Saturday, May 23, 2020

Park Lane Temporary Cycle And Walking Lane... Doesn’t Look That Temporary To Me πŸ‘€


Finally, absolute proof that these social distancing schemes from the Mayor Sadiq Khan, has nothing to do with actual social distancing. 

The widening of the pavement for Walking and Cycling along one side of one of London’s busiest A roads, was said by Heidi Alexander, on behalf of the Mayor, to be a “temporary measure“..... be honest, how temporary does this look.... in my eyes it looks permanent. 

The question still remains unanswered...as to why this scheme along Park Lane was  necessary, and why was it first implemented covertly under cover of darkness?

Just the other side on the pavement to the left travelling north, is 350 acres of social distancing space, containing adequate Walking space and multiple cycling lanes !!!!

Why has the Mayor, who is on the brink of bankrupting TfL, using funds to put in place this type of unnecessary, segregated area????

TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT: 
So Sadiq Khan says it’s not safe to walk or cycle along Park Lane without a two meter gap between walkers and cyclists

Yet he has encouraged the public to travel, herded into packs on the tubes and buses!!!
How many people have contracted the virus from travelling this way after being promised by Khan it was safe ???

By telling people It was completely safe to use buses and the tube, Khan has broken the social distancing laws and is responsible for the deaths of the many victims who contracted COVID19 this way.... he’s as guilty (if not more so) as Dominic Cummings and should resign immediately. 

If he fails to resign, he should be sacked. 

Don’t worry Heidi, I’m sure someone will give you a new job, 


just like Arup did for Boris’s deputy Mayor.... remember ? 


Haringey Council, Working On Cycling And Walking Schemes, With MAMIL Campaigners Calling For More

With local councillors and activists calling on Haringey Council to transform its streets to benefit cyclists and pedestrians as lockdown eases, the town hall revealed it was working on three programmes that would see the borough transformed over the next six months.

The town hall has also confirmed the Liveable Crouch End scheme is “on hold” at the request of Transport for London (TfL), but that many of the projects which could have formed part of the scheme which would have seen a redesigned town centre will instead be “fed into” TfL’s new StreetSpace programme.

The council’s environment chief moved to make clear the council is hoping to “bring forward east to west and north to south cycling routes” in the borough, and work was taking place from this month.

Local Lib Dem councillor for Crouch End Cllr Luke Cawley-Harrison has called for the town hall to make sure it made safe cycling and walking a priority and not to miss a chance to make cycling an viable alternative to car use.

He told this newspaper: “I think they’re doing some stuff, but it’s not enough. If people are going to start going back to work and the way they go back is by public transport then it puts them at risk – they will use cars if they don’t feel they can cycle safely. 

Many more people are keen to do so, or considering cycling, but Haringey doesn’t have the infrastructure.”


Cllr Kirsten Hearn (pictured above with her electric car), Haringey’s environment lead, said: “As people return to work, even a 10 per cent increase in car use will cause gridlock across London. 

For many, travelling on the Tube or bus will be impossible because the transport system is running at 20% capacity – to ensure that social distancing is adhered to for passenger’s safety.

“That is why we are working to provide temporary walking and cycling facilities in Haringey. 

This work will help Haringey residents travel, whilst ensuring that the necessary social distancing and safety measure measures are in place.

“We will also aim to bring forward east to west and north to south cycling routes, so that more residents can be confident that cycling is a safe, clean and efficient way to get around. We will also identify low traffic neighbourhoods to discourage use of cars.”


Simon Munk, from the London Cycling Campaign, told this newspaper the group had been disappointed with the speed of Haringey’s interventions compared to other London councils.

He said: “There are councils I fully expect to say they’re working on plans that will become reality.

“If that’s what’s happening in Haringey, and they’re taking the time to get things right, then great. But if it’s just warm words and nothing follows, I think the residents of Haringey will be quite angry.”

No conflict of interest here then Simon.... 
speaking from cycle shop

Drafts from the TfL StreetSpace plan’s identify a cycle route connecting the Green Lanes area with Crouch End as a “top priority”.

A Haringey spokesperson said the council was working on adjustment of street spaces to improve social distancing at pinch points on pavements, increasing active travel and tackling care use, and working to address the “legacy” of Covid-19 on its highways and considering how to implement low traffic neighbourhoods.

The council said proposed measures which had formed part of Liveable Crouch End – such as footway widening and cycle routes – would form part of the borough’s bids for funding from TfL’s StreetSpaces programme.

Reacting to the “pause” of Liveable Crouch End, the chair of the Crouch End Neighbourhood Forum (CENF) Mark Afford said: “The CENF is extremely disappointed at losing the expected £5m investment into Crouch End, we need it, though it’s ironic that three quarters of the project may well return as part of the Covid emergency work.”


Cllr Seema Chandwani – the council’s neighbourhoods lead – is heading up the plans to eradicate “pinch-points” and make pavements more amenable to social distancing.

She said: “We have listened to concerns from residents and where possible and safe to do so, we are temporarily extending pavement spaces outside shops that are attracting queues to enable people to walk safely down our high streets.”

Around 20 “pinch-points” have been identified and seen improvement so far, with Cllr Chandwani adding: “Our dedicated highways team is assessing and monitoring our high streets and various spaces to identify new areas that may also require adjustment during this time.”

Source: Ham&High

Friday, May 22, 2020

Uber Pulls The Plug On Jump Electric Bikes And Removes From Brussels Streets


After reports of it laying off all its employees at the end of last week, Uber Jump bikes are now disappearing from the streets of Brussels, according to reports from its competitors.

The decision by Uber’s shared bicycle company comes amid the capital’s rising interest in alternative mobility. Indeed, with the coronavirus health crisis, many users are avoiding public transport. Plus, the Brussels Region recently opened 40 km of extra cycling paths.

Uber – which is already a Lime shareholder – recently raised $ 170 million in funding (with the help of Alphabet) for the e-scooter company with the intention of transferring its own e-mobility platform – Jump – to there, according to L’Echo.

While the direct impact of this deal – whether Jump will reappear under a different guise – remains unclear, the effects were evident with the announced layoff of the Brussels team, something which competitors were quick to comment on.

“You may have read the news this morning that Uber has decided to lay off the Jump team in Brussels, which most likely means the end of their shared bike business,” Belgium’s Billy Bike said in an email to subscribers advertising discounts for people making the switch.

For Lime, despite a turbulent lockdown period halting users completely, the future looks potentially bright for the sector in Brussels.

“The vision is shared by everyone in the sector, this is the moment for micro-mobility. This is a historic moment to position our service as an alternative to public transport for the next six months,” Benjamin Barnathan, Lime’s country manager for Benelux, told NewMobility.
Lime isn’t alone in seeing the growth. Last week, Billy announced that its numbers had tripled between March and April. 

Furthermore, adding some competition to the sector, Brussels’ Villo! is now offering six months of free subscription.

For the meantime, the fate of Uber bikes in Belgium remains unclear. They have been removed from the streets,  Talk of being absorbed by Lime have been rumoured in the media, but the company remains quiet.

Source : The Brussels Times

Thursday, May 21, 2020

Londons 100% Wheel Chair Accessible Taxis, To Be Denied Access To Even More Of Central London’s Roads,

We all heard the news yesterday that the Mayor Sadiq Khan has plans to make large areas around the capital Bus and Cycle only. This includes two bridges, the Kingsway, Clerkenwell Road, Farringdon Road, Moorgate, Bishopsgate.... the list goes on and on. 

Also, Lambeth have announced their plans on stopping through traffic inside the Oval Triangle, and calling on neighbouring boroughs to do the same. 

The triangle is the area between Vauxhall, Oval and Stockwell stations. 

Amazingly the person behind the scheme Deputy Council leader, Labour and Co Op councillor Claire Holland, calls herself a trade unionist, a fighter for workers rights...yet is part to a scheme designed to affect and in some cases destroy a number of working class trades. 

Lambeth Council posted on Twitter... Oval Triangle is about to become an amazing low-traffic neighbourhood!

Yes to: πŸšΆπŸΎ‍♀️Walking, πŸ›΄Scooting, πŸš²Cycling
No to: πŸ€Rat-running traffic, πŸ’€Air pollution, πŸ’”Road danger. 
(Another borough broadcasting their desire to roll out e-scooters)

No word about any feasibilitystudy undertaken to tackle the concerns of disabled residents in the area though... I suppose in a crusader for workers rights world, disabled people’s rights don’t matter ????


The scheme has been heralded by all the UK cycling groups as far away as Edinburgh.  


TAXI LEAKS EXTEA BIT:
More From Camden Councils Adam Harrison:

Exciting news in our Safe Travel in Camden programme: 
The first of our pop-up cycle lanes has received the go-ahead. 

These will be on Goods Way in King’s Cross. We’ll make existing lanes ‘mandatory’, widen them, and add new ones. 


When Adam says “we’ll make existing lanes MANDATORY” does that mean cyclist will have to by law use only the cycle lanes and not other road space???
Good luck on policing that one Adam...

80th Anniversary Of The Evacuation Of Dunkirk Celebrations Cancelled Due To COVID19 Restrictions


 WWII veterans Jeff Haward, Ray Whitwell and Eric Taylor (pictured above) were in France in late May and early June 1940 with the British Expeditionary Force when more than 300,000 allied soldiers were evacuated from the beaches and harbour of Dunkirk in an operation codenamed Dynamo.

Jeff Haward, 100, who lives near Rochester, in Kent, fought from Dunkirk in 1940 to D Day in 1944 with the 1/7th Middlesex Regiment and was awarded the Military Medal for bravery in battle. 

Following evacuation from Dunkirk, the 1/7th, carried out coastal defence duties in preparation for the German invasion. 

Raymond Whitwell, 101, who lives in Malton, North Yorkshire, served with the Royal Army Service Corps, he was evacuated at Dunkirk and four years later flew into the Netherlands as part of Operation Market Garden in September 1944.

Eric Taylor, who celebrates his 100th birthday in June, lives in Cornwall. Eric was in the 7th Batt Royal Norfolk Regiment, who were part of the 51st Highland Division. 

Unable to make their way to Dunkirk in time to be evacuated they remained in France and made for Le Harve. They were cut off by the Germans and the division surrendered at St Valery-en-Caux on the 12th June.

Dick Goodwin, Vice President, Taxi Charity for Military Veterans said, “Centenarian’s Jeff, Ray and Eric are fabulous examples of the bravery shown by our armed forces during the Second World War. 

Usually they would be joining the Taxi Charity on trips to the continent to pay their respects to their comrades that didn’t come home, but sadly this year all our planned visits for the veterans are cancelled due to COVID-19 restrictions. ”

To find out more about The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans please visit www.taxicharity.org.uk

About Dunkirk
This year is the 80th anniversary of Dunkirk, code-named Operation Dynamo, during WWII, when more than 300,000 Allied soldiers were evacuated from the beaches and harbour of Dunkirk, in France, between May 26th and June 4th, 1940. 

The operation commenced after large numbers of Belgian, British, and French troops were cut off and surrounded by German troops during the six-week Battle of France.

About the Taxi Charity
The Taxi Charity for Military Veterans was formed in Fulham in 1948, to work for the benefit, comfort and enjoyment of military veterans and arranges many trips every year for veterans from all conflicts.

The charity offers international trips to The Netherlands, Belgium and France, UK day trips to concerts or museums, transport to attend fundraising events, as well as special days out to catch up with friends and comrades.

To fund and facilitate these outings, the charity is wholly reliant on generous donations from members of the public, businesses and trusts and the amazing group of London licensed taxi drivers who offer their time and vehicles free.

For more information, to arrange interviews with the Taxi Charity and Veterans or to request images please contact
Christina Bowden
Bowden PR

United Cabbies Group (UCG) Statement On Fixed Prices, After Steve McNamara’s Letter To Heidi Alexander


Yesterday, after the LTDA published Steve McNamara’s letter to deputy Mayor for transport Heidi Alexander, drivers were up in arms on social media, moaning saying they were going to cancel their membership. 

The UCG put out these Statement on  it’s Twitter account: 

The UCG will not enter into bargaining our right to ply for hire on London's streets. 

We are publicly hired and compelled to accept any hiring with a 100% wheelchair accessible fleet providing a fully inclusive transport service for all passengers. 

We fully support the metered fare, regulated by TFL and therefore refute any attempt to impose fixed fares upon our trade in exchange for continued access to our working environment. 

The UCG is calling on all London taxi organisations to come together, to protect our working environment in light of these unworkable restrictions placed upon our great trade.  We understand the need for social distancing but the licensed taxi is the safest form of transport

Also United Trade Action Group posted on Twitter:
After conference calls with UTAG steering committee yesterday we can assure members that we are ready to take up this vital fight 
These closures are  far more of a threat to our trade than Uber.

UTAG is not furloughed 

Thanks for all your support

Wednesday, May 20, 2020

London Taxi PR launches ‘Safe Partitioned Passenger Travel’ awareness campaign


With the current Government guidelines declaring that everyone using any form of public transportation service should observe safe distancing whilst Covid-19 is still prevalent, and ensure that they travel as safely as possible, London Taxi PR (LTPR), an organisation which represents the interests of the Licensed London Taxi profession, has announced the launch of a new ‘Safe Passenger Travel’ awareness campaign, which will be displayed on both sides of hundreds of Black Taxis.

The campaign, which was planned, designed, agreed, and sent to the printers within a 48-hour time frame, came to fruition once the Government had decreed that they wanted to get those who were unable to work from home back to work.


Working in conjunction with Colts Cabs, one of London’s leading garages & suppliers of London Taxis for rent, who had kindly agreed to donate free of charge the side-panel advertising spaces on a significant number of its rental Black Cab fleet, it was felt the message needed, had to convey the safety aspect of travel in a London Taxi, particularly highlighting the safe partitioning between the driver & passenger compartments, which is installed as part of the Black Cab’s manufacturing process and has been paramount throughout its history.

Another feature was the sanitised interiors, with all Taxis undergoing the sanitisation process before and after each passenger’s journey, and importantly the contactless payments, with all London Taxi’s fitted with credit card payment readers, so again, no need to handle any cash.


The message has also been colour-coded, so will sit on an eye-catching yellow background with black lettering. Red arrows will signify the distance between passenger and driver together with shaded lower bodies of both, the safe partitioned travel, sanitised interiors and contactless payment wording all in black.

A Red dividing line will also emphasis the position of the partition and the Save Lives message is in Blue. This will be the same for both sides of the vehicles.

The side-panels advertising messages will initially be fitted to the TX4 & TXe electric models of Taxi, but the intention then is for it to be also made available for other models such as Vito.

Since announcing the intention to deliver the campaign the interest has been significant, not only from other licensed Black Taxi rental companies, but also Taxi drivers up and down the length and breadth of the country, and the hope is that the message can be spread across the UK to encourage commuters and the travelling public to utilise the beneficial & significant passenger safety advantages that a licensed London Taxi provides.


What is more, ALL licensed London Taxis are 100% fully wheelchair accessible, another advantage for those who have or suffer with any disabilities and are particularly anxious about their safety and wary of coming into contact with other members of the public who are travelling. And of course, ALL are fitted with card readers, so no need for the handling or dealing with cash by passenger or drivers.

The campaign further emphasises the safety and trusted reputation of the licensed Taxi service, which London Taxi PR felt needed to be particularly underlined at this particular time of when people are more likely to be anxious about using public transportation to travel for work, business or for medical reasons at all times of the day and night.


The London Taxi service has been providing Londoners with a safe, reliable, and trusted public transportation service for the past 365 years and continues to be renowned at the world’s No.1 Taxi service.

Since their formation, London Taxi PR has undertaken a series of targeted media campaigns, which are being used to promote the benefits, advantages, and safety of using the iconic London Taxi to a wide audience.

All the campaigns and publicity that has so far been generated by London Taxi PR has been funded by fellow London Taxi drivers as well as supportive companies and organisations.


Islington XR Activist Paint Their Own Cycle Lanes On Islington Roads


Islington XR activist used stencils to paint a new cycle lane outside Islington Town Hall in Upper Street.

Islington XR is calling on the council and TfL to urgently make the streets safer for cyclists and pedestrians, as more cars return to the roads due to the lockdown being gradually eased.


Rebels painted cycle lanes in Upper Street, Blackstock Road and Liverpool Road to show there are “quick, affordable solutions” to improving road safety.

Scores of adults and children also took part in a socially distanced bike ride through the streets of the borough, calling for safer roads and cleaner air.

In an open letter to the council and TfL, Islington XR said: “If Islington Council is serious about it’s own declaration of climate emergency and pledge to achieve a net carbon borough it must take this opportunity now on increasing space for safe walking and cycling.”

Strangely enough, most of the protesters in Hyde Park at the week end, protesting against a lock down and social distancing appeared to be members of Extinction Rebellion. 



Police officer of the year, known as ‘Taxi Cop’, sacked for sending explicit photo to woman


PC Dave Humpherson committed gross misconduct and was dismissed from West Midlands Police

A motorbike cop has been dismissed from the police for gross misconduct after he sent an explicit photo to a woman while on duty.

Award-winning PC Dave Humpherson, from West Midlands Police, met "Miss A" at a petrol station just hours after matching on dating app Bumble.

The 41-year-old - voted police officer of the year in 2019 - was in uniform and on duty when he got into her car at a Shell garage on the A491 in Bell End, near Clent, on September 2, 2019.

The purpose of the meeting was to "explore the possibility of having a sexual relationship", a virtual hearing at Lloyd House in Birmingham was told.

PC Humpherson, who served 22 years with the force and worked to stop taxi drivers operating illegally, later sent her an explicit photo on WhatsApp the same day, the hearing was told.

West Midlands Police Chief Constable Dave Thompson, who presided over the misconduct hearing, said the actions were “reckless and unwise.”

He found the officer had breached standards for discreditable conduct, duties and responsibilities. It amounted to gross misconduct and the officer was dismissed without notice.

PC Humpherson's barrister had argued the PC was “encouraged” into a sexualised conversation by Miss A.

Miss A sent the PC pictures of herself after striking up a flirty chat, the hearing was told.

"He believed this to be a private conversation with someone who was also professional," his barrister Bo-Eun Jung said.

"He accepts he was on duty when the picture was sent. It did not stop him carrying out his duties and responsibilities.

"He has made open admissions and has shown genuine remorse."

She said the hardworking officer would normally start work an hour early. The meeting happened on his way to work for a 5pm to 3am shift and the intimate image was sent by PC Humpherson at 6.27pm. 

Ms Jung said her client was able to carry out his duties at work, which involved admin and emails.

Ms Jung added: “He has been comprehensive, consistent and honest. 

“He apologises wholeheartedly. He is an exceptional and valued police officer, which up to this date the Force has been greatly proud of.”

The woman did not make a formal complaint, but had made an inquiry with Professional Standards.

Ms Jung also said the officer had also received the West Midlands Police Diamond Award in 2015.

The Chief Constable said the relationship between the taxi enforcement officer and Miss A had moved at “great pace.” 

“When on duty you went to meet Miss A to advance a sexual relationship,” he said.

He said PC Humpherson sending the intimate picture was a "moment of recklessness in his career."

He conceded the incident was a single episode and the officer had shown remorse. However, he found the officer committed gross misconduct from a "very serious case."

The officer was not at Lloyd House, but watched proceedings in a video call with a Police Federation representative.

Speaking after the hearing, Chief Superintendent Stephen Graham, commander at Birmingham West, said: “Humpherson’s behaviour was completely unacceptable and a clear breach of our standards of professional behaviour.

“Serving and protecting the public is paramount and it is vital that our communities have trust and confidence in everything that we do.

“Any officer or staff member that fails to uphold our force values and falls below the high standards we expect will be dealt with accordingly."

Source: https://www.birminghammail.co.uk/news/midlands-news/police-officer-year-sacked-sending-18272619

RICHARD LITTLEJOHN Says: Genghis Khan Lays Waste To London As He Declares War On Mobility


“London’s Open”. How many times did we hear the city's two-bob chancer of a mayor Sadiq Khan parrot that trite slogan in the wake of the Brexit referendum? 

He even lit up the London Eye in the colours of the EU flag to proclaim that despite the Leave vote, the city welcomes all-comers and was still a great place to do business. No one had ever suggested otherwise. 

Until now. Khan has just decided to do to London's economy what his namesake Genghis did to Asia and China in the early 13th century. 

He's laying it to waste. On the day the Government urged as many people as possible to return to work this week, Khan declared war on mobility. 

Unveiling an insane policy which could do more long-term financial damage than coronavirus, he imposed a crippling 30 per cent increase in the congestion charge to £15 a day.

With restaurants and theatres on their knees and facing an uncertain future, even when lockdown is lifted, he also extended the hours from 7am-6pm to 10pm and, for the first time, to Saturday and Sunday. 

Drive into town for a pre-theatre supper and a show? 
Have you got money to burn? 

Bang goes the West End. Fancy a little light shopping in Oxford Street at the weekend, or a leisurely Sunday brunch in Covent Garden? 

Forget it, unless you are prepared to take your life in your hands on the Underground. 

With Tube, bus and train capacity still well below normal and people being advised to avoid public transport wherever possible, it's crazy punishing them for using their cars. 
Especially when the safest way to travel right now is in your own vehicle. 

The congestion charge comes on top of an ultra-low emissions zone levy (ULEZ) of £12.50. 
So if you own an older car, which doesn't meet the latest emissions standards, it will cost £27.50 a day to drive to work. 

TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT :

Maida Vale-based London Assembly member Murad Qureshi criticises government’s TfL bailout saying 
It’s A Kick In The Teeth’: 


The government’s bailout of TfL will “hit the capital’s poorest the hardest”, says London Assembly member Murad Qureshi.

The Maida Vale-based politician’s comments follow Whitehall agreeing a £1.6 billion deal last week with TfL which is facing a 90 per cent fall in income from Covid-19 lockdown.

The Londonwide Labour representative said fare rises and changes to the Freedom Pass were a “gratuitous kick in the teeth” as part of a “punitive and “damaging” deal.

Mr Qureshi said: “This will hit some of the poorest in our capital the hardest.

“It is also nonsensical that Londoners have been effectively singled out and punished in this way, after doing the right thing and staying at home and away from public transport to contain the virus.

“The Government needs to own up to the fact that where they could have helped TfL back on track to recovery, they have inflicted unnecessary pain and uncertainty.

“They must go back to the drawing board and reconsider this decision”.


Under the terms of the bailout, congestion charge will rise by 30%, free travel for children will be temporarily halted and over-60s will have to pay to travel during peak times. Mayor of London Sadiq Khan said the bailout “wasn’t the deal he wanted”.

Monday, May 18, 2020

Westminster Council Is Telling Residents That Poor Air Quality Helped Spread COVID19.‬

Now Westminster City Council has decided to “be more ambitious in its commitments to reduce air pollution”. One of its first targets is to reduce pollution from Black Cabs. 

Reports put before the council’s cabinet on Monday 11 May have now been approved, paving the way for the council to draw up an ‘Air Quality Action Plan’.

The Council’s Action Plan set out five themes: 
  • air quality monitoring
  • reducing emissions from buildings and new development
  • reducing emissions from transport
  • raising awareness of the effects of air pollution
  •  lobbying and partnership working for greater action to reduce air pollution.

Transport is the single biggest cause of air pollution in the city. 

Much of the action plan is about “encouraging” a move away from private car use but there was little in the way of “enabling” people to make healthy lifestyle changes. 

The plan does touch on the thorny issue of residents parking but it doesn’t shy away from the limitations of electric vehicles in improving air quality.

The plan noted that while a shift to electric vehicles will result in “huge reductions in NOx emissions” due to there being no tailpipe emissions, particulate emissions won’t decrease as much because tyre and brake wear are strong components of road transport particulate matter (PM10).

“This emphasises the need to not view electric vehicles as a ‘silver bullet’ for air quality; rather, electric vehicles need to be encouraged as part of a wider road user hierarchy that in the first instance prioritises modal shift away from private vehicle use to walking, cycling and public transport use,” states the draft plan.

The public consultation on the plan received 629 responses mostly from individual residents.

The most popular priority actions were related to the council’s partnership working with businesses, lobbying the Mayor of London for greater action on reducing emissions from black cab taxis, and the council leading by example through its own fleet and procurement,” stated the report.

“The least popular priority actions were investigating changes to the use of parking bays, investigating changes to parking permit structures, and action on non-road sources of transport emissions.” 

The comments about parking are unsurprising since 62 percent of the respondents are holders of resident parking permits, yet the vast majority of households in Westminster do not have access to a car or van.

However, since the closure of the public consultation, the Covid-19 pandemic and the lockdown has “clearly changed the circumstances under which Westminster’s new Air Quality Action Plan will operate”, states the report.

“During the lockdown period, pollution levels across the city have dropped dramatically. 

Compared to similar time periods in 2019, Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) emissions have reduced by more than 50 percent at the council’s monitoring sites on Oxford Street and Buckingham Palace Road, which reductions of between 40 and 50 percent at all other sites in the city. This is due to the high reduction in road transport in central London, as well as reduced emissions from commercial buildings, and potential impact of reduced aviation traffic,” states the report.

The cabinet papers also draw attention to a correlation between air pollution and the spread of Covid-19.

“There is also a great deal of emerging data concerning the potential relationship between exposure to high pollution levels and the spread of COVID-19, the onset of the disease (i.e. how likely people are the contract the disease), and the severity of it once contracted. 

A study published on April 20th suggests that there is a clear correlation between levels of air pollution and deaths from Covid-19 in England. 

This has not yet been peer reviewed and the data sets show only a correlation rather than a direct causal link,” said the report.

Because of the current crisis the Air Quality Action Plan as it stands would not reflect the reality of a post-lockdown Westminster in the short or longer term.

“By considering what new opportunities there may be for innovative policies and projects across the city, it is envisaged that a refreshed Action Plan will be more ambitious in its commitments to reduce air pollution in Westminster,” said the report.

But Westminster councillors are likely to have the events of 2012 in the back of their minds when they were unfairly criticised by business groups and opposition parties to their plans to end free car parking and which led to the leader of the council resigning.

Today’s problem for Westminster council is the New West End Company
For on the same day as Westminster council committed itself to improving air quality the largest business group in the city were calling for the continued suspension of congestion charge, discounted car parking rates, and more space for car parking as part of its plan for recovery when lockdown is eased.

TAXI LEAKS EXTRA BIT: 
Again the trade is to come under attack from Westminster Council’s cabinet, who will be using the pandemic to push through its agenda. 

Unsurprisingly their biased report fails to mention pollution from Buses, or the London Underground exhaust fume ventilation shafts situated through out the borough. 

TfL Underground Ventilation Shaft In Warwick Avenue. Just one of many situated in the Borough of Westminster

To the council’s cabinet, the London Taxi Trade appear to be an easy target, mainly because of its apparent weak representation.