London Cycling Campaign helps push cycling centre stage at Evening Standard mayoral hustings

LCC's Tom Bogdanowicz put the key cycling question to the mayoral candidates at the Evening Standard's mayoral hustings at the Emmanuel Centre, Marsham Street, London last night (11 April 2012).

He asked if the candidates were prepared to introduce continental-standard cycling provision in London on the Cycle Superhighways and Transport for London roads.

His question also mentioned the nearly 30,000 signatures on our Love London, Go Dutch petition (video: 25mins 6s).

There was extensive coverage of the debate on Twitter (#mayordebate) and in the Evening Standard, as well as on BBC's 10 O'Clock London News which ran the cycling answers at length.

Chief news reporter Ross Lydall of the Evening Standard tweeted our question as did Caroline Russell of Islington Living Streets.

Summary of cycling responses

  • Jenny Jones said she has signed our petition, and will extend Go Dutch principles to both TfL and borough roads.
  • Boris Johnson said he wants safety, but it can't be done without investment. He said Ken Livingstone would cut the transport budget.
  • Livingstone said Johnson scrapped priority for pedestrian cyclists safety in favour of traffic flow  quoteing mayoral adviser  Kulveer Ranger on Bow roundabout as saying "the Mayor’s priority is traffic flow". He said he'll put Jones on the TfL board to deal with cycling.
  • Jones said if she does get the job she wants "millions and millions" for cycling.
  • Johnson said he is a militant cyclist but cyclists must obey the rules or risk 2losing the natural sympathy that cycluists deserve"
  • Brian Paddick reminded Boris of video showing him riding through red lights (Johnson said it was 'before I was Mayor').
  • Paddick also said LCC came up with reasonable solutions for junctions such as Blackfriars and Kings Cross, but TfL said it would slow traffic flow. He said, "The mayor’s current priority of speeding traffic flows is killing people" and that 'we have to make the roads safer for pedestrians and cyclists.'

Representatives of the Dutch National Embassy attended the debate and complimented LCC on the work we're doing promoting Dutch cycling culture in London.

Leaflets promoting the Big Ride were distributed to enthusiastic Londoners outside the event, and several hundred petition signatures were gathered.