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Brighton & Hove City Council rejects Tory demand for five-fold increase in cycle hangar fees

Conservative councillors claimed subsidy for bike parking facilities would be better spent on frontline services.

Brighton & Hove City Council has passed its budget for the coming year, and in so doing  rejected a demand from Tory councillors that the cost of using bike hangars be increased five-fold from £1 to £5 a week.

Conservative councillors had claimed that £125,000 subsidy set aside in the Labour-controlled council’s budget for Falco, the company behind the hangars, to maintain them would be better spent on frontline services and that people allocated spaces within them to park their bikes should pay more.

According to Brighton & Hove News, there are currently more than 110 such hangars in the East Sussex city, although a council consultation in 2021 identified demand for such facilities in around 500 streets there.

Alistair McNair,  who leads the Tory group on the council, said: “We in the Conservative group feel that those using these cycle hangars should cover this cost.

“An increase in the fee to £5 per week would more than cover the cost of maintenance and allow investment in more cycle hangars, if wanted by residents.

“Taxpayers should not have to fund luxuries like cycle hangars for other residents who are then getting a bargain deal for using them.

“It shows a lack of fairness when seen against a backdrop of cuts to services used by the disabled, children, the elderly and the vulnerable,” he added.

But Labour councillor Trevor Muten, chair of the council’s Transport and Sustainability Committee, said that the hangars perform a valuable function and that the cost of using them would not be reviewed.

“As a city with a high number of flats and many people without access to private garden or cycle space, the hangars have been crucial in providing a convenient, safe and affordable space for bikes,” he said.

“Affordability was factored in when the cycle hangar project was introduced and we have no current plans to review the cost paid by residents for hangar spaces.

“We realise that, in some areas of the city, the introduction of any more cycle hangars needs to be balanced with the availability of parking space and this will factor into our parking review process.”

But confirming the £924 million 2024/25 budget yesterday after it was passed without amendment on Thursday evening, the council said that this year was the 15th in succession in which it had seen a real-terms reduction in funding from central government.

The start of that period coincides with the formation  of Conservative-Liberal Democrat Coalition Government in the wake of the 2010 General Election, with the Tories subsequently in sole control of Parliament from 2015 onwards.

Bella Sankey, leader of Brighton & Hove City Council, said: “Despite us seeing the largest ever real terms cut in money from central government of £30 million, we’ve still been able to produce a balanced budget,” adding that the council had “been able to invest more than £27 million in key frontline services.”

Despite the strong demand for secure bike parking spaces in Brighton & Hove, the hangars, which provide parking for six bicycles in the space that would be occupied by one car, have met with some local protests, including contractors installing them being “surrounded” by local residents opposed to them.

> Residents “threatened with police” after “surrounding” contractors installing bike hangar

Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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43 comments

Avatar
NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
5 likes

If money is so tight perhaps the Conservatives could ask their colleagues in Westminster to drop less bombs on brown people halfway round the world and spend the money on things that would benefit the people paying for them?

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Left_is_for_Losers replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

NOtotheEU wrote:

If money is so tight perhaps the Conservatives could ask their colleagues in Westminster to drop less bombs on brown people halfway round the world and spend the money on things that would benefit the people paying for them?

Ah yes, a brilliant leftie idea! Let's just let the "brown people" drop bombs on all our shipping, and cause huge price increases and delays for us, the consumers, and not to mention fear and terror amongst the shipping industry.

And once they're bored of that, they can start dropping bombs on more serious targets, how about some British warships - they arent very expensive. 

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NOtotheEU replied to Left_is_for_Losers | 1 month ago
1 like

British warships shouldn't be there. If we didn't meddle in other countries we wouldn't be a target. Killing some innocent people alongside the targets just to get cheaper prices is not a trade I want to make. In fact the drive for cheaper consumer goods here causes much more problems than this all over the world.
And your taxes are paying for the weapons to make your shopping cheaper so it's costing you one way or another.

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Left_is_for_Losers replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

NOtotheEU wrote:

British warships shouldn't be there. If we didn't meddle in other countries we wouldn't be a target. Killing some innocent people alongside the targets just to get cheaper prices is not a trade I want to make. In fact the drive for cheaper consumer goods here causes much more problems than this all over the world. And your taxes are paying for the weapons to make your shopping cheaper so it's costing you one way or another.

So you're happy to let terrorists randomly target and destroy ships for a laugh? Ships sailing under the British flag? If you let people get away with whatever they want, it only emboldens them - the next time it might be cruise ship or anything. 

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NOtotheEU replied to Left_is_for_Losers | 1 month ago
4 likes

We call Houthis terrorists because they are in a civil war with a regime we support while making a nice profit selling weapons to the Saudis to attack them.

If we were against the regime or selling weapons to their backers, Iran, we'd call them freedom fighters.

I've never met a Houthi, they have never done anything to me personally and from what little I know about the history of Yemen it is a lot more nuanced than just good vs evil. 

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Left_is_for_Losers replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
0 likes

NOtotheEU wrote:

We call Houthis terrorists because they are in a civil war with a regime we support while making a nice profit selling weapons to the Saudis to attack them.

Other than the fact they are indiscriminately shelling and lobbing missiles at merchant shipping which has absolutely nothing to do with them. 

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brooksby replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
4 likes

NOtotheEU wrote:

We call Houthis terrorists because they are in a civil war with a regime we support while making a nice profit selling weapons to the Saudis to attack them.

If we were against the regime or selling weapons to their backers, Iran, we'd call them freedom fighters.

I remember when the Taliban were the good guys and we supported them in their brave fight for independence (because their opposition was supported by the then USSR).

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NOtotheEU replied to brooksby | 1 month ago
3 likes

Sadam Hussain and Colonel Gaddafi were the good guys once too.

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ktache replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
1 like

More "Our" son of a bitch!

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chrisonabike replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
3 likes

NOtotheEU wrote:

I've never met a Houthi ...

Think this is them?

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Rendel Harris replied to chrisonabike | 1 month ago
3 likes

I hope not, they may scare easily but they'll be back and in greater numbers.

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Rendel Harris replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
1 like

NOtotheEU wrote:

We call Houthis terrorists because they are in a civil war with a regime we support while making a nice profit selling weapons to the Saudis to attack them.

I totally take your point about our involvement in Middle Eastern affairs and our tendency to classify groups as terrorist or freedom fighters more or less arbitrarily depending on how useful they are to us, but as their organisational slogan is:
 

Quote:

God is the Greatest
Death to America
Death to Israel
A Curse Upon the Jews
Victory to Islam

I don't think they're going to be remembered as one of the most misunderstood, only fighting for their own freedom groups in the whole sorry mess.

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Hirsute replied to Rendel Harris | 1 month ago
3 likes

I'm confused  - are bike hanger advocates terrorists or freedom fighters ?

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Rendel Harris replied to Hirsute | 1 month ago
3 likes

.

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chrisonabike replied to Hirsute | 1 month ago
3 likes

Hirsute wrote:

I'm confused  - are bike hanger advocates terrorists or freedom fighters ?

Terrorists and invaders!  They nearly kill people every day.  Occupying our hole-y roads, infiltrating our safe (parking) spaces.  They even plot to tear up our sacred grass (verge - for a cycle path).

Hanger's too good for them.

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NOtotheEU replied to Rendel Harris | 1 month ago
1 like

Agreed. We know the powers that be label them as terrorists not because of their slogan but because, as you said, they aren't useful to us.

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john_smith replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

Sailing through the Red Sea is completely legal, and it isn't "meddling in other countries". No matter how you spin it, the Houthis are the criminals here and the UK has every right to act.

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NOtotheEU replied to john_smith | 1 month ago
3 likes

john_smith wrote:

Sailing through the Red Sea is completely legal, and it isn't "meddling in other countries". No matter how you spin it, the Houthis are the criminals here and the UK has every right to act.

If you aren't trolling me and you genuinely believe that we haven't spent years destabilising the middle east by 'meddling in other countries' then I can fully understand your world view, but it differs to mine.

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john_smith replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

I doubt very much that you understand my "world view", since what you are suggesting I believe has nothing to do with what I wrote. And just in case it wasn't clear, I was talking about merchant ships.

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NOtotheEU replied to john_smith | 1 month ago
0 likes

john_smith wrote:

I doubt very much that you understand my "world view"

Fair point, I'm happy to be corrected if I got it wrong.

From what You wrote I assumed that you believe the Houthis actions are completely unrelated to anything we have done in the past (EDIT: or who we support now), thereby making them wrong and justifing our bombing them and that we have not meddled in other countries affairs in the middle east and destabilised the region.

Please accept my apologies if I misunderstood your views and this is wrong.

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perce replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

Agreed. And if tory twats like Lee Anderson had their way they would be bombing targets closer to home.

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chrisonabike replied to perce | 1 month ago
1 like

perce wrote:

Agreed. And if tory twats like Lee Anderson had their way they would be bombing targets closer to home.

It's rude to shell people you've not been introduced to.  Locals you've decided are wrong'uns though...

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john_smith replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
2 likes

You're happy if the Houthi's sink merchant ships then?

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NOtotheEU replied to john_smith | 1 month ago
0 likes

john_smith wrote:

You're happy if the Houthi's sink merchant ships then?

Not personally, no.

Those 'UK registered' ships are usually sailing under flags of convenience to reduce costs and avoid regulations and are full of Chinese products on their way to sell to us so we can help prop up their regime.

In my book that makes it China's problem, not ours.

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chrisonabike replied to NOtotheEU | 1 month ago
1 like

I must admit I'm getting confused these days (years), what with us spending a bit of cash on buying someone else bombs to to repel an invasion but also doing the opposite elsewhere.  Plus in the first case the people shelled often don't look like the people who sent them there.

What happened to the happier, simpler times when we could feel good about not shelling other people (mostly - or at least doing so quietly [1] [2]) and simply selling bombs to those whose morality we could assess more easily (e.g. by their wealth)?

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NOtotheEU replied to chrisonabike | 1 month ago
2 likes

I understand your confusion but it's easy if you remember this simple rule;
We are the good guys so everything we do is automatically good and any regime or group that disagrees with us is evil so everything they do is automatically evil.
It saves you a lot of time thinking about complicated events and means your concience is never troubled.

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wtjs | 1 month ago
5 likes

We in the Conservative group feel that those using these cycle hangars should cover this cost

It shows a lack of fairness when seen against a backdrop of cuts to services used by the disabled, children, the elderly and the vulnerable

Aneurin Bevan was right! It's typical of them to shelter behind an insincere concern for the disadvantaged when what they're really bothered about is the right of people in 2-tonne energy guzzlers to disproportionately damage public roads and have places to park at public expense.

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BIRMINGHAMisaDUMP | 1 month ago
8 likes

5 quid a week x 52 weeks equals 260 quid a year. Times that by six bikes equals 1560 quid.  1 hangar with six bikes takes up 1 car parking space.  Therefore 1 parking permit for 1 car is worth 1560 quid per annum.  Ok, that sounds fair. Let's balance it out and make car parking permits 1500 per year. 

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qwerty360 replied to BIRMINGHAMisaDUMP | 1 month ago
1 like

And that assumes only 6 bikes for one car space.

I thought they ran at something like 16 for 2 car spaces - 1 car space ends up with fairly high inefficiencies to keep it within the parking space area.

At which point it is 260 * 8 = £2080 for the car parking space...

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eburtthebike | 1 month ago
9 likes

“Taxpayers should not have to fund luxuries like cycle hangars for other residents who are then getting a bargain deal for using them.

But it's fine for cyclists, pedestrians and public transport users to fund more roads and more parking?

“It shows a lack of fairness when seen against a backdrop of cuts to services used by the disabled, children, the elderly and the vulnerable,” he added.

Isn't it odd that things only become a matter of fairness for tories when it's anyone but drivers getting the subsidy.

Getting more people cycling is essential for a fair society, and even if the parking was free, it would still be a massive gain.  But if there's one thing we know, it's that tories are blinkered, only interested in short term profits, and can't see past the end of their noses.  So out of touch that they aren't just on another planet, they're in a different solar system.

 

 

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