* For Immediate Release *
For the sixth time this year, Stop Killing Cyclists, the cycling activist group, will commemorate a person killed by a lorry while riding her bicycle, with a Vigil and Die-In.
The person being remembered is 32 year old Esther Hartsilver, who died as a result of her bicycle being hit by a lorry on Denmark Hill at the junction with Orpheus Street just before 8am on Thursday, 28th May.
Esther was on her way to Kings College Hospital where she worked in the Physiotherapy Department but very sadly died of her injuries at the hospital.
Stop Killing Cyclists will begin gathering from 6pm on Monday 8th June at Camberwell Green, and the vigil will formally start after 6.30pm. In this sadly increasingly familiar sight on the streets of London, short speeches will be given, candles lit, and flowers laid around a ghost bike in memory of Ms Hartsilver, before hundreds of people will lay on the road, many with their bikes.
Traffic will be brought to a standstill for two minutes, and all will be given a space to contemplate the terrible price paid by Esther Hartsilver, and by cyclists and pedestrians killed and seriously injured on the streets of London.
Southwark Council (LBS) is notorious for poor cycling provision, and must take responsibility, along with the construction industry, for this latest tragedy. They are complicit in her death. Southwark Council’s Transport Department proposed a by-pass two years ago to allow cyclists to avoid that junction by using Love Walk, but Deputy Leader Labour Cllr Ian Wingfield refused this proposal due to cyclists being according to him “a danger to pedestrians” - thus insisting all cyclists, including children to use the major junctions.
Stop Killing Cyclists co-founder Donnachadh McCarthy said:
“Let’s make sure Southwark Council is held accountable for their murderous policies. They refused a proposal to have a bypass because (they said) it would endanger pedestrians on Love Walk”
Release Dated: 1 June 2015
Event Listings (including feeder rides info):
Stop Killing Cyclists calls on Southwark Council and Transport for London to truly recognise that cycling must be a priority for road design and transport planning if London is to become a safe place for everyone to cycle, not just the fit and the brave, but the pensioner, the child, the parent taking children to school, the ordinary person going about their daily business.
Transport for London must appoint cycling representatives to its board, to balance the representatives of the HGV and taxi industries. It should allocate 10% of its budget to cycling provision, and ensure that every facet of road maintenance, building and planning considers the needs of people to cycle.
Southwark Council must take immediate action to provide protected lanes for people who cycle in this busy borough. No money has been spent on segregated cycle lanes in the borough in 4 years, with LBS having deleted ALL cycle provision proposals in the Peckham & Camberwell Action Plan. Camberwell Green Junction is being refurbished and Southwark Council are refusing to include safe protected left hand turns for cyclists. We call on LBS to reverse their policy on both Camberwell Green and the junction where Esther Hartsilver was killed IMMEDIATELY. It is criminal not to make improvements.
See http://www.nhs.uk/news/2014/02february/pages/cycling-safety-a-special-report.aspx for statistics re the health benefits of riding a bike and what needs to be done to cut down the cost to the country through KSIs.
Stop Killing Cyclists is the direct action protest group set up in November 2013 after the terrible spate of cyclist killings in London. They arranged the first mass Die-In at TfL HQ where 1,500 cyclists laid down in the road in protest at lack of safety investment in London.
All photos on the website are available for media use (with credit given to the photographer and Stop Killing Cyclists), and representatives are available for interviews and media contact by emailing [email protected] or by calling Donnachadh on 07947 884299