Why do we want Londoners to get involved with the Bespoke study?
The Bespoke project is about cyclists. To truly represent London’s cyclists we need them to be involved in the planning and development of the study.
The Bespoke team have recruited six individuals to act as public representatives for the study. They will be our go-to people for problem solving, advice on cyclists’ opinions, as well as reviewing the progress of the study. Bespoke also hopes to work with this group to publish results and share authorship in both medical and non-medical publications. The Bespoke team value the ideas and opinions of our public representatives; they have played a pivotal role in planning aspects of the study recruitment process and identifying what outcomes are important to cyclists.
Jess has been a cyclist from a young age having grown up in Cambridge. She has cycled in London as a commuter and for pleasure for the last 10 years, initially finding it a challenging experience. Jess has also cycled from Mexico to Nicaragua. Her undergraduate dissertation focused on the fear of cycling, drawing a comparison of London and Amsterdam. Having had several minor bike accidents and supporting friends to take up cycling in the capital, she appreciates that London can feel intimidating and dangerous by bike. Jess recognises however that cycling is a relatively safe activity and the health benefits outweigh the risks. Jess currently works for the London Borough of Camden on a road safety project which aims to manage work related road risk, particularly of HGVs.
Diana has spent much of her 15 years in London organising UK-based US citizens to support the American Democratic Party and its candidates for high office. Diana, a mother of two, is a dedicated cyclist who has ridden a bike nearly every day of her life from the age of six! With deepening concern about the environmental impact of motor vehicles, the escalating costs to productivity and health associated with traffic congestion, and the urgent need to relieve the mounting pressure on the NHS deriving from conditions related to lack of exercise, Diana believes Bespoke will have the ear of the public and of those city planners who can implement its recommendations. Diana sustained a serious head injury in a collision with a motorist in central London two years ago. Hence her determination to assist any effort that will inform better public policy and provision for cyclists, and to help prevent similar crises and disruption to the lives of others.
As a cyclist and researcher Juan-Carlos was really interested in supporting the Bespoke study. He has a vast amount of cycling experience, having lived and commuted to work by bike in several different countries. He currently commutes 8-10miles through East London back streets and parks and experiences many different types of dangers and scenarios where a cyclist’s safety can be on the line. As a researcher, Juan-Carlos has more than 10 years’ experience working with large data sets, analysing and disseminating information. Juan-Carlos considers his cycle to and from work as one of the best parts of his day and enjoys the benefits of cycling – he is more worried about safety than getting to his destination quickly. He is really happy to get involved in an initiative such as the Bespoke study that aims to make cycling safer and even more enjoyable.
Tom really wants to see cycling made safer in London and considers the Bespoke study and Collideoscope app as critical stepping stones to doing so. Tom recognises that car-bike collision injuries presenting to hospital A&E represent only the tip of the iceberg and hence the importance of Collideoscope gaining momentum. He considers himself ‘lucky’ enough only to have had two cycling injuries involving cars and broken bones but, as a regular cyclist, the ‘near misses’ are too numerous to mention. As a cycling lawyer, Tom really wants to see Bespoke generate useful data but also to see that data put to good work and find its way to the right people. This is a topic Tom feels very strongly about and decided he must act upon through joining the Bespoke public panel.
Nesta has been riding her bike for a few years, mostly commuting daily from Tottenham to her job in public health in Victoria. She loves riding in London, and feels the benefits far outweigh the risks, despite seeing near misses almost daily. Nesta supports the Bespoke study as the more robust data cyclists have, the better informed choices they can make. She is interested in the risk factors that contribute to accidents and injury. She believes Bespoke has the potential to contribute to making London more safe for cycling, as cycling should be accessible, reasonably safe and achievable for all.
Andrea is the founder of Vision Zero London, a road safety organisation whose aim is the adoption of Vision Zero principles. The main principle is that road design should take into consideration the fallibility and vulnerability of people; i.e. small errors should not be death sentences as they are in the UK at present. Andrea has twenty-five years’ experience of riding daily in London and has a keen interest in seeing the Bespoke study have a strong impact on reducing deaths of vulnerable road users.
There are still other ways you can get involved:
- Use our web-based app, bikemaps.org and tell us about your near miss incidents and minor injuries so that we can build a complete picture of what is happening on London’s roads.
- If you, like us, think the Bespoke study is a great way to look at an important issue in London, then tell your friends and family about it – don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook.
- The Bespoke Team are always interested to hear from like-minded people who can help spread the word about bikemaps.org to increase the number of reported near misses and crashes.