Wednesday, May 06, 2009

The life of Pete Taylor

1 comment:
Sad news has reached me of the death of Easton green activist and great bloke Pete Taylor. I got to know Pete through Green Party campaigning many years back and had contact with him again recently through campaigning on protecting the Bristol to Bath Railway Path environment.

There are some fantastic tributes to Pete here:

E-petition for 20mph default speed on Bristol's residential roads is now live - please sign!!

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From the 20's Plenty For Bristol Campaign:

The E-Petition to Bristol City Council "Reduce the speed limit to 20mph
where people live and work" is now live at the link below. Please
add your names and publicise it widely !

The petitioner asks Bristol City Council to adopt 20mph as the default
speed limit for residential and urban roads.


Most of us want to live in a quiet, pleasant street. A safe street in
which children can play out alone; a friendly street in which you can
meet your neighbours.

No one wants to live in a hostile street that you cannot walk across
thanks to a fast-moving traffic; a noisy street that is an occasional
race track.

We call for Bristol to bring traffic speeds down to 20 miles per hour
across the city, as part of a wider vision for creating the kind of
streets in which we really want to live.


Communities grow where the streets belong to people, not just to
vehicles. City streets can and should be lively, vibrant places which
everyone can enjoy. Streets should be places in which you can hear
yourself speak above the constant noise from vehicles; in which you can
safely walk or cycle with your children.

Our streets should not be grim thoroughfares serving only fast-moving
vehicles. Our streets should include everyone and allow a range of uses.
Our streets should be a truly shared space in which shoppers and
residents, pedestrians and cyclists, young and old, do not take a second
place to people in cars.

Reducing vehicle speeds is the single most important factor in creating
living streets. There is strong and growing evidence to support a
maximum speed limit of 20 mph in our towns and cities. The government
supports the introduction of 20 mph, and the Conservatives now support
20 mph 'in all urban areas'.

We believe that the benefits of 20 mph should be felt throughout
Bristol, in the streets where we live, shop and stroll.


At 20 mph, drivers make eye contact with and engage with the people in
the street they are passing through. This contact really matters: people
in the street know they've been seen. It also makes drivers less
inclined to bully their way along 'their' road, and more inclined to
share the space.

At speeds over 30 mph, drivers begin to become disassociated from the
area they are passing through - treating it principally as a traffic
thoroughfare for getting quickly from A to B, rather than a space for
people to enjoy.


The 2003-04 British Crime Survey asked the public what they perceive to
be the worst 'anti-social behaviour' problems where they live. By far
the biggest problems related to the effects of motor traffic - 43%
reported fast traffic as a 'fairly big' or 'very big' problem, and 31%
felt the same about cars parked inconveniently or illegally.


Perhaps the most surprising fact about reducing speeds from 30 mph to 20
mph is that vehicles get across cities quicker the slower they go.
According to transport planners, in a city where the limits are 20 mph
not 30 mph, there is less need for traffic signals and the queuing that
traffic lights cause. Slow-moving cars require fewer controls and allow
a more efficient city. There's little sense in speeding from one queue
to the next as we do at the moment. Slower speeds make it easy for motor
vehicles to merge with ease, for cycles to co-exist with motor vehicles,
and for pedestrians to cross roads.


. Hit by a car at 40 mph, a pedestrian has an 85 per cent chance of
being killed while at 20 mph the risk falls to 5 per cent.
(Parliamentary Advisory Council for Transport Safety)

. When traffic is slowed down to 20 mph, there is a 70 per cent drop in
accidents to child pedestrians. (Transport Research Laboratory)

. Children from disadvantaged families are five times more likely to be
killed on the roads than the better off. (Department for Transport)

. Children's deaths and injuries could be reduced by 67 per cent if 20
mph were the speed limit on residential roads. (Health Development

. The proportion of children walking to primary school in Britain has
fallen from 61 per cent in 1993 to 53 per cent in 2003, with an increase
from 30 per cent to 39 per cent in the numbers driven to school over the
same period. (National Travel Survey)

FIND OUT MORE at the websites for 20's Plenty for Bristol and 20's
Plenty for Us: and

Steve Kinsella
20's Plenty for Bristol
tel 01934 838624 mobile 07810 285175

Views sought on the use and protection of Green Belt land around Bristol & Bath

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Passing this on:

Views sought on the use and protection of Green Belt land around Bristol & Bath

The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) is seeking views on use of Green Belt land in England. This is your chance to help shape the future of the countryside where you live, work or visit.

Green Belt is rural land around cities that is protected from excessive housing and other development, thus preventing urban sprawl. Around 13% of land in England is estimated to be in one of the fourteen Green Belt areas. The land is protected by planning and development policies.

Some professional groups and developers say that Green Belts are no longer needed, but a MORI poll for CPRE in 2005 found that 84% of people in England believe that Green Belt land should remain open and undeveloped, and that building on it should not be allowed.

CPRE’s Green Belt survey is launched in April 2009. Through this survey we aim to find out how people in Bristol & Bath, London and Merseyside would like to see the Green Belt used in the future, such as for farming, woodland, or recreation. We would particularly welcome the views of (a) people from inner-city areas and (b) landowners or managers based in Green Belt areas.

The information will be analysed and reported back in local media in the autumn. CPRE will use the information nationally to influence a current Government study on the use of land across England, and locally in our work with local authorities on the future planning of how we use the Green Belt.

Local contacts (particularly if you can help to distribute survey information more widely):

• Bristol: Alison Belshaw, Sustain:, tel: 01225 787919

• London: Suzanne Natelson, Sustain: tel: 020 7837 1228

• Merseyside: Allan Nickson, Myerscough College:; tel: 01995 642222

Please circulate the links to as many contacts as possible. If the information is going in to a newsletter or being sent to a large email group please let me know approximately how many people it has been circulated to. If you would like a copy of the survey that could be printed off for completion please contact me.

Many thanks,
Alison Belshaw
Eat Somerset Project Officer