Who we are

Transport Initiatives has five members based across England. We all have detailed knowledge of our local region, but are able to work anywhere in the UK, and beyond.

Ken Spence

Ken has nearly 30 years professional experience of working on road safety and active travel, and specifically on cycle training. He was a key architect of the National Standard for Cycle Training (Bikeability), including managing consultation and preparation of nationally available written guidance. For Transport Initiatives Ken has been involved in a range of cycling and sustainable transport projects. Based on his cycle training experience he led the development of TI’s CSNA process as a way of matching cycle training skills to the actual road environment. Ken has worked on many cycle studies including Croydon BYPAD, school cycle partnerships studies, cycle parking and quiet route audits. Lambeth cycle network study. Ealing cycle signage audit. At ERCDT (predecessor to Cycling England) Ken produced key guidance for an audit and benchmark of England’s 149 highway authorities. He also moderated and edited the majority of the final reports and has considerable experience of setting up and implementing reliable audit processes.

Mark Strong

Mark has over 30 years continuous professional experience of working on sustainable transport and cycling. He has worked for Transport Initiatives on a wide range of projects for local authorities, government and private sector clients. Mark has carried out extensive area-wide work on cycle audits, cycle safety and design. In 2017 he carried out a major review of cycling in Lambeth. In 2015 he managed the first council-wide application of the LCDS cycle network planning methodology, for Southwark. Mark has extensive experience of work on bike share, leading on studies for Brighton, Greater Manchester, Derby and most recently Watford. He is currently working with Stevenage and Harlow Councils on feasibility studies. Mark represented CIHT on the steering group for the DfT’s new national Cycle Design Guidance (LTN 1/20), published in July 2020. He previously formed part of the team led by Urban Movement which carried out the International Cycling Best Practice Study for TfL in 2013. Before joining TI Mark was English Regions Cycling Development Team (ERCDT) Coordinator for the South East, carrying out assessments of local authority progress on cycling. Previously Mark was the South East Area Manager for Sustrans for 11 years and carried out a wide range of cycling studies for local authority and other clients.

Rob Marshall

Rob has a post graduate diploma in Town Planning and qualified as a Chartered Town Planner, though his specialism is Highways and Transport Planning. He has worked extensively in local authority land, with a long stint at Norfolk County Council where his last post was Senior Engineer (Traffic Strategies). He has considerable experience in providing for pedestrians and cyclists and looking at how the impact of traffic speeds can be reduced and the effect of vehicles can be lessened in sensitive areas. Projects included: Norfolk Quiet Lanes Pilot Studies (working with DfT and Countryside Agency); Norfolk AONB Coastal Villages initiative (looking at seasonal tourist traffic and parking issues); Norfolk Market Towns Traffic Studies. Rob was project manager for both the Quiet Lanes and the Market Towns projects and formed half of the two-man ‘Norfolk Traffic Calming Team’ which looked at innovative ways of accommodating vehicles and mitigating the negative effects in rural communities and sensitive places, including ‘tourist hot spots’ in The Broads and the North Norfolk Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and in rural communities. The team pioneered the early use of interactive Variable Message Signs and developed ‘Psychological Traffic Calming’ as alternatives to over-engineered, often unsightly and inappropriate interventions. Rob has carried out a wide range of studies since joining Transport Initiatives (after several years with Cycling England and the English Regions Cycling Development Team). A significant piece of T.I. work was a study investigating links between Thetford and the nearby Thetford Forest by non-car means as part of the Healthy Towns initiative and a comprehensive walking/cycling strategy for Bedford and its environs. Rob is a keen gardener and plantsman and opens his town garden in Peterborough for the National Garden Scheme, for whom he is the Deputy County Organiser. He lives in Peterborough with his partner and their four British Shorthair cats.

Steve Essex

Steve is a planner with an MSc in Traffic Engineering & Planning. He has 30 years of broad transport experience ranging from trams to footpaths, from big cities to isolated villages and from strategic visions to stomping around in the mud with bits of yellow machinery. He spent a lengthy period with Manchester City Council where he worked on schemes including the City Centre Parking Zone, Metrolink and the M60. He introduced the Safer Ways to Schools concept to the city and constructed the Fallowfield Loopline Railwaypath. With TI his main interest is clearly sustainable transport, particularly cycling, but he is able to use his wider experience to solve problems in a more holistic way. Recently in the Brecon Beacons he found that the problems of excess visitor parking pressure could be solved not only by providing more parking but also by managing the existing parking in different ways, providing improved footpath information, and empowering the residents. Steve enjoys new problems and innovation. He was involved in the early days of tactile markings, advanced stop lines and contra-flow cycle schemes. Some of Steve’s work has been published as best practice by the Department of Transport and he has contributed to design guidance, most recently to the Rail Delivery Group’s Cycle Rail Guide. Steve enjoys innovation and is currently undertaking research with Heriot Watt University in how pedestrians, cyclists, joggers and others interact on off-highway paths.

Toby Jacobs

Toby has worked in the field of transport for the last 13 years. He has always been interested in sustainability issues relating to transport and decided to make it his full-time work in 2006, following a 20+ year career in the media. Beginning in road safety, he became one of the leading cycling instructors in four London boroughs. There followed a 3-year position at Westminster City Council as their Sustainable Transport Officer. During this time, Toby was responsible for the development and delivery of a range of sustainable transport programmes. These included, the Doctor Bike programme, strategic planning and delivery of the cycle parking programme, production of road safety short films and the installation of Westminster’s first secure bike hangar in 2016. He also produced an early draft of a West End freight strategy in connection with the proposed closure of Oxford Street. He contributed to Westminster’s Cycle Superhighway work, liaising with TfL for the borough. In 2017, Toby completed his MSc in Transport Planning and Management at Westminster University. He then took on the role of Senior Transport Planner for Sustainable Infrastructure at Hackney Council. His duties there included cycle route planning and design review, the UK’s largest secure cycle parking programme, spatial analysis and Electric Vehicle policy and implementation. He also produced the original background masterplan of Hackney’s Low Traffic Neighbourhoods. Toby brings a wide, real world experience to projects he is involved in.