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Wonderful, wonderful, Copenhagen crossings

Road Safety Week, which ran from 23 to 29 November, saw a variety of activities taking place throughout the borough, not least in schools where there were poster competitions, bike maintenance classes and road safety advice sessions.

Dr Bike had a stand on 26 November that saw scores of local residents get their bike checked over. It’s important to make sure your bike is regularly checked and in tip top condition to cope with winter.

There was also a Pop-Up Bike Market held at St John’s The Baptist Church in Leytonstone on 28 November. It proved a great opportunity for people to treat themselves to a new bike or sell an old one.

And a family bike ride saw the Council work in partnership with Waltham Forest Cycling Campaign to take a party of cyclists past the sights around the Olympic Park on 29 November.

At the same time Waltham Forest Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Councillor Clyde Loakes, has been out and about in the borough inspecting the new Copenhagen-style crossings that have been put in place.

Blended (Copenhagen-style) crossings have been installed at various junctions – most notably down Hoe Street in Walthamstow. While they are commonplace in many European cities, the crossings that have been installed as part of the Mini Holland Programme, are among the first introduced in the UK.

Friendly to both cyclists and pedestrians, the crossings appear on minor side roads as a continuation of the footway. They make crossing side roads much easier by insisting that vehicles give way to pedestrians and cyclists and slow down upon entering or exiting the side road.

“It’s important that pedestrians, cyclists and motorists are aware of how these new junctions should be approached,” said Cllr Loakes. “I suspect at first they will be viewed with some trepidation, but hope people get used to them and take advantage of the extra safety they provide.

“We will monitor behaviour at the revised junctions for a trial period via video and we’ve also introduced signage to explain the new layout. Besides serving an important role as a traffic calming measure, the Copenhagen style crossings will also make the borough more attractive.”

Photo: Councillor Clyde Loakes checks out one of the borough’s new Copenhagen-style crossings.

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