AGM Bridge charity group motion

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AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby Steady rider » 23 Apr 2016, 9:21pm

AGM motion number 15
15) Bridge charity group
The CTC to establish a CTC bridge charity group (initially expected to be based on volunteers), with the aims of assessing the need, advising on design, and assist in raising funds to provide extra bridges or crossing facilities for rivers, roads or rail in regards to cycling.
Proposer’s note: CTC could assist in highlighting where an additional crossing may be worthwhile, provide design advice and help to raise funds. This could result in the CTC being more directly involved in providing more cycle routes and working with Sustrans or others to deliver them.
Proposer Colin Clarke, seconder Douglas Hope

Council response: Council opposes this motion. CTC is involved in the infrastructure debate at the highest levels. It would be a significant diversion from CTC’s agreed strategy to convene a group of volunteers to seek to deliver bridges in a market which is seeing reductions to funding, as public bodies respond to budget cuts, and is already served by organisations such as Sustrans


Sometimes major roads and motorways are being provided with poor crossing facilities for cycling. In North Yorkshire minor roads were sometimes closed as new motorways came along. On major A roads it seems few bridges are provided for cyclists or pedestrians to cross.

A CTC bridge group would probably consist mainly of engineer who could outline the best case for providing additional crossing facilities and in gaining maximum support. Motion 13, climate change policy, seeks additional funding for cycling infrastructure. Extra bridges as part of the improved infrastructure will be helpful. A bridge group should be able to identify locations and the most suitable type of structure required. Some credit to the CTC for promoting and acting in support of these bridges could also be useful as a legacy and acknowledgment to their work.

CTC net income for 2015 was £764,159 with assets of £4,587,624, so it appears that some contribution could be made to supporting extra bridges on occasions. If extra funding for cycling is provided by the government and the bridge group had some details ready for supporting suitable schemes, it could be helpful in justifying the extra funding.

CTC uses excuses and says ‘a market which is seeing reductions to funding, as public bodies respond to budget cuts’. Transport spending in 2005 was £16 billion, 2010 £23 billion, 2015 £19 billion, 2016 £27 billion. So the CTC reply is not accurate for total transport spending.
CTC says that the bridge motion ‘is already served by organisations such as Sustrans’. The CTC can become more involved and cater for many situations not related to the major cycle routes provided by Sustrans. Potentially there is more to be gained and little to be lost by supporting the motion.
http://www.cyclinguk.org/sites/default/ ... 201415.pdf

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meic
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby meic » 23 Apr 2016, 9:43pm

I dont much like their wording but I can see the point if they had just said "we would rather put our efforts into other things".
I agree that it is more Sustran's sort of thing than CTC's*.

Back in the days pre-Charity, it would have been a simple case of the members voting as to whether it was what CTC should be putting its efforts into or not.
Now we are a Charity, I dont think that it is in the members' power to decide such things anymore, no matter how they vote.

*I'll get round to calling it CUK eventually.
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gaz
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby gaz » 24 Apr 2016, 12:44am

Council opposes this motion. CTC is involved in the infrastructure debate at the highest levels. It would be a significant diversion from CTC’s agreed strategy to convene a group of volunteers to seek to deliver bridges in a market which is seeing reductions to funding, as public bodies respond to budget cuts, and is already served by organisations such as Sustrans

Council's response reflects a full understanding of how major infrastructure projects are developped and funded. It's a blunt response but it is far from an excuse.
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby Steady rider » 24 Apr 2016, 2:55pm

http://www.cyclinguk.org/press-release/ ... gful-fundi

It may not be clear precisely what strategy they are referring?
significant diversion from CTC’s agreed strategy


Can anyone provide a link?
The government’s Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy “won’t be worth the paper it’s written on” unless backed by sustained funding, said CTC, the national cycling charity, and British Cycling in their initial response to its draft proposals.


CTC is involved in the infrastructure debate at the highest levels.


So does this result in a strategy but lacking in suitable funding to accomplish anything substantial?

Are they doing anything more than debate, could they be more actively involved, with a bridge group looking at possible routes or improvements required?

Sustrans appear to be a large organisation with spending of £40 million+ per year, but it is not clear how accountable they are, do their members vote on issues, are their paths subject to standrads?
The motion says
This could result in the CTC being more directly involved in providing more cycle routes and working with Sustrans or others to deliver them


Rather than just leaving it to Sustrans who seem less accountable than most organisation, the CTC could take on a more active role.

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gaz
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby gaz » 24 Apr 2016, 3:54pm

Sustrans have no members. You can give them your money to become a supporter, your time to become a Volunteer, or you can seek appointment to the board as and when vacancies become available. Sustrans owns very little of the National Cycle Network, less than 4% IIRC.

Sustrans are accountable to their funders. Their primary sources of income are grants from local and central government and lottery funding. Sustrans income for 2014/15 was £43,740,000, of which £23,734,000 was spent on creating new infrastructure and maintenance. The rest would have been for projects directly promoting cycling, walking and other sustainable transport in communities.

The vast majority of their funding will be to deliver specific projects, be that new infrastructure or cycling promotion. Donations from supporters are a small proportion of Sustrans total funding but can be used much more flexibly. A read of Sustrans annual review will give you a broad idea of how it all works. Sustrans' most recent UK wide large infrastructure project was Connect2, backed by £50m lottery funding and involving the completion of a variety of "missing links", often by way of tunnels or bridges.

Sustrans is currently undergoing substantial internal change (restructuring and redundancies) as a result of reductions in recent and expected future income, particularly for infrastructure.
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby Steady rider » 24 Apr 2016, 6:28pm

Thanks Gaz for the details.

For Sustrans they have spending of £43.74 million for 2014/15 and it may be reduced. From the £19 billion transport budget for 2015, that is about 0.25%, or a quarter of 1%. Bearing in mind Sustrans aims is to provide for both pedestrians and cycling, but have a past history of providing in parts a low standard of infrastructure.

The CTC is looking for £10 per person per year on cycling, (motion 13, seeks 3%, about £13 per person per year), about £630 to £840 million (rough figures).

It may have some benefits for the CTC to have a bridge group who would be aware of typical costs and looking for high standard facilities for cycling, a higher standard than Sustrans would design to. If the government provided the higher levels of support to cycling they would want to know that any advisers had sufficient practical experience. A CTC bridge group would add to their credentials for advising on infrastructure.

The link to Sustrans shows most of the connections are in urban areas, with 5 from 79 projects in rural locations,

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/s ... n-2013.pdf
shows that most of the road system is rural, 62.9%. So the Connect2 work Sustrans is doing mainly provides for urban areas. A CTC bridge group could assist in rural projects in particular, these are harder in general to justify funding for due mainly to infrequent use.

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gaz
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby gaz » 24 Apr 2016, 9:05pm

When it comes to funding there's no may be reduced about it, the cuts are substantial and the current view in Sustrans is that they are here to stay.

Sustrans don't so much provide the infrastructure as act as a middle-man in providing an element of the funding for it. The nature of grant funding is such that if designs and permissions aren't ready before the funding is granted, there isn't time to get them in place before the deadline for spending the funding has passed. Sustrans may commision designs of bridges but they won't be done in house.

More generally Sustrans make infrastructure design recommendations but they are essentially acting in an advisory capacity to fulfil someone else's design brief. Where Sustrans advise a 4m wide shared path the highway authority may decide 2.5m will be satisfactory, so long as they throw in a few "Cyclists Dismount" signs for everyone's safety. It is the highway authority that implements the schemes, not Sustrans.

Incidentally Sustrans does not deal with the maintenance of it's own estate (that less than 4% of the NCN), checking structures for safety and arranging restoration is specialist work that it passes on to Railway Paths Limited, often described as its sister charity.

IMO Council has made the right call on this one. CTC should not be looking to form a bridge charity group.
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Re: AGM Bridge charity group motion

Postby Steady rider » 25 Apr 2016, 9:26am

Trying to list the pros and cons of a CTC bridge group may be helpful

Possible advantages
1 Brings together CTC members who can contribute to advice on design, where required and potential costs
2 Direct route for any CTC group/member to forward details about a crossing point they would like to see improvements or provisions made
3 A list of projects could be used to add merit to asking for funding cycling
4 When provided, the CTC could point to specific facilities where they helped in providing
5 If suitable, CTC could organise rides in a specific area or otherwise to raise funds for a specific facility, helping local people become aware of the need, helping the CTC by publicity, helping to promote cycling.
6 CTC gains experience from all of the above, and possible supporters or contacts
7 Costs can be controlled, overall and tailored to each proposal.


Possible disadvantages
1 Time and effort to set up the group
2 May look like infringing on Sustrans area of experience (CTC could focus on rural aspects)
3 Individual schemes may generate work to organise and not proceed (list of why some succeed and others failed, possible advantage to know)
4 A cost factor would probably occur over time

It looks like Sustrans will be doing less and the CTC are asking for funds that are doubtful to achieve. If it proved to be worthwhile may depend on the volunteers and their experience.

A review after 1, 2 or 3 years could be reported at the AGM. If needed CTC Council could put a motion to amend or discontinue the group.