reductions in injury accidents and increases in vehicle emissions."
The study concedes, however, that it is "very unlikely" the effects of traffic calming alone would result in poor local air quality.

It was in March 1990 that the then Transport Secretary Cecil Parkinson gave the go-ahead for councils to install sleeping policemen, signalling what many motorists interpreted as open warfare on their right to drive freely. Few devices have so split local communities or done more to polarise the views of motorists and safety campaigners.

Many householders in London have campaigned for humps in their own roads to slow or deter traffic. An equal number have campaigned against. Even those who welcome them in their own street complain about those in neighbouring roads - the ones they drive through on the way to work.

The scientists also found that at the test sites the speed of cars before traffic calming devices were installed was between 24mph and 33mph. Afterwards it speeds were reduced to between 14mph and 26mph, delivering a clear improvement to road safety.

For safety campaigners the arguments are compelling: the study says that for every one mph drop in speed there is a five per cent drop in injury accidents.

Today, at least one senior local government officer admitted the latest report is now forcing a major rethink. Pat Kent, director of strategic services at Lambeth council, which has installed numerous humps, said: "We will now be looking at how we can achieve a better balance between the need to calm traffic, cut accidents and keep emissions low.
"We now know that the level of emissions is closely linked with road humps following this report and are taking notice."

Another senior London local authority planner said: "There is no doubt this will have a major effect right across London and switch the emphasis away from road humps towards other forms of traffic calming. Authorities have already begun reconsidering - some may even now dig up humps and install more modern systems instead."

Rebecca Rees of the AA said: "To go over a hump, a car has to slow right down to a crawl, change gear and accelerate away. This uses more petrol and creates more fumes. While it won't seriously damage London's air quality overall, it does create more local pollution which is worrying.
"Humps have their place but authorities should use chicanes instead."

Kevin Delaney of the RAC Foundation said: "For years the UK government denied that speed humps added to pollution - now they have commissioned a study which proves it. Local authorities will be forced to radically rethink the way in which they tackle traffic calming."

The Association of London Government, however, is standing by the hump.
A spokesman said: "By reducing the amount of traffic travelling along a road, humps reduce overall pollution. It is a trade-off and there are important safety issues. If you have children rollerblading or cycling in a road then humps make it safer."


Zen & Cycling
From Shawn Gosieski in New Cyclist, Autumn 1988.

A Zen teacher saw five of his students returning from the market, riding their bicycles. When they arrived at the monastery and had dismounted, the teacher asked the students, "Why are you riding your bicycles?"

The first student replied, "The bicycle is carrying the sack of potatoes. I am glad that I do not have to carry them on my back!" The teacher praised the first student, "You are a smart boy! When you grow old, you will not walk hunched over like I do."

The second student replied, "I love to watch the trees and fields pass by as I roll down the path!" The teacher commended the second student, "Your eyes are open, and you see the world."

The third student replied, "When I ride my bicycle, I am content to chant nam myoho renge kyo." The teacher gave praise to the third student, "Your mind will roll with the ease of a newly trued wheel."

The fourth student replied, "Riding my bicycle, I live in harmony with all sentient beings." The teacher was pleased, and said to the fourth student, "You are riding on the golden path of non-harming."

The fifth student replied, "I ride my bicycle to ride my bicycle." The teacher sat at the feet of the fifth student and said, "I am your student!"



Cycling in the Local Press

Cyclists suggest three more paths for Heath
Proposals would create six miles of traffic-free bike routes
Ham & High 10/8/01
Chris Leggett

THREE new circular cycle routes should be set up on Hampstead Heath to encourage more bike riders to enjoy the open space, say two cyclists.
Cycling enthusiasts Rod Burgess and Gerry Bryson have drawn up their own plans to introduce additional cycle paths.
They hope the idea will be considered as part of public consultation on cycling on the Heath.

The first path would loop around West Heath, Sandy Heath and Parliament Hill Fields using the existing Millfield lane as a cross link. The second would go in and around the Kenwood estate - if permission was given by English Heritage which manages the stately home and grounds. The third route would integrate the Hampstead Heath Extension.
If all three options are taken up, the pair claim, it would allow six miles of traffic-free cycling for recreational purposes.

They intend to submit their ideas to the Corporation of London which manages the Heath and is carrying out public consultation on the possibility of increasing cycle routes on it.
The consultation follows a request from Camden Cycling Campaign to link four existing cycle paths to form a single route from the northwest to the south-east of the 791-acre heath.
At present, cyclists are permitted to travel along routes from Nassington Road to Highgate Road, East Heath car park to Millfield Lane, Spaniards Road to Millfield laane, and West Heath Road to North End Way.

Mr Burgess, 56, a university lecturer in urban planning who lives in Finchley Road, West Hampstead, believes that the current cycling provision is woefully inadequate".
He and Mr Bryson, 52, who lives in King Henry's Road, Primrose Hill, believe that cyclists should not be limited just to crossing the Heath.

Mr Burgess said: "More cyclists should be encouraged tonic the Heath for recreational purposes as well as transit. It would not be expensive and it would get people off the roads. At least one of these three paths should be set up as it would get more people using bikes."
Mr Burgess accepts that any attempt to increase cycle paths is likely to be met with opposition from other Heath users including walkers who resent the potential dangers of bike riding.
He said ³We should separate pedestrians and cyclists as much possible to reduce the contact between the two groups. We are not militant cyclists -just ordinary cyclists who want to help solve the problems. The concept of more cycle paths must be accepted as we are trailing so many other major cifies in the world."

The findings of the consultation exercise on cycle routes are due to be presented to the Corporation of London's Hampstead Heath Management Committee and Hampstead Heath Consultative Committee in the autumn.

See a map of the proposals here: http://www.greengas.u-net.com/HeathRoutesAug01.JPG


King's Cross cycle hell
Camden New Journal 9/8/01

IN his letter last week (Roadworks are going nowhere) Chris Fagg was right to draw attention to the appalling state of the road works in the King's Cross area. Many of the railed off works areas' are just longterm durnps for rubble and traffic cones. The chaos is worsened by the Boulevard scheme. The segregated cycle path along Royal College Street is being destroyed by contractors. Heavy lorries are damaging the surface and it is now impassible in the mornings because of vehicles parking on it. Cyclists and pedestrians are forced into the road.
It is time the contractors were made to make the areas safe for pedestrians and cyclists.
M R FARRANT Elaine Grove NW5


Curb two-wheel 'terrorists' now
Camden New Journal 9/8/01

CYCLISTS symbolise our self-centred times (Cycle track is no danger to kids, July 26). Indifferent to the rules of the road, contemptuous of red lights, zebra crossings and one-way streets, they permit no one to hinder their progress. Yet these terrorists on two wheels whinge vociferously when victims of their disregard for others complain.
Camden is encouraging these nihilists by prioritising construction of new cycle lanes. But regulation of urban cycling is long overdue. In the interests of safety and civility, we need:
1) To license all cyclists, with prior testing on the Highway Code.
2) To require all cycles to be registered and plated for identification.
3) Compulsory third party insurance.
David George, Judd St, WC1


Life & bikes of paperboy, 69.  Tributes to pensioner who died after crash on the round he had done for 20 years.
Ham & High 10/8/01
Bridget Galton

THE widow of a pensioner who was knocked off his bicycle while delivering newspapers has said she begged him to give up his moihing round.
Laura Howard said that her husband Dennis, 69, had planned to stop doing the gruelling 7am, seven-days-a-week paper round because he was struggling to carry the increasingly heavy weekend supplements. "When he started about 20 years ago he said it would put more tobacco in his pipe," she said. "He wanted to keep fit and active. "Quite some time ago, I said enough is enough and he should stop. He was going to give up but not as early as I would have wished. He would still be alive if he had listened to me."

Mr Howard suffered serious head injuries when he collided with a parked Vauxhall van in Heath Street, Hampstead, at around 7am on July 24. It is believed he was thrown from his bicycle by an open door on the van. He was taken to the Royal Free Hospital, in Hamp
stead, where he died on Tuesday last week without regaining consciousness. Mrs Howard said she was still "in a state of shock" over his death and anxious that any witnesses come forward to help police investigate the accident.

Born in Cologne, Germany, to a German father and an English mother, Mr Howard was raised in Wiltshire and educated at Stowe public school. He had a passion for vintage motorbikes and contnibuted for many years to motorcycle magazines in Britain and Germany as a freelance writer. A former TT rider, he also wrote three books on vintage
machines including The Kaleidoscope of Motorcycles. He owned two classic German Mz bikes, including one which he used to ride with French-born Mrs Howard in the sidecar.

His 69-year-old widow said they met at a hospital bail when she was working as a nurse. "It was love at first sight," she said. "He was a great, brilliant man, a real English gentleman. He had a great sense of humour - there was never a boring hour with him."
They lived for most of their 45-year marriage in Hampstead, moving into the listed Gothic Mansion, Old Conduit House, in Lyndhurst Terrace in 1960.

Naimesh Patel, who runs Hampstead Newsagents in Holly Hill where Mr Howard worked, said: "He was the most amaring bloke ever. Me and my brother never really knew our grandfather so he sort of adopted us. "He would bring his cup of tea up for a chat in the mornmgs and pop in during the day. He used to ride his old mot6rbike up and down Heath Street. Everyone who knew him thought he was a great character."

Mr Howard aiso leaves a sister, Audrey. His funeral will be held at Golders Green crematonum on Tuesday at l0.30am.


Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable

Andrea Casalotti <andrea@...>
 

The Royal College Street cycle track has been half obstructed for the last few weeks with construction materials, and on some days contractors vehicles have totally blocked the track, rendering it unusable. The problem is being caused by contractors Gabriel, who are undertaking pavement renewal as part of Camden's ambitious Boulevard street environment improvement programme 
 We have complained to the council on a number of occasions, and are highly disappointed that the council cannot seem to bring about any improvements. Now one of our Committee members has taken a raft of photos which graphically show the damming evidence - see some of them here: 
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS1.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS2.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS3.JPG
  • http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS4.JPG
 
 
This is appalling. Doesn't the Council have a statutory duty to provide safe alternatives? Does the contractor have a right to park on the cycle lane? Have they paid to block our right of way? If not, let's take them to court!
 
 
Andrea
 
 


Re: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable

Andrea Casalotti <andrea@...>
 

Thank you for providing some entertainment, Gerry.


This is just the self-serving, self-interested sort of comment that one
expects from the lunatic fringe of the Camden Cycling Campaign, which for
the past three or four years has worked constructively with the Council.
Self-interested? I hardly ever cycle there. (Disclosure: it is my brother's
regular route). I am concerned for those people who, attracted by the new
cycle lane, now have to cycle against the flow of a fast one-way street.

Some members of the CCC, such as Mr Casalotti may not have heard of
Boulevard, which frankly will benefit very many more people than a cycle
lane.
Gerry, you know very well that I am familiar with the Boulevard scheme.

It so happens that, rightly or wrongly,
That is exactly what we are trying to determine. Who has given them the
right temporarily to close a cycle lane?

Gabriels have blocked the
Seven Stations Route from time to time in order to carry out
their necessary
works. Lionel's photographs provided some evidence. Officers are aware
of this and have been speaking to Gabriels, who is a contractor
working for
the Council.
It doesn't seem that these conversation are very fruitful.

But really there is something serious amiss here. If Gabriel need to close
the cycle lane (and judging from the photographs, it seems that they do need
the space) than one of the road lanes needs to be converted to temporary
cycle lane.

I am quite sure that if Gabriels had been able to do it
another way they would have done.
If this is the case, then the Council is clearly and seriously at fault for
not providing a temporary cycle lane (which incidentally does not mean going
around the block: there is plenty of road space right next to the cycle
lane)


Mr Casalotti should remember that he is one of a tiny minority of Camden
residents, the majority of whom support the aims of Boulevard,
I don't understand how you got this idea that I am not in favour of
Boulevard. As everyone knows I strongly believe that pedestrians' needs
should come before cyclists' needs

and if it was
not for the Council that he wishes now to take to court there would be no
cycle route, segregated or otherwise in Royal College Street.
My comments clearly implied that I presumed it is the contractors who were
acting improperly. Your statement is almost an admission that it is the
Council who has a case to answer.

Goodwill is
rather important. Dear oh dear. It must be the silly season, Paul.
It seems that the silly season is all year round in Camden:

From squandering tax-payers money awarding courier work to higher-bidder
Parcelfarce to u-turning in Covent Garden, because a couple of street
closures inconvenience some taxi drivers.

Maybe the CCC can consider the selfishness of his attitude at it meeting.
Hey, I am talking about sharing.

It is quite simple: there are three lanes, one of which is a two way cycle
lane. Work needs to be carried out that necessitates the closure of the
cycle lane. Put a few plastic bollards and convert one of the car lanes into
cycle lanes. So we all share the available road space. Easy.

Doesn't sound selfish to me.

But maybe I am guilty because I have not been brainwashed by the motor lobby
in believing that the convenience of motorists is more important than the
safety of pedestrians and cyclists.

All the best,

Andrea

It reminds me of the residents of my ward who live next door to Hampstead
Heath but who object, each year, to a fairground which is there for one or
two weekends in a year.



Gerry Harrison
(one cyclist who is aware of the wider picture)

-----Original Message-----
From: Andrea Casalotti [mailto:andrea@...]
Sent: 13 August 2001 09:08
To: CamdenCyclingCampaign@...; Gerry Harrison
Subject: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable



The Royal College Street cycle track has been half obstructed for the last
few weeks with construction materials, and on some days
contractors vehicles
have totally blocked the track, rendering it unusable. The
problem is being
caused by contractors Gabriel, who are undertaking pavement
renewal as part
of Camden's ambitious Boulevard street environment improvement programme
We have complained to the council on a number of occasions, and
are highly
disappointed that the council cannot seem to bring about any improvements.
Now one of our Committee members has taken a raft of photos which
graphically show the damming evidence - see some of them here:


* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS1.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS2.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS3.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS4.JPG




This is appalling. Doesn't the Council have a statutory duty to
provide safe
alternatives? Does the contractor have a right to park on the cycle lane?
Have they paid to block our right of way? If not, let's take them
to court!


Andrea



Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy

Adrian Peter Toole <adrian@...>
 

Well I had a crank break on a bicycle in Holland. I'd cycled all day and
was up north somewhere near the dike across the Ijsselmeer. I had just
been saying ' How easy it is to cycle in Holland; see 100km no problem',
when crack and the thing fell to pieces.
No roadside repairers there, but when I finally got it back to the
station where I'd hired it, the repairer said 'It's one of those cheap
Chinese ones.' but still wanted to keep my deposit!


In message <008c01c121a8$79532900$7a7c7bd5@...>, Roger Mason
<roger.mason@...> writes
I had a crank (to be more accurate, two in succession) that failed
on my Chinese bike.  While I was riding along a busy street in
Peking a pedal suddenly stopped turning the front sprocket. 
I reached the roadside by judiciously pressing on the other good
pedal, while scores of Chinese rode past impassively.  Breakdowns
are apparently quite frequent.  Whacking the cotter pin (remember
them?) did no good because the hole in the crank had enlarged, so
a roadside repairer put on a new one for the equivalent of £1, an
exorbitant price.  It only just lasted until I got home where my
friendly local repairer replaced it with a good one for less
money.  There are lots of roadside repairers who hang spare parts,
tyres and inner tubes on a tree or lampost to advertise, so I could
point to what I needed.  I was unlucky to encounter a rip-off
merchant.
 
Roger Mason
 
PS I shall be in China again from 27 August to 11 January next
year.  I'll go on receiving the group E-mail.
----- Original Message -----
From: Paul Gasson
To: CCC newsgroup
Sent: 2001Äê8ÔÂ9ÈÕ 20:14 ÏÂÎç
Subject: [CCC] Bar-otomy

One of the great things about travelling by bike is the amazing
repertoire of new experiences waiting to be enjoyed.
A first for me tonight was my aluminium handlebar snapping (just
at the point it meets the stem bracket) on my Brompton folding
bike. I had no warning that it was going to fail. Fortunately I
was travelling at low speed, having just joined Royal College
Street from the canal towpath. A conveniently parked car enabled
me to come to rest and remain upright.
If it had happened 30 seconds earlier and I would have fallen
into the canal.
Has anyone else experienced any major bike failures which could
(or did) have serious consequences?
Paul
P.S. Don't forget our monthly meeting is this coming Monday at
7.30 pm, Castlehaven Community Centre.
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.
--
Adrian Peter Toole


Re: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable

Meade McCloughan <m.mccloughan@...>
 

I didn't know we had a lunatic fringe, not to mention that it was working
constructively with Camden Council. Explains some things, though . . .

Meade

----- Original Message -----
From: Andrea Casalotti <andrea@...>
To: Harrison, Gerry <gerry.harrison@...>; CamdenCyclingCampaign
<CamdenCyclingCampaign@...>
Cc: Taylor, Norman <Norman.Taylor@...>
Sent: 13 August 2001 15:54
Subject: [CCC] RE: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track
Unusable


Thank you for providing some entertainment, Gerry.


This is just the self-serving, self-interested sort of comment that one
expects from the lunatic fringe of the Camden Cycling Campaign, which
for
the past three or four years has worked constructively with the Council.


Re: [CCC] RE: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable

mirog@...
 

From Mick Farrant,
22, Elaine Grove


I am now compelled to use the Royal College Track to get to work at Kings
Cross because of the appaling state of the road between the two stations (St
Pancras Way). This is extremely dangerous to cyclists.

There is absolutely no need for the Gabriel's lorries to use the cycle track
for delivering pallets of paving stones as showed in Lionel's pictures. All
they need to do is unload onto small trolleys and wheel them onto the sites.
The unloading is causing damage to the track as the stilts (bracing posts)
from the lorries make indents. It is normal practice for such lorries to put
wooden blocks under the stilts.

I assume that it is Camden Council who are the main contractors. The
officers concerned should ensure that the blockages and damage do not occur.

When roads are closed the Council has to seek an order and publicise this.
Does not this have to be the case for a cycle lane ?

----- Original Message -----
From: Andrea Casalotti <andrea@...>
To: Harrison, Gerry <gerry.harrison@...>;
<CamdenCyclingCampaign@...>
Cc: Taylor, Norman <Norman.Taylor@...>
Sent: Monday, August 13, 2001 3:54 PM
Subject: [CCC] RE: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track
Unusable


Thank you for providing some entertainment, Gerry.


This is just the self-serving, self-interested sort of comment that one
expects from the lunatic fringe of the Camden Cycling Campaign, which
for
the past three or four years has worked constructively with the Council.
Self-interested? I hardly ever cycle there. (Disclosure: it is my
brother's
regular route). I am concerned for those people who, attracted by the new
cycle lane, now have to cycle against the flow of a fast one-way street.

Some members of the CCC, such as Mr Casalotti may not have heard of
Boulevard, which frankly will benefit very many more people than a cycle
lane.
Gerry, you know very well that I am familiar with the Boulevard scheme.

It so happens that, rightly or wrongly,
That is exactly what we are trying to determine. Who has given them the
right temporarily to close a cycle lane?

Gabriels have blocked the
Seven Stations Route from time to time in order to carry out
their necessary
works. Lionel's photographs provided some evidence. Officers are
aware
of this and have been speaking to Gabriels, who is a contractor
working for
the Council.
It doesn't seem that these conversation are very fruitful.

But really there is something serious amiss here. If Gabriel need to close
the cycle lane (and judging from the photographs, it seems that they do
need
the space) than one of the road lanes needs to be converted to temporary
cycle lane.

I am quite sure that if Gabriels had been able to do it
another way they would have done.
If this is the case, then the Council is clearly and seriously at fault
for
not providing a temporary cycle lane (which incidentally does not mean
going
around the block: there is plenty of road space right next to the cycle
lane)


Mr Casalotti should remember that he is one of a tiny minority of Camden
residents, the majority of whom support the aims of Boulevard,
I don't understand how you got this idea that I am not in favour of
Boulevard. As everyone knows I strongly believe that pedestrians' needs
should come before cyclists' needs

and if it was
not for the Council that he wishes now to take to court there would be
no
cycle route, segregated or otherwise in Royal College Street.
My comments clearly implied that I presumed it is the contractors who were
acting improperly. Your statement is almost an admission that it is the
Council who has a case to answer.

Goodwill is
rather important. Dear oh dear. It must be the silly season, Paul.
It seems that the silly season is all year round in Camden:

From squandering tax-payers money awarding courier work to higher-bidder
Parcelfarce to u-turning in Covent Garden, because a couple of street
closures inconvenience some taxi drivers.

Maybe the CCC can consider the selfishness of his attitude at it
meeting.

Hey, I am talking about sharing.

It is quite simple: there are three lanes, one of which is a two way cycle
lane. Work needs to be carried out that necessitates the closure of the
cycle lane. Put a few plastic bollards and convert one of the car lanes
into
cycle lanes. So we all share the available road space. Easy.

Doesn't sound selfish to me.

But maybe I am guilty because I have not been brainwashed by the motor
lobby
in believing that the convenience of motorists is more important than the
safety of pedestrians and cyclists.

All the best,

Andrea

It reminds me of the residents of my ward who live next door to
Hampstead
Heath but who object, each year, to a fairground which is there for one
or
two weekends in a year.



Gerry Harrison
(one cyclist who is aware of the wider picture)

-----Original Message-----
From: Andrea Casalotti [mailto:andrea@...]
Sent: 13 August 2001 09:08
To: CamdenCyclingCampaign@...; Gerry Harrison
Subject: Contractors Render Royal College Street Cycle Track Unusable



The Royal College Street cycle track has been half obstructed for the
last
few weeks with construction materials, and on some days
contractors vehicles
have totally blocked the track, rendering it unusable. The
problem is being
caused by contractors Gabriel, who are undertaking pavement
renewal as part
of Camden's ambitious Boulevard street environment improvement programme
We have complained to the council on a number of occasions, and
are highly
disappointed that the council cannot seem to bring about any
improvements.
Now one of our Committee members has taken a raft of photos which
graphically show the damming evidence - see some of them here:


* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS1.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS2.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS3.JPG

* http://www.greengas.u-net.com/RCSBlockageAug01LS4.JPG




This is appalling. Doesn't the Council have a statutory duty to
provide safe
alternatives? Does the contractor have a right to park on the cycle
lane?
Have they paid to block our right of way? If not, let's take them
to court!


Andrea



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CamdenCyclingCampaign-unsubscribe@...



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Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion

Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
 

I received amazing service when I wheeled the barless Brompton into
Simpsons Cycles on Friday morning for repair.

A concerned Brian (the owner) ordered new handlebars from Brompton, and
following surgery on Saturday morning it was ready for collection in the
afternoon.
And I didn't have to pay a penny, despite the bike being over 3 years old
(ie way outside any warranty period).

I believe Brompton dispatched the replacement handlebars free of charge, and
Simpson's donated their labour.
Perhaps I get better than average service due to my local cycling role?

Has anyone else had exceptionally good or bad service from cycle shops?

Paul


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion

nigelshindler <nshindler@...>
 

Paul: funnily enough I had a handlebar stem break on my Birdy some time
ago, and
again, although it was about two years old, Stuart at Bikefix got it
replaced
for me free, with no hassle at all. I think the manufacturers decided
it was a
poor welded joint (next to the hinge where the stem folds) and it goes
to show
that you must keep a very careful eye on aluminium frame components as
they are
prone to fatigue, particularly in heavily stressed regions.

In fact, as I also had series of cracked seatposts (also Al) on the
Birdy, I
eventually gave up riding it on the London roads every day, and went
back to my
old but unbreakable Specialized MTB.

By the way, I've also been very impressed by the service at Simpsons -
the last
time I had the brakes properly serviced on the Birdy, they did an
excellent job
on them.

Nigel.

Paul Gasson wrote:

I received amazing service when I wheeled the barless Brompton into
Simpsons Cycles on Friday morning for repair.

A concerned Brian (the owner) ordered new handlebars from Brompton, and
following surgery on Saturday morning it was ready for collection in the
afternoon.
And I didn't have to pay a penny, despite the bike being over 3 years old
(ie way outside any warranty period).

I believe Brompton dispatched the replacement handlebars free of charge, and
Simpson's donated their labour.
Perhaps I get better than average service due to my local cycling role?

Has anyone else had exceptionally good or bad service from cycle shops?

Paul

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Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion

Jane Boardman <boardmanjane@...>
 

i have always found simpson's very helpful and knowledgable. being specific
about what features you want in an item helps jane

on 14/8/01 8:26 am, Paul Gasson at paulgasson@... wrote:


I received amazing service when I wheeled the barless Brompton into
Simpsons Cycles on Friday morning for repair.

A concerned Brian (the owner) ordered new handlebars from Brompton, and
following surgery on Saturday morning it was ready for collection in the
afternoon.
And I didn't have to pay a penny, despite the bike being over 3 years old
(ie way outside any warranty period).

I believe Brompton dispatched the replacement handlebars free of charge, and
Simpson's donated their labour.
Perhaps I get better than average service due to my local cycling role?

Has anyone else had exceptionally good or bad service from cycle shops?

Paul



To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
CamdenCyclingCampaign-unsubscribe@...



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Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion

David Arditti <david@...>
 


Has anyone else had exceptionally good or bad service from cycle shops?
No, not in Camden.

I can, however, recommend McNulty's of Enniskillen, if you are ever in those
parts.

When on the CCC tour of Ireland (north) this June, the rim of my rear wheel
cracked (originally a Bikefix construction job, about 6 years ago). It was
alloy and had been worn through by the blocks. The tyre bulged out and
prevented further locomotion, though the wheel did not give way. The reason
this was a huge problem in the circumstances was that the wheel could not be
simply be replaced, if we could find a replacement, as it had been built
around the rare Sachs 7 speed gear hub, which I swear by. Therefore the
wheel had to be rebuilt with a new rim. Furthermore, we had little time to
spare, as each night's stop of the ride had already been booked, and the
stops were all about 40 miles apart. Fortunately, at that stage, we were
only 5 miles from Enniskillen, which is by far the largest town on the
"Kingfisher Cycle trail" (Sustrans), which we were following, and we were
booked into a B&B there.

By removing the rear brake blocks I was able to cautiously cycle it there.
Our landlady that night (who lived opposite the "Royal School" and sported a
blouse covered with busts of the Queen in two shades of white) directed me
to McNulty's the next morning, which is opposite the statue commemorating
the dead of the IRA attack there 10 years ago. The shop did not look
promising as it contained mainly motorbikes. However, we were assured they
were the region's principal cycle shop. I explained my predicament, and was
directed to the workshop at the back, where I found a man who was instantly
engaged by the challenge of solving this problem, and who immediately
devoted the rest of the working day to solving it. (Try getting a major job
done instantly like that in London).

He did not have a suitable rim, but he did have a wheel of the right size,
which he dismantled to get the rim off. He took my wheel apart and spent
most of the morning trying to construct a wheel using my hub and spokes and
the new rim. We went off to look round the castle. Coming back after he had
had his lunch, we found he had had to start again, as the plan had not
worked: the two rims had proved to be fractionally different in size and the
Bikefix spokes were too short. So he had to cut a new set of spokes to fit.
Considering that he said he hardly ever built a wheel these days, it was
surprising that he had such a huge stock of spokes of all types. Perhaps the
roads round there do them in. We went to the tourist information office to
see what unnecessary things we could buy, and came back with some t-shirts
sporting a Kingfisher and cycle route logo. About 4 pm he finished the job,
having decided unilaterally that various other components needed replacing,
such as the brakeblocks, and rear mudguard stays, and done all that. It was
at least as good as new. In the front of the shop another man sitting in a
cubbyhole with a calculator had seemingly the sole job of calculating bills.
This calculation took about another 15 minutes, and came to about £60
including the components, a demand they were very apologetic for. I can't
imagine a London shop doing the same job, in a longer time-period, for less
than twice that. So, as Meade would say, it was "good and bad". Since it was
going to wear through some time, it was good it was there.

At this stage we still had 43 miles to cycle on the route to the next booked
B&B. Enniskillen has a big one way-system (Irish towns generally lack these,
but it was obviously another way of emphasising the Britishness here) and,
confused by this, and the Sustrans map, on which you can never work out
which way is north, we cycled about 3 miles out in the wrong direction
initially, before coming back to the town centre and starting again the
right way. We decided to shortcut the official route, the only day on which
we made this concession, as in general Vivian would not put up with any
dilution of the proper scenic route, as she would then not have been able to
wear her t-shirt with integrity. However, Mike was getting impatient, as
Americans do, so we took main roads, avoiding the hills, reducing the
distance required to about 30 miles, and we did get to our destination about
8 pm, in time for supper.

End of adventure.

David (CCC rides co-ordinator)


Re: [CCC] Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion

mirog@...
 

As you say Simpsons is good.

----- Original Message -----
From: Paul Gasson <paulgasson@...>
To: CCC newsgroup <CamdenCyclingCampaign@...>
Sent: Tuesday, August 14, 2001 9:26 AM
Subject: [CCC] Bar-otomy : impressive conclusion



I received amazing service when I wheeled the barless Brompton into
Simpsons Cycles on Friday morning for repair.

A concerned Brian (the owner) ordered new handlebars from Brompton, and
following surgery on Saturday morning it was ready for collection in the
afternoon.
And I didn't have to pay a penny, despite the bike being over 3 years old
(ie way outside any warranty period).

I believe Brompton dispatched the replacement handlebars free of charge,
and
Simpson's donated their labour.
Perhaps I get better than average service due to my local cycling role?

Has anyone else had exceptionally good or bad service from cycle shops?

Paul



To unsubscribe from this group, send an email to:
CamdenCyclingCampaign-unsubscribe@...



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