Wednesday, 28 December 2011

Manchester Cycling Strategy - consultation drafts

Update: The second document was indeed an earlier draft with a different name and FoE have since deleted it from their Scribd pages.


These are two consultation documents that you won't find on the City Council's web site. They have been posted online by Manchester FoE .

The first is called an "Interim Strategy for Cycling in Manchester" and dated December 2011 and the second is called "A Strategy for Cycling in Manchester 2011-2015" and dated November 2011.

As far as I can work out they are two different attempts at the same document, and the council has just changed the working title. The documents appear to have been circulated to people who manage to attend the council's cycle forum.

Either way round, at a first glance the story seems to be yet more timid measures that won't have any real impact. This document is being produced because of a Memorandum of Understanding between British Cycling and the City Council. Unfortunately this means that it is big on events that promote British Cycling's main sponsor and not so good on the things that really matter like removing the many barriers to cycling in this city.

We may well see more of this because the council doesn't want to upset motorists by giving too much road space over to bicycles, and the Lib Dem opposition are falling over themselves to curry favor with drivers who clog up and pollute the City Centre. So much for the LibDems being environmentally friendly.

And it is in the interest of British Cycling for us all to ride round Manchester advertising Sky.

Manchester FoE say that you should send your comments to Dave Whyte via d.whyte(at) by the end of January.


  1. This is typical of the confusion between sports cycling and cycling as transport in the UK. British Cycling is concerned with the former. A "Memorandum of Understanding" between them and the city can't therefore be expected to have much to do with improving everyday cycling conditions, for improving them isn't directly in British Cycling's interests. It is very unlikely to make Manchester a "World Class Cycling City" (whatever that is). Somehow all those funny places in Holland that have 50% modal share of cycling never seem to go on about being "World Class Cycling Cities". They just get on and provide properly for cycling. I think it would be better if British Cycling just stuck to organising sporting events and left cycle campaigning to local campaigners.

    Vole O'Speed

  2. There's no 'confusion between sports cycling and cycling as transport in the UK'.

    There's not mean to be any coherent cycling strategy in the UK.

    These latest 'consultation drafts' are the latest in a very long line of documents, strategies, plans etc which exist solely to employ the publically paid people who write them and the publically paid or lottery funded people who attend lots of meetings about them.

    It's all just an exercise in keeping people on the public payroll and not really anything to do with promoting cycling as a form of transport.

    That's why we get lots of hopeless cycle lanes and not much else to show for their efforts.