Highbury & Islington

Today I saw (wasn't there this morning) a notice attached to the traffic island railings on Highbury corner and on the railings surrounding the roundabout, the notice warned bike users that the railings are to be removed on the 29th of March. This is part of TFLs policy to remove all pedestrain railings from (presumably)all the roads that they have control over. I wondered where else these notices had been displayed. I attach my bike to these railings for two reasons 1. It is highly visible and feels secure, i have been doing so for 8 months with no problems I then use the tube. 2. There are no cycle u tubes provided outside Highbury and Islington, a very busy hub station. What's going on is this a covert anti cycle issue? Does any one have any info on TFLs intentions?


No, but am asking...

I don't know exactly why tfl are doing it but I don't think this should be percieved as anti cycling. Railing removal is something cyclists should be supporting as it has massive saftey benefits:

With railings in place cyclists have nomeans of escape if, as a result of impatient/dangerous drivers or their own stupidity, they end up down the left side of an HGV. See, for example, this incident: http://www.thisislondon.co.uk/news/london/warn-of-dangers-partner-of-dead-cyclist-in-plea-to-politicians-7578895.html. With the railings removed a cyclists in that situation can escape onto the pavement should the need arise.

I also find that it leaves you feeling less enclosed and claustrophobic - adding breathing space if you will.

I, for one, certainly welcome tfl's railing removal.

A cycnical thought which just occured to me it that TfL just want to cash them in for their scarp metal value...


ICAG raised this issue with TfL months ago. TfL told us that they have two separate programs, one for removing barriers and another for adding cycle racks and didn't see any need to to bring these together. My feeling is that the best approach right now, if you are directly affected, is to write to one of your GLA representatives who will shortly be seeking reelection.

Incidentally, if you get desperate, you can lock your bike to the railings around the island.


ICAG (Islington Cyclists)

Andy, I have written to GLA member Jeanette Arnold.

  • By Paul S at 10:27pm 15 April 2012

Scrap steel is worth 10p / kg.  That does not make it worthwhile to cut down railings for scrap value.

railings are lethal for cyclists and islington is wonderful at putting up bike parking places. get over it.

Hope they get bike racks sorted soon. I cannot afford lose my bike when parking it near the highbusr islington station on a daily basis

LCC supports the removal of railings, as part of a long-term goal towards making streets less motor-dominated, and friendlier to cyclists and pedestrians. 

Sadly, the existence of railings often sends a signal to drivers that in the street in question it's acceptable to drive fast and without due regard for vulnerable people.

As pointed out above, they also can cage in cyclists meaning there's no escape route in the event of a collision.

Of course, removing railings has the potential to create other problems, such as the lack of cycle parking, and even a marginal increase in risk for pedestrians.

The answer is to have a proper strategy for removing railings that includes substituting cycle parking, as well as reducing volumes and speeds of motor traffic to genuinely make places more people-friendly.

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