Cycling is, without doubt, the most efficient way to move ourselves between places.
It is, nevertheless, incredibly dangerous and, much as it grieves me to say so, the risks involved in the activity are sufficient to deter any rational and informed person from participating in it, let alone encouraging their children to take it up.
That there is a pervading hostility towards cyclists is tragic. Many perfectly wonderful people see cyclists as an obstacle instead of seeing a cyclist as one less car.
The highway code forbids cycling three abreast whilst nobody comments that every car can seat three across, every bus can seat six; worse still those buses and cars can be empty and/or stationary and nobody gives a fig. In this newspaper We see letters whinging about cyclists with headphones while never realising that every car driver is relatively deaf to the world around.
At a local and national level we hear the stated preferences: to encourage sustainable transport. The revealed preferences are very different, with an inexorable bias towards increased car use and greater danger and delay to the cyclist and pedestrian, an ever growing dependency upon the car, while the people who permit, plan, build and maintain our transport system get fatter on the proceeds.
We have a local group, The Wakefield Cycle Forum, that actively censors measured, rational and informed criticism, while enjoying a cosy relationship with its ‘partner’ WMDC.
It’s like turkeys planning Christmas with Bernard Matthews.