Cycling's image not helped by Boris

4 Sep 2007 by Karl Hallam

Boris Johnson's Mayoral candidacy should be good news for utility cycling, something Cadence support through our work and personal habits. Here's a man who rides in London in his suit ... surely no better advert for the bike as the best of way of getting around the City. But, there is a hitch, becuase Boris' eccentricity lets people off the hook. Of course Boris cycles - he's mad! In fact everything about Boris' cycling habits make cycling seem a bad idea. He's had his bike pinched 7 times - well that is bad luck, but could it be something to do with how he secures it? He goes through red lights - will this make the Daily Mail unsupportive of his candidature? His appearance is shambolic - is that why Cameron's bike use is minimal because you can't be smart and ride?

Cycling in the UK is a long way from being commonplace and having Boris Johnson as the cycling world's pin up will not help change this. The CTC have been a little guilty of embracing Boris, but their DEFRA funded cycle hero film about climate change presents a better image. cadence's view is that getting safe places for kids to get on their bikes is surely the long term answer.



your comments

Posts: 3
Reply #3 on : Wed February 20, 2008, 11:48:09
<a href="">mjsylcqk</a> [URL=]aemhogib[/URL] ldjkpmvk wcziskfi guqgvghf
Posts: 3
Who is this sandal wearing, Guardian reading, brown rice eating, cyclo-terrorist?
Reply #2 on : Tue September 11, 2007, 15:42:09
Get them off the road and out of my way. Who allows this redundant piece of technology on the roads anyway. Let them back on once they've grown up and become real racers who like their cars fast and drink their wine slow.
Simon Bishop
Posts: 3
Boris on a bike
Reply #1 on : Tue September 04, 2007, 10:44:55
I listen to my work colleagues complaining about their journey to work travails as the Metronet tube strike deepens and wonder why more people don't cycle as a matter of course. Go to a city like Berlin and you'll see grandfathers, mothers, commuters, children cycling along without a care, unhelmeted and un-lycrared.

I long for the day when the UK will follow. I'll be a human being again when I'm pootling around town on my bike. Now I'm 'a keen cyclist'. This indicates the difficulty, part fact part fiction, associated with cycling in the UK today. You have to be 'Lycrad', be an reckless obsessive or a friend of Boris to climb on a bike. OK, you've rumbled me.

We desperately need to mainstream cycling as a mode of transport. A few suggestions to get the wheel rolling? Change the law. Make drivers responsible for "accidents" (collisions would be a better word) with the onus on them to prove otherwise. Four cyclists killed in Wales, the driver with bald tyres going too fast in icy conditions receiving a £40 fine for each death is not a good start. The judge blames the Council for failing to grit properly.

Next give pedestrians priority at junctions. You'll be surprised at how this improves relationships between drivers and other road users as they communicate eye to eye.

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