Fogwoft have examined the Draft (for GFT only) collectively. We welcome the key changes, the new realistic level of fines and the relaxation of some banned activities by the use of written (or licence) permissions by the Council (acoustic music can be humanising).
Now is not the time to suggest detailed edits. There will be time for all after Council Cabinet (12th July) for consultation. Nor is it time to look forward to the renewal of the Movement Management Scheme (MMS) and its operation under the new bye-law. The enforcement of any bye-law is critical and difficult, but we hope you can discuss the operations before the bye-law comes into force. We expect this not to be before 2018. Before then we recommend a full, best public discussion, of all these operations and would be keen to participate.
One major point that did strike us, however, was the definition of “vehicle” in Clause 3. This omits many forms of wheeled device whose use can be problematic in the tunnels. Skateboards, Scooters, Roller-blades* and -skates, Segways, and devices yet undreamed of should be covered. So should unicycles, perhaps by changing “bicycle” to “cycle”. (One of our committee just happens to be a unicyclist). Cl. 3 appears to ban any of these from being carried through the tunnel as well as being ridden. We won’t suggest an amendment, since the lawyers must have some form of wording, but recommend that “vehicle” should be defined up top.
We also suggest that, if the use of wheeled devices is to be permitted anywhere, its boundaries should be absolutely clear. That, we think, should only be between any signage permitting such riding. The bye-law itself may not be the place to write this in (since you may want it to be flexible) but the publicity campaign should make it clear. We should remember that fogwoft called for a suspension of the MMS because it was sending wholly unclear messages to tunnel users. Please let’s avoid that in future.
The proposed new bye-laws and a comparison with the existing may be viewed here; go to page 152 following.