Sunday, November 19, 2006

Obesity is a growing problem - safe cycling can help

Every day we read more about the growing problem of obesity in Ireland, especially among children. Cycling is a fun way to avoid this problem - but it must be safe. Many parents are understandably afraid to let their children cycle for fear of injury or death on our narrow congested roads.

Please click here to Register Your Support for Safe Cycle Routes in Fingal and encourage your friends and family to do likewise. Thank you.

Useful businesses and services in Fingal

We list here for free, links to businesses and services that you may find useful within Fingal. In return, the businesses shown here have agreed to link to us from their site.

A big 'Thank you for your support' to each of these businesses.

Remember......if you choose to travel by bike.....you have the right to expect to travel in safety.

Map My Business
Map My Business helps businesses to attract more customers, increase sales and reduce costs. 
Visit www.mapmybusiness.com to:
  • See how customers are using www.GoogleMaps.com to locate businesses selling the products and services they want to buy
  • Learn how to list your business on Google Maps at no cost
  • Understand the benefits of engaging Map My Business to list your business for you 
'Designer Wine is committed to only stocking and supplying superior wines and champagnes. We stand over every bottle with a 100% guarantee of satisfaction or the customer receives a 100% no quibble refund.'

Kiddimatters
'Help your child learn to cycle without stabilisers with a Wallaby Trainer. No more aching back, the jacket contains a gripper to support your child without needing to bend down, and teaches the child to balance the bike themselves thereby speeding up the process and building confidence. Features reflective strips for extra safety'

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Mark Cagney predicts the future...

I predict that we will be walking and cycling a lot more in the future. This increase in exercise will lead to a dramatic decrease in obesity problems. Cleaner air, thanks to less pollution from cars, will also make us healthier By Mark Cagney, Ireland AM

For more predictions see ScienceWeek's Predictions on the Green

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Time to join forces to lobby for improved cycling facilities

We are calling on all cycling groups within Ireland to join forces to lobby for improved facilities for ALL cyclists. We have identified at least FOUR distinct types of cyclists, including:
1. Racing Cycists
2. Commuting Cyclists
3. Leisure/Family/Young Children
4. Mountain Bikers
Please e-mail Fingalsafecycling@gmail.com if your group is interested in 'joining up'.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Time for national cycle route strategy

We have contacted all of the major political parties calling for the development of a national cycle route strategy, and the establishment of SUSTRANS in the Republic.

SUSTRANS is a UK charity organisation that has been developing a national cycle network across the UK for the past ten years. It recently began implementing projects in the Republic. SUSTRANS are implementing the 'North West Trail' on behalf of six councils; Donegal County Council, Strabane District Council, Omagh District Council, Fermanagh District Council, Leitrim County Council and Sligo County Council.
For full details, please see: North West Trail

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

A Fun Way for Your Child to Learn to Cycle Smart...


Safety is no accident. You’ve already given your child the gift of life. Perhaps you even bought your child their first bike. What better gift could you give your child now than to teach them the art of safe cycling, or better still afford them the opportunity to teach themselves – children remember better that way.;)

The Cycle Smart website allows them to do just that. It’s a child-friendly safe cycling initiative sponsored by the UK’s Department for Transport. It comes in two versions, HTML and Flash – if you’ve got Macromedia Flash installed on your computer, try the Flash version – it’s much more fun. You’ll find a link at the top of the Cycle Smart website that’ll take you there.

So why not encourage your child to visit this Cycle Smart website today, by simply clicking on the above image?

And remember…safety is a small investment for a rich future!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

What your councillors are doing to provide safe cycle routes in your area

We have provided this space to your County Councillors to enable them to tell you what they are each doing to provide safe cycle routes in the part of Fingal they each represent.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

Brendan Gleeson voices his support

Brendan Gleeson e-mailed the following message of support to us, together with a lovely mugshot! Thank you Brendan.

"Nothing clears the head quite like getting out on the bike and letting
the breeze blow things back into perspective.

For many, however, the joy of cycling in the fresh air is a thing of
the past. Frankly, cycling on our roads has become too dangerous,
especially for the young. It is unwise and unfair to do nothing about
this.

The situation is not insurmountable. Designated safe cycling routes can reverse the trend. Kids are eager to get out there. Adults the same. Give people a safe environment and thousands will get back on their bikes. The benefits to health and well-being would be enormous. All it requires is vision and the persistence to see it through.

What a legacy Fingal Co. Council can bestow on the county, with the provision of the Coastal Way and a full commitment to the provision of safe cycling throughout Fingal. It would reap the rewards for generations.

I fully support Fingal Safe Cycling Action Group in their campaign and look forward to a healthier Fingal in the future. Not to mention those breezes in the spokes!

Brendan Gleeson"

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Malahide - Good news on Barrack Bridge / Caves Marsh route

We are delighted to learn of Fingal County Council's plan for a 120 metre long boardwalk across Caves Marsh. This has the potential to resolve the current Nightmare at Barrack Bridge.


This plan will soon be open for 'Public Consultation'. Please contact the council, directly and via this BLOG, to voice your support for this positive development, but please ask that the boardwalk and related pathways be built to facilitate both pedestrians and cyclists, in keeping with Transportation Objective TO28 "to prepare and implement on a progressive basis a programme for the development of the Fingal Coastal Way for pedestrians and cyclists".

Thank you.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Everyone's a winner !


The pupils in Ms. Markey's 2nd class in St. Oliver Plunkett's National School, Malahide, recently completed a colouring competition to promote awareness of the need for safe off road cycle routes for children. Kids need the space to learn, safe from motorised traffic.

Ms. Markey found it very difficult to pick a winner, as all of the entries were excellent.

The winning entry was by Jack Quinn, with Ciara Furlong 2nd and Cliona Hamill 3rd.

The entries were so good, that the Fingal Safe Cycling Action Group decided they were all 'winners' and presented the class with a box of 'Heroes' chocolates to celebrate. Well done to each one of you.

Baldoyle Family Fun Cycle - Great Success!


Clowns, balloons, face painting, children’s disco, fire juggler – it was all action at the Family Fun Cycle organised on Sunday last, 1st October by the Baldoyle Family Resource Centre. The Fingal Safe Cycling Action Group were delighted to participate in this fun cycle, and to have the opportunity to report on this, the 3rd year of the ‘Baldoyle on two wheels’ event.

Up to one hundred families took to their bikes and completed the cycle that went from St. Peter and Paul’s Boys National School Baldoyle along the coastal cycle path to St. Anne’s park Raheny and back.


Threatening skies and a shower of rain at the start could not dampen the spirits, as the convey, escorted by the Gardai were led from the school to the safety of the coastal cycle path. They were also accompanied by a cycling parrot who later told Fingal Safe Cycling that he was completely bird-brained! Carmen Paredes, a community worker at the centre wishes to thank all those who helped organise the event, and those who contributed to the fund raising. Carmen was delighted to hear of Fingal County Council’s objective of building a safe, off-road cycle route from Baldoyle to Portmarock. This route will be part of the Fingal Coastal Way for pedestrians and cyclists, which will extend from the county boundary with Dublin City to the county boundary with County Meath. Carmen expects this annual event to continue to grow in popularity especially when the Baldoyle- Portmarnock safe cycle route is completed.

And a very special thank you to Jen, from the Adventure Group - who helped us out when we arrived at the wrong starting point! Thanks Jen!

Saturday, September 30, 2006

The cycle path debate

We are campaigning for safe off-road cycle paths because children need the space to learn, safe from motorised transport.

There are many arguments for and against off road cycle paths.
You can find details, and contribute to the debate on Wikipedia in the Cycle path debate.
How you can help!

There are a number of simple things you can do to help.

1. Register Your Support !

2. Tell your friends and family about the campaign! - Encourage them to support!
Just tell them to type 'Fingal Safe Cycling' into Google, and they will find us.

3. Contact your local councillors - ask them what they are doing to provide safe cycling routes in your area for you and your family. You will get their details here Fingal County Councillors

4. If you would like to get more involved - contact us at fingalsafecycling@gmail.com
Contact us

Send an e-mail to Fingalsafecycling@gmail.com

Mobile: Ken O'Connor 086 8196026

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Fingal - everything you need to know !
Click on Fingal to go to the Wikipedia page on Fingal, where you will find lots of interesting and useful information about Fingal. You will also will find links to specific details on your local Fingal town or village (see below).

What's more, if you spot an error, or disagree with anything on
Wikipedia, you can correct it yourself ! Wikipedia is one of the best examples of a web collaboration project. Have a look at it - it is truly amazing.

Balbriggan, Baldoyle, Bayside, BlanchardstownWikipaedia - The Free Encyclopaedia
Castleknock, Clonsilla
Donabate
Garristown
Howth
Lusk
Malahide, Mulhuddart
Naul
Oldtown
Portmarnock, Portrane
Rush
Rolestown (Rowlestown)
Skerries, Swords, Sutton

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Register your support

Just click on the link below to tell us what you think of our campaign for safe cycle routes.

When you have typed your comment, select the 'Name/URL' button - you may then add your name and where you live e.g. Tony, Donabate, or Joan Murphy, Skerries. Of course comments of support from all over the world are also welcome!

Post your comment of support here !

You may write anything you like - however, we will delete any offensive or inappropriate material. more details...

Your support counts - Thank you.

Spam prevention and comment moderation:

To prevent spam generation computers from posting comments, we have turned on 'Spam prevention'. When you post a comment, you will be asked to type in a number of letters that are shown to you in a 'distorted' manner. Spam generating computers cannot complete this relatively simple task, and are thus prevented from posting Spam comments.

You may post any comment you wish, as per the Wikipedia model (see Wikipedia:Introduction). However, we will delete offensive or inappropriate comments.
We have the facility to turn on 'Comment moderation. This would require us to first view comments before they can be published. This would impose a time delay between you posting your comment, and it being published. We are confident that it will not be necessary to use this facility.

Flagship project and other proposed routes


Our Flagship Project is the 10Km long continuous pedestrian and cycle route aroundthe Broadmeadow Inner Estuary. This will provide a fabulous amenity for the residents of Swords, Donabate and Malahide, and indeed for all of the people of Fingal and beyond. This route is less than five miles from Dublin Airport, and has the potential to become a significant eco-tourist attraction.

There is currently a pedestrian path along some of the southern shore of the estuary (see picture). We would like to see this upgraded to accomodate both cyclists and pedestrians.



Barrack Bridge - at Cave's Marsh is currently part of the Broadmeadow inner estuary pedestrian / cycle way. As you can see from the picture, this is a nightmare for pedestrians and cyclists alike. Up to 8,000 cars a day use this recently upgraded road that links Seabury to Malahide village. See the current route at Barrack Bridge pedestrian / cycle route. Thankfully, just yards away is plenty of space to solve this problem........



The simple solution is to build a pedestrian / cyclist bridge over Cave's Marsh closer to the shore (see Cave's Marsh route) . There is already a beautiful pathway at Cave's Marsh that unfortunately comes to a 'dead end'.

We were pleased to learn recently (Late Sep 06) that the council has decided to build a bridge across Caves Marsh. The design will go to 'public consultation' shortly. Years of campaigning by local groups such as the Seabury Residents Association is finally paying off. Well done to all.

Click on the following for a very Rough sketch of 'Fingal Way'

As time permits, we will map out other proposed routes. If you have ideas for safe cycle routes in your part of Fingal, you can use WWW.wikiwalki.com to map them out. Tell us about them and we will include a link from this page.

Existing Walks and Hikes
We have begun to map out some of the fabulous walks and hikes already in place in Fingal:

Rhodedendrum walk - Deer Park
Coast walk - Malahide to Portmarnock
Howth Cliff Walk-Route 1

You can map your favourite Fingal walk / hike / cycle at www.wikiwalki.com
If you do - let us know about it, and we'll add a link to it.

While we are campaigning for safe off road cycle routes to be built, we are not suggesting that walks such as the Howth Cliff walk, or the Rhodedenrum walk should have cycle ways added. We do however want to be able to cycle to the start of these walks in safety.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Barrack Bridge - at Cave's Marsh is currently part of the inner estuary pedestrian / cycle way. As you can see from the picture, this is a nightmare for pedestrians and cyclists alike. Up to 8,000 cars a day use this recently upgraded road that links Seabury to Malahide village. See the current route at Barrack Bridge pedestrian / cycle route. Thankfully, just yards away is plenty of space to solve this problem........





The simple solution is to build a pedestrian / cyclist bridge over Cave's Marsh closer to the shore (see Cave's Marsh route) . There is already a beautiful pathway at Cave's Marsh that unfortunately comes to a 'dead end'.

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Excellent objectives - now please deliver them.
We congratulate Fingal County Council on the many excellent safe cycling objectives contained in the Fingal development plan particularly: -

  • Transportation Objective TO28
    Development of the Fingal Coastal Way - a combined pedestrian and cycle path extending from the county boundary with Dublin City to the county boundary with County Meath.

We have drawn a Rough sketch of 'Fingal Way'.

We will do everything in our power to assist and encourage Fingal County Council to turn this objective into reality, starting now. We have identified the development of a pedestrian /cycle circuit around the Malahide Inner Estuary as a great starting point (see Broadmeadow Inner Estuary - Swords Malahide Donabate ). The space is available, and some of the infrastructure is already in place. Completing this route will provide a fabulous amenity for all of the people of Fingal, especially those in the Swords, Donabate and Malahide areas. In time, the 'Donabate Causeway' part of this route will rival the pier at Howth as a favourite day trip for all of the people of Dublin.

We will be suggesting the use of boardwalks along some parts of the route. Martin County, Florida has successfully used boardwalks in it's 'Greenways' programme:
www.martin.fl.us/GOVT/depts/gmd/greenways/

Naturally, an environmental impact study will be required for sensitive areas around the estuary, but we believe if the swans and the estuary have survived building the M1 bridge over them, they will survive a well designed pedestrian / cycleway.

Sunday, September 17, 2006

In town without my car! European Car Free Day on Friday Sep 22 2006:

If you normally drive to work, and you have a viable alternative, why not give it a try on European Car Free Day. You might enjoy it, it may even improve your health, and you'll also be doing your little bit for the environment.

To discover more about European Car Free Day, click on the above image.

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Useful businesses and services in Fingal

We list here for free, links to businesses and services that you may find useful within Fingal. In return, the businesses shown here have agreed to link to us from their site.

A big 'Thank you for your support' to each of these businesses.

Remember......if you choose to travel by bike.....you have the right to expect to travel in safety.

Map My Business
Map My Business helps businesses to attract more customers, increase sales and reduce costs. 
Visit www.mapmybusiness.com to:
  • See how customers are using www.GoogleMaps.com to locate businesses selling the products and services they want to buy
  • Learn how to list your business on Google Maps at no cost
  • Understand the benefits of engaging Map My Business to list your business for you 

Richies bike store
Located in the Town Centre Mall in Swords, Richies bike store is less than 1km from the proposed Broadmeadow Cycle Way. Richies bike store carries a large range, and can cater for all your cycling needs. With the closing of the Malahide bicycle shop, it is important to support our local suppliers.

DESIGNER WINE
'Designer Wine is committed to only stocking and supplying superior wines and champagnes. We stand over every bottle with a 100% guarantee of satisfaction or the customer receives a 100% no quibble refund.'

Kiddimatters
'Help your child learn to cycle without stabilisers with a Wallaby Trainer. No more aching back, the jacket contains a gripper to support your child without needing to bend down, and teaches the child to balance the bike themselves thereby speeding up the process and building confidence. Features reflective strips for extra safety'

Sunday, September 10, 2006

The goals of the Fingal Safe Cycling Action Group:
- To accelerate the provision of safe cycle ways in Fingal in keeping with the objectives set out in the Fingal Development plan 2005-2011[1], and the Donabate Strategic Environmental Assessment (March 2006)[2]. Maps - Proposed safe cycling routes

- To specifically accelerate the following objectives in the Fingal Development plan:

Transportation Objective TO28
To prepare and implement on a progressive basis a programme for the development of the Fingal Coastal Way for pedestrians and cyclists, extending from the county boundary with Dublin City to the county boundary with County Meath.

Transportation Objective TO29
To ensure where possible that cycleways and footpaths are effectively separated from major vehicular carriageways.

Community ObjectiveCIO4
To ensure that sites (community facilities) are accessible by a range of travel modes, particularly by public transport, pedestrians and cyclists.

Examples of the projects we would like to accelerate include:
1. Provide safe cycle way along the coast between Portmarnock and Malahide. Specifically we propose:
1.1. Upgrade and widen the existing coastal pedestrian path between Portmarnock and Malahide to provide a split pedestrian / cycle path.
1.2. Provide pedestrian / cycle lights at the entrance to Malahide United’s soccer ground at Gannon Park, where approximately 1,000 children train weekly.
1.3. Continue the combined walkway / cycle path behind the Malahide Tennis Club / Malahide Yacht Club / Malahide Sea Scouts den, and provide link with a safe cycle way along the south shore of Broadmeadow estuary, thus providing a continuous safe cycle way linking community facilities on the coast to those on the estuary including Fingal Sailing school, Malahide Sailing Club, Swords Sailing Club and Malahide Rugby club.

2. Provide safe cycle way along south shore of Broadmeadow Estuary linking Seabury with Malahide village. Specifically we propose:
2.1. Complete the new gravel pathway from Seabury to Malahide village along south shore of Estuary:
2.1.1. This requires new cycle/pedestrian bridge over stream at Barrack Bridge.
2.1.2. Upgrade and widen the path to accommodate both pedestrians and cyclists.

3. Provide a safe cycle way around the Broadmeadow Estuary. Specifically we propose:
3.1. Provide safe cycle / pedestrian path at Swords end of the estuary.
3.2. Widen the non-tidal path on the north shore to cater for cyclists / pedestrians.
3.3. Extend the non-tidal path to cater for cyclists / pedestrians on the north shore to the start of the causeway.
3.4. Complete the circuit by providing cycle / pedestrian route across the causeway between Donabate and Malahide as per item 153 in the Donabate Strategic Environmental Assessment (March 2006)[3].

4. Update the plan for a new park at Robswall to include provision of Cycle ways through the park.

5. Provide safe cycle ways linking all of the public parks and open spaces in Fingal.

6. Provide safe cycle routes to all schools in Fingal in co-operation with the Green Schools initiative.


[1] Fingal Development Plan - http://www.fingalcoco.ie/devplan/yourfingal/Stage4/written_statement/index.html
[2] http://www.fingalcoco.ie/YourLocalCouncil/Services/Planning/PlanningItemsOnDisplay/DonabateDraftLAP/SEA/report.pdf
[3] 153 That Fingal County Council seeks the provision of a public walkway/cycleway through the Western side of Variation 34 Lands in Donabate and along the existing railway embankment across the Malahide Estuary, in consultation with Iarnrod Eireann within the lifespan of this Development Plan.

Friday, September 08, 2006

Links to other Irish Cycling Sites

Dublin Cycling Campaign The aim of the DCC is to encourage cycling and to represent the interests of everyday cyclists - to make the streets safer for cyclists and to increase public awareness of the benefits of cycling.

Sutton2Sandycove S2S is a voluntary group whose sole objective is to promote the construction of a continuous seafront promenade and cycleway from Sutton to Sandycove.

Dundalk Cycling Alliance Dundalk Cycling Alliance, formed in 2004, aims to promote safe cycling and a better quality of urban life through the provision of cycle lanes in Dundalk and throughout Louth.
This site publicises the work done by each councillor to assist the campaign.

Galway Cycling Campaign
The GCC is a group that exists to forward the interests of ordinary everyday adult bicycle users with the following core aims:
Safer conditions for cycling
Planning that gives equal priority to all road users
Improvement of existing facilities
Secure parking for bikes
Recognition of the rights and responsibilities of all road users by all road users

http://www.corkcyclingcampaign.com/
The cork cycling campaign's mission statement says 'We want to get the message out that cycling is an enjoyable,viable,healthy,practical and quick mode of transport and also to make cycling safer for all cyclists,especially for utilitarian cyclists,including children.'

www.greenschoolsireland.org
Check out the schools travel pilot on this excellent site.

Cycle Touring Club of Ireland
Information on bike touring in Ireland.

Cycling Ireland
Cycling Ireland aims to promote and develop all aspects of cycling as a healthy, enjoyable and friendly lifetime activity for everyone, and as an exciting sport for both competitors and spectators.

Dublin Wheelers
Dublin Wheelers is a Fingal based cycling club founded in 1933. They have just set up a new website for the club and are seeking content contributions from members.

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