Car loses out in race into town centre

September 27, 2006 11:38 PM
Lib Dem campaigners reach the steps of County Hall Chelmsford

Cyclist Stephen Robinson; bus user Keith Francis, and pedestrian Rene Firth take the transport challenge to County Hall

Driving a car is a slow form of transport if you are trying to get around Chelmsford, according to a transport race staged last Friday. It was 'In Town Without My Car' day and a bus, a car, cyclists and a pedestrian competed to see who would be first to get to the steps of county hall in Chelmsford's town centre from the Moulsham Lodge neighbourhood.

Cycle Group member Ian Wilkes sends cyclist and bus user on their way

Cycle Group member Ian Wilkes sends cyclist and bus user on their way in the race into town

The contest was staged by the Chelmsford Cycling Action Group. They invited Lib Dem county councillor Keith Francis to join their members for this event. Cllr Francis boarded a bus; his Lib Dem colleague Stephen Robinson (a member of the Cycle Action Group) cycled with other Group members, and local Lib Dem member Rene Firth walked. One Cycle Group member took his car to complete the line up.

The bus arrived first, less than a minute in front of the cyclists. The car was 10 minutes after that, followed closely by the pedestrian.

Cllr Keith Francis said: "This test underlines the fact that if the right facilities are provided for alternative forms of transport, they are a more effective and efficient way of getting around and, crucially, they create less damaging emissions. More investment in buses, cycle paths and footpaths will create a congestion free and greener Essex."

Stephen Robinson added, "If we had all left when the bus SHOULD have left, eight minutes earlier, cycling would have been the clear winner with pedestrian-power just behind the bus, and cycling helps us keep fit too."