Newsnight ran a report last night on improving safety for cyclists and pedestrians by getting rid of traffic lights and other street furniture. You can see it again - about 30 minutes in.
The campaign against lights is championed by Martin Cassini, and built on the shared space ideas of Hans Monderman, who died recently.
A case study is shown in the Swedish town of Skvallertorget. It probably only works because there are so few cars: pedestrians and cyclists take priority. Maybe it could work here in London with a more draconian congestion charge.