Hackney council takes on London Fields drivers

Hackney council neighbourhoods cllr Feryal Demirci at London Fields cyclists breakfast © david.altheer@gmail.com 180614

* UPDATE: A public meeting on the proposed scheme and trial will be held at the Queensbridge community centre, 30 Holly Street Dalston E8 3XW, on Thursday 12 November 2015 at 7pm. See also later story 


Demirci, top, and above, where the traffic-filtering planters would be placed
Demirci, top, and above, version 2 of the council traffic-filtering scheme


HACKNEY COUNCIL has unveiled a cyclist-pedestrian  traffic scheme it admits will be one of the most ambitious in London.

A similar trial in adjacent Walthamstow inspired vigorous protests by motorists.

Already, the influential London Fields User Group (Lfug) is revving up for a protest and the council has already amended its plans, above.

The Hackney scheme will close junctions near London Fields park to rat-running to allow bikers and walkers to travel freely as they filter out motor-vehicle through-traffic.

What the council calls “attractive planters filled with winter flowers and shrubs, and where possible trees” will prevent motor-traffic access.

In the area bounded by Richmond Road in the north, Scriven Road in the south, Lansdowne Drive in the east and Haggerston Road in the west, the changes will “mean better places to live for the majority of residents”.

Vehicular access to all streets will be maintained for residents in the area — about a kilometre square.

The proposal aims to make the district quieter and less polluted, as well as safer and easier for walking, cycling and playing.

Sustainability councillor Feryal Demirci, top, at a London Fields cycle campaign, said in a council press release headlined “London Fields road trial to see 16 junctions closed to through-traffic”: “We strongly believe this

Greenwood2: Rd Lon Fields Hackney London E8 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Lethal legacy: a narrow London Fields cycle lane devised by Hackney council

exciting project will bring significant improvements for almost everyone living in the area. In Hackney, pedestrians and cyclists come first.”

She adds that “residents will still be able to access their roads by motor vehicle”.

A less-than catchily entitled petition letter, Stop The Proposed Road Closures Hackney London Fields Ward, says that “nobody has been consulted”.

The scheme would push traffic into Richmond, Trederwen and Brougham roads. The council describes the three-month trial, starting in London Fields

GLA cycling commissioner Andrew Gilligan leads CS1 (cycle superhighway1) preview for Hackney People on Bikes 170315 © david.altheer@gmail.com
In the De Beauvoir district of Hackney, not far from London Fields, residents have fallen into disagreement about proposed street closures for a TfL-planned cycle route, to be known as Cycle Superhighway Route 1. (Only bureaucrats could come up with something so uninspiring, not to mention open to mis-citing – it’s often wrongly called “CSI”.) Above, led by Andrew Gilligan, the Mayor’s Cycling Commissioner, cyclists pass the Scolt Head pub in N1 as they sample the proposed route in March 2015

in January 2016, as a “formal consultation process in which residents can give their views”.

The press release, however, quotes two members of cycling organisations and no opponents.

It also talks of what “will” rather than “would” happen. A Freudian slip?

David Altheer 301015

* Press this link to see the map with more locative context.

* Petitions are being drawn up, including: pro and con. 

* Backstory: After the London Fields party; Little fires in the Fields; London Fields summer of love

Child in a baby BMW: conspicuous consumption in London Fields Hackney London E8 290714 © david.altheer@gmail.com
Early start: child in a baby BMW feels the costly car-love in London Fields

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6 thoughts on “Hackney council takes on London Fields drivers

  1. I am open to trying this. Three months should be long enough for everyone to draw their own conclusions.

    Let us give it a fair chance, and then choose.

  2. This is just another form of social cleansing. Move all the dirty air from the rich streets to the poor streets because they are less important the price of their homes are not the issue.

    Diane Abbott should be ashamed to call herself a Labour MP… she is just out to help herself and her own neighbours. Shame on you and your supporters.

    The story does not mention Abbott. I expect you refer to one in the Telegraph that implied she was supporting the scheme because it would raise property values and (still following, everybody?) as a Middleton Road house-owner she would profit.

    When necessary, Loving Dalston never hesitates to criticise the member for Hackney North and Stoke Newington. But never in the way of the Telegraph piece, which was the silliest and most unfair hatchet job I’ve seen in years, a disgrace to journalism. – Editor

  3. This scheme will not reduce pollution; it will concentrate it along the residential roads on to which all the area traffic will be routed.

    My family lives in Richmond Road. So it is acceptable that the lungs of my young children will suffer for an improvement to “the majority” of residents, many of whom already live in streets with little traffic? Not to mention the fact that we must cross this already busy road to get to schools, doctors and parks.


  4. It’s a fantastic scheme to trial. London needs to reduce the number of cars on its streets and the amount of pollution in the air. Schemes such as these, which will contribute towards that, are to be commended.

    Changing the landscape will change people’s behaviour. So nobody knows the real outcome until it is in place.

    The three-month trial will allow people to see the proposal in practice, and so we’ll all be able to comment knowing the impact, rather than all of us making assumptions and best guesses.

  5. This scheme will increase fumes, as cars will sit in jams. I am both a cyclist and a driver and worry about those who cannot cycle: they will be stranded.

    Cycle lanes, not road closure, please.

  6. And the emergency services? Russian roulette to get to a fire call? Wrong door number, wrong side of a closure? Don’t worry, burn to death: free up another Hackney home.

Comments are closed.