This review has been prepared on behalf of the Mole
Valley Cycle Forum by a group of, predominantly, resident Dorking cyclists
with the aim of highlighting features which deter cycling within and around
the town centre. To facilitate the review a walkabout was completed on
a Saturday afternoon in November, with photographs taken to illustrate
the issues raised (some supplementary photos added later). The group has
made suggestions and identified some small projects they felt would assist
in improving safety and accessibility for cyclists in Dorking without reducing
safety of pedestrians. Indeed, the group also felt it necessary to highlight
some of the difficulties faced by pedestrians in the same area.
The focus of the review is predominantly Dorking
town centre, although other key areas on the periphery of Dorking, notably
the A24 Pixham Lane roundabout and the A24/A25 Deepdene roundabout are
also evaluated. However the review is not intended as a comprehensive audit
of Dorking's existing cycling infrastructure and facilities, nor did the
group address projects that might fall within the Safe Routes to School'
In summary the group wishes to specifically highlight:
The continuing issue of cycle (and pedestrian) safety at Deepdene Roundabout,
particularly at peak periods
The inadequacy of existing traffic control measures at Pump Corner and,
further, along to Waitrose and Junction Road
The difficulties faced by cyclists navigating the one way system, notably
Vincent Lane and West Street
The poor design of cyclist and pedestrian facilities at Pixham Lane roundabout
The poor location and design of cycle parking facilities
the comparatively short duration of the walkabout, the group observed,
considerable cycling activity and the challenges safely cycling in and
around Dorking on an averagely busy Saturday afternoon were clearly apparent.
Domination of road space by motorised vehicles requires cyclists to be
ingenious, creative and often illegal in the choice of routes and parking,
as highlighted in the photos.
Although there has been some investment in cycle
facilities in recent years, increased traffic density and speeds has now
compromised the effectiveness of such measures. The safety needs for cyclists
and pedestrians within this changed environment is now such that existing
provision is inadequate. If people are to be encouraged to cycle and walk
for the shorter journeys into Dorking, increased commitment of resources
into the design and provision of more effective facilities should now be
a key priority.