Cycling suffers as Greenwich Council misses another deadline

Greenwich Conservatives have once again raised concerns over the Labour Council’s competence and its understanding of democracy after an important plan for improving cycling in the Borough was submitted late and without any democratic oversight.


Greenwich’s ‘Local Implementation Plan Delivery Plan for Transport’ (sic) (2014/15 to 2016/17) was supposed to have been submitted to Transport for London (TfL) on Friday 4th October, but was in fact only published on 7th October.  This left no time for any Councillor other than the Cabinet Member concerned (Cllr Hyland) to object to any proposals or make alternative suggestions.


The ‘Local Implementation Plan Delivery Plan for Transport’ describes how the Council will spend the funds allocated to it by TfL and covers a range of areas in addition to cycling including 20mph zones, a bus priority programme, parking controls and measures to encourage cycling in the borough.


The report also appears to suggest that Greenwich Council has reversed its opposition to dealing with Boris Johnson following its public embarrassment on the issue.  Part of the report reads:


“The Royal Borough welcomes the additional resources that TfL has made available to support cycling across London. The Royal Borough intends to utilise the funding available to compliment schemes and initiatives funded through the LIP allocation so as to further support cycling.”  (Appendix A, Page 24)


This seems a substantial turnaround from the motion forced through Council by the Labour Party in July which was critical of the Mayor of London’s Vision for Cycling and ignored any mention of bidding for funds from TfL.  Indeed the Labour Mayor tried to stop Conservative Group Leader Cllr Spencer Drury from even mentioning the name of the Cycling Commissioner for London (Andrew Gilligan). 


Leader of Greenwich Conservatives Cllr Spencer Drury said “Once again the late submission of this document which explains how the Council aims to spend £2.5m of funds from the Mayor of London reflects its incompetence and disdain for the democratic process.  I think that all the pressure applied to the Leader of the Council over cycling funds has had an effect, but it is hard to be clear if this represents a change of policy as obviously in state controlled Greenwich the name of non-person ‘Gilligan’ is not mentioned anywhere.”


“For those people concerned about their own areas outside of Woolwich town centre, it is worth noting that there is not a single mention of Blackheath or New Eltham in either document.  Eltham is only mentioned with regards to the Council forcing through its highly destructive plan for out High Street.”