Shake-up of no-cycling bylaws - govt to make it easier for councils to abolish them

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PaulM
Shake-up of no-cycling bylaws - govt to make it easier for councils to abolish them

See here: http://road.cc/content/news/36449-new-government-rules-make-it-easier-co...
and here: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/8544782/Cycling-to-become-easier-under-b...

The Telegraph article doesn’t have a comments section so we can’t see what the average shire tory thinks of the idea. But note the Telegraph’s “related articles” – “Lycra louts face curbs” (June 2002) and “Lycra louts to be fined” (Dec 2009).

Summary – Grant Shapps, local govt minister, wants to make it easier for councils to abolish bylaws which prohibit cycling on eg promenades and in parks. Motivation is to encourage more people to cycle by offering them off-road alternatives. There are of course references to potential for tension between cyclists and pedestrians sharing space – shared use and “shared understanding”.

Note also Brake has said something useful for once. See here: http://www.brake.org.uk/safer-routes-to-get-us-cycling
It may be a statement of the bleedin’ obvious to you, but good to see a respected road safety charity publish some useful research findings on traffic-free cycling as an incentive to greater take-up, rather than the usual blame-the-victim stuff about helmets and high-vis.

Dr C.
Dr C.'s picture

I must admit that personally I lose a lot of respect for brake when they come out with gems like this:

“Brake also advocates regulation for compulsory cycle helmet wearing as international evidence from New Zealand shows that it can increase the rate of cycle helmet wearing and reduces the rate of head injuries both off and on-road.”

As it shows a lack of understanding of the wider issues of helmets, victim blaming, and the suppression of cycling through helmet compulsion, as well as a lack of understanding about research and cherry-picking; one study from New Zealand versus a wider consensus saying the opposite is hardly inspiring stuff for an organisation I’d like to have hoped would pursue policies based on evidence rather than evidence based on policy.

markbikeslondon

I’m not a huge fan of Brake’s policy position either (I think Road Peace do a much better job) at addressing road danger reduction, instead of ‘road safety’, however the link that Paul supplied about safer routes being key to getting more cycling is good stuff and grist to the mill. and indeed they do do some good work and I’m not sure we can afford to be too picky when looking for potential partners for future support for our plans (short of being sponsored by an F1 racing team!!)

I welcome the relaxing of the by laws as it used to be that local by laws had to be over ridden at Westminster level, which is why it takes forever and a day to implement things like cycling along Hove sea front.

I also think it goes to show that now, more than ever, the need for national standards on cycle path design is very urgent indeed. Otherwise we might well end up with an awful lot more ‘crap cycle lanes’.

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