But don’t you need get more people cycling first before you can press for better facilities? At the moment, cycling is such a minority activity no politician would dare champion it.

There is a seductive line of reasoning that suggests we can ‘bootstrap’ a cycling culture cheaply through training, exhortation, "Sky rides" and modest bike hire schemes, slowly building cycling rates until everybody is a cyclist and politicians are willing to invest in infrastructure at Dutch levels of spending.

Unfortunately, even if we could afford to wait that long, there’s no evidence that this approach will work. Cycling rates are still meagre in this country despite years of the above while targets – such as the 1996 National Cycling Strategy’s target to quadruple cycling by 2012 – have been set and then quietly dropped when they’ve been found to be unachievable.22

Nor is there any sign that increased cycling levels will make politicians more willing to listen to cyclists’ concerns – there are more bikes than cars crossing Blackfriars Bridge in London during the rush hour, yet initial proposals for redesigning the bridge included removing one cycle lane and increasing the speed limit to 30 mph.23

We need to reach out now to the much bigger section of the population who would like to cycle if they felt they could. And we need to see real leadership from politicians to see beyond the noisy motoring lobbies and make far-sighted changes that will bring benefits not to the 3% of the UK population who currently cycle regularly, but to everyone.