Friday Sep 21, 2007

Rich Cyclists

From todays Times:

The richest fifth of the population cycle on average 2½ times as far in a year as the poorest fifth.


Studies have shown that regular cyclists typically enjoy a level of fitness equivalent to someone 10 years younger, and those cycling regularly beyond their mid-thirties add two years to their life expectancy.

Now which comes first, the being rich or the cycling?

Saturday May 19, 2007

Highway Code in the Telegraph

The growing publicity around the disgraceful update to the Highway code hits the Daily Telegraph today (I was forwarded this, I have not suddenly started reading the Torygraph).

Given Robin's dissection of the inability of our elected members to understand their own legislation I should not be surprised that the Department for transport can't see a significant difference between “wherever practicable” and “wherever possible”. Although by focusing on this they misrepresent the concerns of cyclists that even “wherever practicable” too prescriptive.

As I have said before I would prefer the Highway code to warn cyclists of the dangers of using Cycle paths both dedicated and shared use and make it clear they are not intended for cyclists doing more than 30km/h according to the DfT's own design specifications. Also warn cyclists about the feeder lanes into Advanced Stop Lines at traffic lights as they can put you on the inside of Lorries turning left, somewhere you never want to be.

Sunday May 06, 2007

The Times reports the issues of the new Highway Code

The problems with the Highway Code for cyclists has hit the main stream media. From The Times online. This quote from a nameless official at the Department for Transport shows the problem:

The Highway Code has advised cyclists to use cycle facilities like cycle tracks since 1946,”

The concept that the advice it is giving and has been giving for 60 years might be bad advice never enters the conversation. The quotes from John Franklin, the author of cyclecraft, are to frightening if he is right:

Franklin also points out that rules controlling cyclists’ safety are in the hands of the Driving Standards Agency (which publishes the Highway Code) and the DfT. “As far as I know there is no one at the DfT’s road safety section who has any experience of cycling,” he says.

It is however completely believable that no one at the DfT or the Driving Standards Agency knows anything about cycling.

Similar to the folks at work who look after the campus. What they know about cycling can be found on their nonexistent blog yet they tell us that the suicide cycle paths are safe and have had a “professional” do a risk assessment to show this, a risk assessment they refuse to share with the cyclists. Sorry I was starting to rant.....

Tuesday Dec 05, 2006

Media coverage

I 'm always surprised when a national paper prints a positive article about cycling. Today we have one actually acknowledging what most cyclists know about cycle lanes and cycle paths, they are more dangerous than being on the road. Well worth a read.

What is more it was in the motoring section.

I dream of a newspaper having a cycling section.


Wednesday Jun 07, 2006

Cycling in the press

It seems the Independent is running some articles on cycling today.

This one made me laugh out load for this quote:

Yesterday, Mr Havers was in no mood to signal a thaw in relations. Speaking from his car on a mobile phone, he said: "I absolutely hate cyclists. If they use the roads for free and they don't have to pay any tax, they must obey the rules”

The ignorance. Last time I checked I paid a lot of tax. Then the irony of Mr Havers speaking from his car on a mobile phone. I do hope he was not driving. Don't start me on the 90% on drivers who admit to speeding or comparing the numbers killed by motorists and cyclists. Even with Red light jumping, something I don't condone, cyclists are simply not the problem.

The articles I have found are:

How Nigel Havers incurred wrath of bicycling readers

Revolution! Britain embraces the bicycle

Via Alec


Saturday May 21, 2005

Fishnets and cycling

There was a reasonable positive article about cycling in the Guardian supplement today. However it did have one very scary point:

People who cycle a lot tell you to expect one nasty accident a year. That's quite a lot, if you think about it ...

Hell that terrifies me. That either means that I don't cycle a lot, which means there are lots of people who I have not met that are cycling more then 6,000 miles a year and therefore I don't cycle a lot or I am in line for about 30 nasty accidents.

There may of course be another answer. People perceive cycling as much more dangerous than it actually is. It is in fact safer than walking, strange but true and that does not take in the health benefits due to improved fitness of cycling.

If you are one of those cyclists who has “one nasty accident a year” I would strongly suggest you read Cyclecraft, actually even if you are not it's a good read.

Anyway apart from that scare the article was quite refreshing as it gave a positive view of cycling in a national paper. I'm not so sure about the fishnets though (for money I will cycle to work in them though, but it has to be a lot of money, for Oxfam).



This is the old blog of Chris Gerhard. It has mostly moved to


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