In these dark winter days with challenging weather and road conditions it’s wise to pay attention to a few safety measures before you hit the road. In a video made by Avon and Somerset Police, TACC’s Bikeability Instructor Nick Warner gives winter cycling tips about clothing, lights, the technical condition of your bike and your position on the road. A must-watch with a good checklist.
We have written to all the declared Parliamentary candidates for Taunton Deane with a set of questions concerning various aspects of cycling in and around Taunton. In short, these questions touch a Dutch-style cycling network for Taunton, up to date design guidance for cycling infrastructure, creating high quality safe cycleways, spending to improve bus services, walking and cycling, and working with TACC.
We have made a summary of proposed policies from the candidates.
As part of our campaign to pass safely, we have been getting the ‘safe pass’ message out with our vests and back pack covers during the summer months. Users of these hi-viz vests and covers have answered a short survey about their experience.
- All but one of the 43 respondents found the vests/covers to be significantly or slightly positive in terms of influencing driver behaviour (60% significantly positively);
- All users felt safer, of whom: 21% a lot, 60% moderately and 19% a little;
- A very large majority of 90% would recommend the vests/covers to other cyclists.
Road Safety Fund for a successful campaign
TACC successfully applied for a grant from the Road Safety Fund for a campaign to increase awareness of safe passing and improve local cyclists’ confidence on roads. Mike Ginger explains how TACC used the money.
We know that most drivers are considerate of other road users, and that cycling is much safer than many people think. However sometimes a driver will pass us much closer than is ideal or safe.
Avon and Somerset Police would like to know about these incidents so they can educate and plan enforcement activity.
You can report any close passes on a special web page of Avon and Somerset Police.
Read more about Near Misses and how to avoid them.
TACC has taken an important step towards joining up the fragmented network of cycle routes in and around Taunton – Turning the Cycle Network Blue!
In 2017 the Department for Transport published guidance for local authorities to produce local plans for improved cycling and walking infrastructure. To complete this work in Taunton the most important routes needed to be audited and reported on in detail.
TACC volunteers spent lots of their time in the summer months completing 40 of these audits, identifying some excellent routes and infrastructure along with significant gaps where work is urgently needed to make cycling direct, safe and comfortable for everyone.
This work has recently been presented to an officer of Somerset County Council to support their work in improving transport in and around Taunton, and will be submitted to the Department for Transport in late November 2019. There are high hopes that the plan will attract national and local funding.
More than thirty cyclists of all ages met at the bandstand in Vivary Park to celebrate the anniversary of the Foxglove Trail on Saturday 5 October 2019.
The group made its way around the 11 miles of the trail circling Taunton town centre on a mixture of shared paths and dedicated cycle trails, and found time to get to know each other.
Thanks to the ride leaders who helped a varied and large group stay safe and cause as little disruption to other trail users as possible.
There are many people out there who would like to cycle but don’t feel confident to use the road and in their own skills. To help with this, free one to one cycling confidence sessions are available until 27 July 2019. The sessions typical take an hour and are provided by a qualified cycle instructor. They are tailored to the needs of the person taking part.
In Bristol, thousands of people have done these sessions and many now cycle to work, to shops or for other purposes. One person taking part said “I am now fully committed to cycling to work and I have enjoyed every minute so far. Thank you all!”.
Local instructor Nick Warner said “Taunton is a compact town and for many the town centre and work are only a couple of miles away, a perfect cycling distance. The cycling sessions build confidence and road awareness to make local journeys by bike”.
If you would like to take advantage of this, fill out our contact form and we will be able to arrange a time to suit. We advise you to book by 10 July 2019.
The project is being funded by ‘Big Bike Revival’, which is all about overcoming those little barriers and to help people feel more confident about cycling. Information at www.cyclinguk.org/bigbikerevival. This local project is being organised by Taunton Area Cycling Campaign.
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