Hampstead residents support measures to aid cycling
Strong local support for measures to aid cycling was evident in answers to a recent survey of residents' opinions on possible steps that Camden could take in response to the coronavirus emergency.
Of 400 responses from the NW3 area, 80% supported more cycle stands, 78% backed support for repair shops and 77% favoured 'quiet' cycle routes. You can see the full results of the survey by clicking HERE.
We are now in discussions on potential locations and funding for additional cycle stands.
During summer 2020, the Hampstead Neighbourhood Forum has conducted several consultations on transport options to assist Camden's response to the Covid-19 epidemic.
Most recently, we asked whether there was support for closing the sliproad at South End Green to create a piazza-like space that would help pedestrians, cafés and businesses. Closing the sliproad as a temporary measure was supported by 78% of the 256 respondents, and opposed by 20%. There was caution, however, about a permanent closure, with 52% in favour, 24% against, and 24% opting 'see how it works.'
Subsequently, TfL has agreed to relocate the 168 bus stand to Fleet Road, by the rear entrance of the Royal Free Hospital, with no change to the route of the 168. Local bodies and businesses now plan to establish a 'streatery' on the sliproad along the lines of a project in Belsize Village.
The proposal to close the sliproad temporarily as an emergency response came from Hampstead Town ward's councillors. But the Hampstead Neighbourhood Plan supports changes at South End Green to make better use of public space. Read our Vision for South End Green in the Plan.
An earlier survey, seeking ideas on improving walking and cycling, produced 226 responses. Read about the ideas here.
There is a need for more cycling and walking options because public transport capacity has been cut by social distancing. According to the Department of Transport, a modest increase in cycling would substantially reduce journeys by car, train and bus. The government has announced funding for measures to promote walking and cycling. Camden Council is expediting such measures. You can read about Camden's response here.
The Hampstead Neighbourhood Forum is a voluntary group set up by local residents. Under the terms of the Localism Act 2011, communities were given the ability to shape future development in their areas through Neighbourhood Plans. The Forum developed the Hampstead Neighbourhood Plan following intensive discussions over five years with local residents, community groups and businesses.
The Neighbourhood Plan, which was passed by referendum with a 91.5% majority and adopted by Camden in 2018, set goals for Hampstead’s future, and policies to achieve them. You can read the Hampstead Neighbourhood Plan here, view the Plan area here and follow the process of consultation and drafting that led to the Plan's creation here.
The Forum held its seventh annual general meeting on 16 March 2020. You can read the minutes of the meeting here and view the slides that were shown here. The new committee can be found here. Janine Griffis's subsequent report to members can be read here. Griffis stepped down in June 2020 after six years of outstanding service to the community as the Forum's founding chair. Stephen Taylor was elected chair.
The purpose of the Neighbourhood Plan, and of the Forum, is not to oppose development. Rather, the Plan aims to keep Hampstead lively and contemporary, while safeguarding the fine heritage of our streets and buildings. Hampstead should be enduringly green, with the Heath, open spaces, trees and landscapes well protected. It should be safe and walkable, with good public transport. It should foster local enterprise, supporting the needs who live and work in the area as well as visitors. And it should be a strong community with good amenities.
PLANNING WATCH: The Hampstead Neighbourhood Forum comments selectively on planning applications that, in our view, support or are at odds with the Neighbourhood Plan's policies. Click here to see the Forum's recent comments and to see how the Plan's policies are being taken into account in planning decisions.