The Great Big Pedalling Protest Blog roundup

OK, I thought I knew what the big story was going to be this week, with the Embassy's own Jim Davis reminding us to get out from behind our screens for Saturday's joint protests in London and Edinburgh. London Cycling Campaign had launched their Big Ride Video and, not to be outdone, so had Pedal on Parliament. Londoners on Bikes was busy doing my job for me with their weekly round up and Kennington People on Bikeswas urging people to sign the London petition. As the Scots forged onwards with letter writing campaigns, support from Sir Chris Hoy and the original Flying Scotsman, Graeme Obree - not to mention from bloggers, campaigns and cycle chicstas across Scotland, something a little different was happening down in that London...

It started with a little story about minicabs in bus lanes (which wouldn't be an issue for us cyclists if we had lanes of our own...). Croydon Cyclist looked at the legal position and Cyclists in the city responded and it all looked as if it might blow over when someone forwarded Danny a copy of Addison-Lee's chairman's by now infamous column and, despite suggestions that there's no such thing as bad publicity what we are now legally obliged to call a PR omnishambles promptly ensued. Calls for a boycott came thick and fast while cyclists soon found other ways to hit back. With the lawyers looking at the legal issues a mass 'die-in' for tomorrow was quickly planned - complete with skeleton. Scrambling to respond, Addison-Lee boss John Griffin first claimed to be serious cyclist, then that it was a deadly serious issue, and signed up to the Times cycle safety campaign, none of which is likely to save him from even Boris Johnson's condemnation. probably has the best round up of the whole thing - though outside the M25, Bristol Traffic is unimpressed.

Still, Londoners did find a little time for protesting with Climate Rush attempting to spring clean London before being stopped by health'n'safety - Vole o'speed, inhabitant of London's most polluted borough was there, while Bikes alive finds Mondays are getting busy. And - though it may have escaped you if you live outside London - the Mayoral election rumbles on, with Boris venturing onto Mumsnet and getting asked about cycling among other things. Wheels, Pedals, Person is flabbergasted by his response. A new e-book explores how Boris has failed London cyclists - something I suspect that won't be news to Kennington People on Bikes. Still, at least London is fortunate to be home to the new 'Bike Paradise' ...Richmond, where the station is being improved ... for cars.

Outside of London - where the national press may be astounded to learn there are also local elections going on - bucks are being passed in Suffolk. Further north, Lancaster Dynamo tries to get a little dialogue going with local councillors, while in Dumfries, Cycling Dumfries actually gets them on their bikes. Cycle hoops put in an appearance in Edinburgh, a new path opens in Bury and new money is announced for cycling and walking in Dundee. Somewhat less positively, in Toronto a deputy mayor just wishes all those cyclists would leave him alone.

Raising the question of whether a 'cotton candy hammer' is the new chocolate tea pot, some of these Bulgarian bike lanes might look mighty familiar to UK cyclists while, sick of planners not asking advice from those who actually ride bikes, some Muscovites paint their own bike route. Even the Dutch aren't immune, with protests about a bike track losing priority and a nice reminder from one cyclist to those other cyclists who don't signal their turns. In Melbourne, city planners consider Copenhagen-style bike lanes (or just paint in the road) while bikes come to Motown (perhaps they want more cyclists). In New York, beginner cyclists get their own space among the maelstrom of New York bike traffic. We're filing that one under 'nice problem to have'.

Following on from the legalities of last week, As Easy As Riding a Bike looks at dangerous vs. careless driving while in a technical but excellent piece, UK Cycle Rules looks at cyclists' contributory negligence (it may be no wonder Kats Dekker feels discriminated against). As the Institution of Mechanical Engineers calls for blind spot sensors to be made compulsory on HGVs, there are European moves to improve bike provision on trains, Canadian calls for legislation for bike infrastructure and Japanese ones for bike licences to solve parking problems.

Looking at road design, As Easy As Riding a Bike asks whether a pedestrian guard rail is there to protect pedestrians from cars ... or just cars from pedestrians while, along the same lines, Help My Chain Came Off wonders if traffic islands are for controlling speed or endangering cyclists - something which became all too real with road design blamed in vicar's death. Three people were arrested after the death of a cyclist in Aylesbury while the cyclist killed last week in Sussex was named as James Cramp. Darlogirl, fortunately, survived her latest near miss - although that didn't stop her imagining the impact on her family. And Brown Girl in the Lane is hit by the sadness that gets us all eventually when we read about cyclists being killed. Fortunately the Institute of Advanced Motorists is on to the case with the whole SMIDSY problem, and concludes by advising (presumably advanced) cyclists how to avoid it (no word on the advice to their advanced motorists) while across the water, a cyclist crash test dummy might make cyclists safer.

With such danger on the road, no wonder our 'cycling revolutions' seem to be continually still born - while the past, truly another country, one a bit like the Netherlands (although with some familiar features). Perhaps a cycling revolution could be an economic one too, as Man's Greatest mistake finds an interesting correlation. Will things change with the end of cheap oil? Some things are already changing, with the car signalling less freedom as a giant ball and chain. Sam Saunders would have to agree.

Still anyone doubting that cycling is inching into the mainstream might be wise to visit Harrods - just make sure that your chic ensemble doesn't get ruined by a bloody great bus.

If you've ever wondered where you are on the beginner biker scale Bikeyface is here to help. And, finally, if you were never sure where the cockles of your heart were, read this and identify them from the warm glow...