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Students Protest For More Cycle Racks

The comments below are unmoderated submissions by Live! readers. The Editor accepts no liability for their content, nor for any offence caused by them. Any complaints should be directed to the Editor.
Nov 06 2003 15:03

The tranquility of Callender Gate was disturbed at 12:30 today, when a protest took place about the lack of cycle racks in College.

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1. tom t   
Nov 06 2003 15:46


who's that pirate in the foreground? splice the mainbrace!

Good effort chaps!


Nov 06 2003 15:48

I'd call Joe more of a tramp than a pirate.

Nov 06 2003 17:07

I think this is a really worthy campaign and I hope it is taken seriously by the powers that be.

A couple of questions though, is there not already ICU policy on cycle racks? Are the protesters asking ICU to get on with enforcing existing policy or are they after something else?

4. Sam   
Nov 06 2003 19:37

There was a big push in 2000-2001 for cycle racks, due to a spate in thefts. Then President, H Common mentions it in a Council Report

It is also Union Policy (or at least was in 2000-2001) to encourage cycling and construction of racks

Nov 06 2003 22:35

hmmm, sam, i think that policy might have lapsed? like much of it did, or got badly redrafted... etc... etc... etc....

But now, bike racks, i.e. college putting back what it has taken away especially in the last year or so would be a good idea. but hey, maybe not. I suppose it looks unsightly or something.

one can only hope this campaign carrys on, and gets somewhere...

6. tom t   
Nov 07 2003 10:54

There may well be ICU policy on bike racks, but I'm not sure it affects students as students. I think it must be unconstitutional as it only affects cyclists as students.

Anyhow, we, the campaign, are (in this little segment) putting pressure not on the Union, but on The wonderful dept of estates who can be contacted to report a defect, if you'd like to report one pertaining to bike racks, that would be fine. If you'd like to help out on the campaign or know more facts, the answers can be found here .

Other facets of the camapign include providing free cycle training lessons to students and staff working on the SK campus (worth ?60!!), and if you want to get a FREE map of all the useful cycle routes near IC just go to the Union reception where there's a good stock of them.

Lots of love, Welfare and Campaigns Officer ;-)

Nov 07 2003 11:49

Not all students will be affected by visa charges, but council recently passed a motion mandating the president to "...mandate the Union President to seek support from the college for this campaign".

Surely getting the Union involved can only help to strengthen this campaign?

Nov 07 2003 11:51

Please excuse confused English!

Nov 07 2003 11:59

The Union *does* have current (non-lapsed) policy on this. In fact, John, it was the example Council motion that I gave out to everyone at Officer Training in the summer...

ICU Bicycle thefts policy

Nov 07 2003 13:27

Heck! that's Joe, I was half expecting to see Scooby Doo in the corner of the pictures! Zoikes!

Nov 07 2003 19:08

Theres plenty of space on campus for bike racks. Between huxley and physics theres a huge area with only a few racks on there, it could easily be made into an oxbridge style bike storage area.

Im sure also that theres a lot of bikes in the racks that have just been locked up and left there by people that have left the college and havent bothered to take theyre bike with them.

12. Seb   
Nov 09 2003 15:17

That area is not free.

The first bit is the loading bay for Physics and needs to be kept clear. Then there is the gas stores.

It is true that inbetween there is an area of grass in front of the Huxley undercroft. This was going to have a cooling plant built on it to cool some labs in Huxley/Blacket basement. However at the last minute someone in Shefield intervened (so the cooling plants are now going to be built on the roof to enormous cost) because apparently, this lusious area of green is apparently sacred and must not be touched.

So no extra bike racks I fear.


13. Sam   
Nov 09 2003 23:32


I fear that the gap in question is the gap between Computing and the end of Physics on the Queens' Gate side to which Chubna is referring...

And it's definitely empty, as it's one of the disabled access routes into Physics...

14. Seb   
Nov 10 2003 10:18

Ah. Now I see.

It's not very secure though is it? and I think the Physics department is thinking about using it for something when they have some money (Lack of space in the physics)

Nov 10 2003 13:24

I hear a whisper that when the new admin building is finished, there will bike facilities there for 400 or so bikes. Doesn't help now I guess.

16. Seb   
Nov 10 2003 15:22

Hmmm. I'll belive it when I see it.

Nov 10 2003 20:23

I suppose the silver lining on the cloud that is the College's policy towards its vast number of cyclist members is that students are still prepared to make a noise about it. I made a noise at the highest levels - including giving the Rector a copy of the policy I put to Council in 2000.

Can I suggest this, or something like it, is done again? Persistence is the key to getting College to provide proper cycle security, otherwise it falls through the cracks of more "important" policy issues. It really is an issue that affects lots of students all the time.

18. tom t   
Nov 11 2003 12:00

To their credit, the faculty building (ivory tower?) will have cycle parking for 600 cycles, with swipe card access, so all those cyclists in MachEng, CivEng and RSM building will have fantastic facilities. Sadly the north western end of campus still lacks cycle parking in a chronic manner. This is compounded by increasingly strict bike removal policy by security and departments taking their fire safety interpretation of the law rather seriously.

Add to that an increasing cycling community and a number of heads of depts who, of course, drive in every day to a parking space outside their office and it all gets a little too much for some.

We look forward to bringing policy and more to the upper echelons of the business.

Our other point is that, irrelevant to world domination as it is, they had no excuse for not applying for free money from the GLA. It hardly cost them anything to do that, and yet they needed a good booting up the proverbial to get it done. More "important" policy often commands more "important" sums fo money... (rebranding huchh hum)

19. Nia   
Nov 11 2003 12:46

"Sadly the north western end of campus still lacks cycle parking in a chronic manner. "

Is it *really* that far a walk from the Faculty building to Huxley et al? Particularly put in context of a 20/30min cycle ride?

I think 400 spaces in the faculty building is fantastic news!

20. tom t   
Nov 11 2003 14:41

that's the point. Cyclists like to go from door to door quickly. Otherwise we'd all take the tube and walk miles both ends.

It's like the modern man driving to the supermarket, but not parking in the car park but across and down the road, just because the council installed a new car park there with CCTV. I thought the point of driving to the supermarket was to avoid carrying heavy bags????

Anyway, the fact is, there is a serious shortage of secure, decent bike parking, and it is many times more space efficient than any other form of personal transport.

21. tom t   
Nov 11 2003 14:42

"I think 400 spaces in the faculty building is fantastic news!"

So do I:

'To their credit, the faculty building (ivory tower?) will have cycle parking for 600 cycles, with swipe card access, so all those cyclists in MachEng, CivEng and RSM building will have fantastic facilities.'

Nov 11 2003 16:06

Space for 600 Cycles? - Given that the entire building is going to be a student free zone, what makes you think that the swipecard access to cycle storage extends to students - to my mind that 600 covers about 10% of the staff, why would they want to let students in?

23. Dale   
Jul 06 2004 14:34

I have just heard that the Rector has ordered that the cycle racks outside the SAFB are removed in order to improve the appearance of college.

I recognise that there is a new "bike park" under the faculty building. However, by all accounts there are many problems with this facility:

  • the entrance is up steps (not practical if you have a heavy bike)
  • the racks are upright and difficult to use. As a result people are not using them properly, for example some people are putting their bikes on their side with the consequence of taking up too much space
  • you cannot use D-locks with the racks
  • there is insufficient space for all of the bikes that come to campus

Further, the alleged improvements with security have not been realised. There are already bikes in there with wheels missing. Other people feel that personal security is also an issue as the facility is quite secluded and has no CCTV inside.

All of this is being done without consultation of students (or staff). Also note that this is being done when undergrads are not here so that the impact on the rack removal APPEARS to be minimal. I anticipate that this will be a much bigger problem when the undergrads return in the autumn. However, it may be too late by then because once the cycle racks are removed it will be much tougher for us to get college to replace them.

Apart from disagreeing with the entire thinking behind this ridiculous proposal (as I don't think the current cycle racks make college look messy in the slightest) I also think that an institution which claims to be 'opinion-forming', 'innovative', etc (to quote the Rector) should be positively encouraging cycling in a city as congested as London and not removing the resources which help facilitate it. Further, for some students who live outside of South Ken many rely on their bikes to get to college as they simply cannot afford to pay the high tube fares.

For those people interested there is petition protesting about the removal of the cycle racks next to the SAFB cycle racks.

24. Rectum   
Jul 06 2004 18:38

Can't have bicycles around the place, people might think the college is full of students.

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