Cycling and the Justice System

The ‘All Party Parliamentary Cycling Group’ have posted a request for evidence to allow them to review the case for cyclists and how incidents are handled by the Justice system. Our members may like to assist by forwarding their own experiences. The deadline for submitting evidence is the 16th of January 2017.

The below text was taken from their website at

In early 2017 we will be conducting an inquiry called ‘Cycling and the Justice System’. The select committee styled enquiry will seek the views and experiences of cycling organisations, Government departments and ministers, individuals and members of the general public on whether the current judicial system is serving all cyclists.

We are calling for cyclists who have been involved in road traffic incidents, or friends and families who have sought justice in their absence, to participate in their public inquiry which will run until 28 February.

The APPCG will run four oral evidence sessions in January and February 2017 on the following issues:

  1. Road users and victims
  2. Enforcement and investigation
  3. Criminal Law
  4. Driver awareness and civil justice

These are some of the issues that could be investigated:

  • Should there be greater priority of traffic law enforcement and’ road crime’ for all police forces?
  • Should police forces enforce 20mph speed limits, and speed reduction?
  • Should there be a revision of careless and dangerous driving charging standards
  • Should the ‘presumed liability’ civil compensation system be introduced?
  • Do police investigation, criminal prosecution, sentencing and inquests need reviewing?
  • How are prosecutors trained on the distinction between “careless” and “dangerous” driving?
  • Should there be more use of lengthy driving bans and resisting hardship pleas by the courts?
  • Should the DfT, Home Office and MOJ collaborate on collision and conviction data?
  • Should the Police and CPS be required to report on how they deal with road collisions?
  • Should there be a National Standards on collision investigation?
  • Should road crash victims be covered by the Victims’ Code?
  • Does the Highway Code need updating to reflect an increased duty of care on drivers?
  • Should there be a clearer definition of what is the standard of the competent and careful driver?
  • Should police forces/the CPS release the collision report when complete, and prior to conclusion of the criminal process?

If you would like to submit evidence to the inquiry, please email us your comments or experiences. Please submit a maximum of two pages of A4 and choose no more than five issues that you consider are the most important for us to consider in this inquiry. Please use ‘APPCG Justice Inquiry’ as the subject of the email.

The deadline for submitting evidence is the 16th of January 2017.


Touring Rides Galore in 2016

There were over a hundred touring rides this year; there would have been more but some were cancelled due to bad weather.

Our last touring ride of 2016 was this morning (Thursday) which included a refreshment stop at the Luna Rossa Italian Restaurant in Newhaven, one of our favourite places to stop for morning coffee. We had intended to go to Rottingdean but the weather conditions suggested the risk of black ice on the higher ground between Newhaven and Peacehaven. We decided it was safer to cut the ride short at Newhaven; the thought of an excellent cup of coffee at the Luna Rossa helped with the decision making!

As usual we had a warm welcome at the restaurant, practised our Italian and drank some superb coffee. Then, before returning to Seaford we cycled along Fort Rd to West Side Promenade; there’s a good view of Seaford Head from there.

This was our 103rd touring ride of 2016 and was one of our shorter rides at just ten miles. Most of our rides this year have been between 20 and 45 miles; the total distance covered by all our rides being about 3,500 miles.

Our longest rides, all round trips, have been via Littlehampton (70 miles), Hastings Pier (51 miles) and Worthing Pier (also 51 miles). There was also a 200K (125 miles) Challenge Ride which comprised numerous laps around a Figure of Eight route passing through Arlington, Chalvington and Ripe.

One of our most enjoyable and easiest rides of the year was a tour of Romney Marsh, a ride of a tad under 50 miles. We simply put the bikes in the backs of our cars and drove to Rye Harbour; it took about an hour to drive there. We’ll do more of those ‘drive and ride’ trips in 2017.

All our rides include refreshment stops and during the year I’ve been updating a map (Google Maps) to show the locations and brief details of those we’ve found to be welcoming to cyclists. There are now 25 refreshment stops on the map. The link to it is: Refreshment Stops

This map may be of use to anyone who is planning a ride and looking for somewhere to stop for a rest and some nourishment. But, please don’t arrive in mud splattered clothing and footwear as the welcome may not be so friendly, especially at restaurants.

Our next touring ride will be on New Year’s Day, weather permitting. Hopefully, this will be the first of another 100+ rides in 2017.

Happy New Year,


Revised Grading System for All Rides

A group of Ride Leaders has been reviewing the Grading System for Cycle Seahaven rides over the last year and has produced, what they believe to be, a simpler and more easily understood version. The group consisted of Road and Off-road Ride Leaders and the result has been through many re-drafts and consultations before being agreed by your Committee.

It may be viewed here .
It will be published on the CS website shortly and will be in operation for all rides as from January 1st 2017.

A Highly Convivial Evening

A highly convivial evening was had by twenty-three of us at the British Legion last Thursday. We were there for the Cycle Seahaven ‘Tourers’ Christmas meal; we’d been there last year and enjoyed our Christmas meal so much that we decided to make a return visit.

In contrast to last year when entertainment was provided by Elvis Presley and Elton John (they certainly looked and sounded like the real thing) which was great fun, this year the evening started with Christmas carols sung by Seaford Primary School. A lot of people had turned up to hear them: obviously, mums, dads and grandparents. The children finished their singing to rapturous applause by everyone.

Shortly afterwards we sat down at our table, pulled crackers and commenced our meal. And, very good it was too. Now, the tourers, are finely tuned athletes so we have to watch our diet. However, we felt that on this special occasion we could indulge in some alcoholic beverage; after all, there’s a good selection of beers at the British Legion as well as some fine wine so it would be a shame not to taste some! And, we didn’t have a cycle ride planned for the following morning. So, a fair bit was drunk and there was much merriment: a good time was had by all!

Many thanks go to Dave Sutton who did most of the organising. It was great value for money and already there’s talk of doing it again next year.

Merry Christmas everyone,



Local footpath being upgraded to allow cyclists

*** Update – 27th March 2017.  The path is now open for use.

Footpath Clearance, ready for the cycle way

Footpath open and ready for use

Footpath open and ready for use


By Andy Lock, on October 31st, 2016:

The footpath at the end of the A259 walking/cycling path between Newhaven and Peacehaven is being upgrade to allow cyclists. This is an ideal alternative for cyclists looking to ride between Peacehaven and Newhaven whilst avoiding the bottleneck on the approach to Downland Avenue. The official notice suggest this will be complete by the end of November.

As one of the items identified by Cycle Seahaven’s review of Peacehaven (  it’s great to see this short section being upgraded to allow safer cycle journeys between Newhaven and Peacehaven on National Cycle Network route #2.

A259 to Ashington Gardens

Footpath ‘Peacehaven 12’ between A259 and Ashington Gardens



Cycle Seahaven’s list of ideas for Peacehaven:

Our campaigns page:

A27 East of Lewes – Cycle Seahaven reposnse

The consultation for the improvements to the A27 is now closed (on 8th Dec 2016). Cycle Seahaven responded to the consultation to ensure that non-motorised traffic could safely use and cross this main highway.

The summary of our response based on feedback from members, committee and Cycle East Sussex is:

Many of our club rides make use of the extensive network of bridleways on both sides of the A27 necessitating in the need to cross this busy road to continue to the villages, roads and bridleways on the other side. There are some particular crossings where we would like to see such cycling provision: Firle; Middle farm; Selmeston; Drusillas; Wilmington. Without such crossing points there is a real risk  to cyclists, pedestrians and drivers because individuals often have to dash across the road or risk hovering half way waiting for a break in the opposing traffic. Whilst we understand that traffic needs to flow freely we would argue without safe crossing points communities are segregated and people excluded from visiting areas they would choose to go. Central reservations help but on a fast flowing road like the A27 the risk to novice riders, children, less able pedestrians and mobility scooters is significant and any collision is likely to have a very serious impact on traffic flow (as recent road closures have demonstrated). Ideally, controlled crossings would be installed at the locations mentioned above because, in our view, they would provide the following benefits for ALL road users:

  1.  Safety would be improved for drivers of vehicles, pedestrians and cycle users as the risk of serious collision would be greatly reduced. The risk of major traffic congestion or the closing of the A27 as a result of a collision is  also significantly less.
  2. Communities and vulnerable people would be less segregated with greater benefits for tourists and visitors to East Sussex (cycle and pedestrian links to tourist attractions such as Drusillas, Middle farm, South Downs Way, Rail services, etc)
  3. Pedestrian crossings operate on an on demand basis and only restrict the free flow of traffic when there is a need to do so. The majority of the time vehicle users would be unhampered by their operation.
  4. Improved linking of existing cycle routes on both sides of the A27 building on the investment already made by the county to improve health, reduce pollution, etc.

To read our full and detailed response you can download a copy here: Our response

Our original news entry on these proposals was posted here: A27 East of Lewes – infrastructure schemes

MTB 2B via Piddinghoe, Big Park, Court Farm Road, OVT to the Marttello


Roy led  11 of us off from the White Lion. We picked up 2 riders in Newhaven and had a total of 13 participants with more or less chilly fingers, depending on the state of their gloves, in glorious winter sunshine. We didn’t find any icy surfaces to slide around on, though I was wondering if our Roadie colleagues negotiated the frost pockets safely? From C7 we headed through Dean’s farm, via Big Park and across A259 to The Highway. We turned right on the drop down Court Farm road and into the back of Newhaven and along the river eventually picking up OVT and having a very welcome cuppa at the Martello.

It’s worth mentioning that a couple of riders are now managing descents in the ready position, instead of walking and tho my Garmin was messing about it looks like we averaged 8MPH+  this morning which would be our quickest yet I believe….?


Winter’s Arrived and so has Black Ice!

A sharp frost on Thursday morning kicked off the Winter season, that’s the meteorological version of Winter, of course, being the 1st December.

But, there was no wind, the air was dry although a tad chilly and there was wall to wall sunshine: perfect conditions for an invigorating cycle ride. We delayed the start to allow the temperature to rise a bit and decided to keep to the coast rather than cycle inland. Country lanes can still be hiding black ice in shady parts till quite late in the morning so best avoided.

Five of us gathered at the Martello Tower at 10.30 am all dressed up in our Winter clobber and decided to have a short ride to a café in Peacehaven. Our ride started off well as we glided along the promenade, ‘sharing with care’ as the notices state. I have to say that since cycling was allowed on the promenade I’ve never experienced any problems and everyone seems happy about it. Well done Cycle Seahaven for campaigning on this issue.

We cycled through the Ouse Valley Nature Reserve, then through Newhaven and followed our usual route along Elphick Road, across the C7 and in to Valley Road. It was turning out to be a really pleasant cycle ride, the air felt fresh but not really cold, the sun was shining and there was the usual banter from my cycling companions.

I suppose you get a sixth sense about these things but it was Dave who sensed the danger first: black ice! We edged a bit nearer. Sure enough, there, in a shady part of Valley Road was that slippery stuff that can easily have you off your bike in a flash.

We could have walked on the pavement and avoided it but there was a good chance of more of the same higher up the road. So, we turned around, went back into Newhaven and continued past West Quay to the harbour. The sea was like mill pond; time for a photo.

Then it was off to the Luna Rossa café at West Quay for a coffee and a chat about how lucky we’d been to spot the black ice.

Happy Winter Cycling,