Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

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RickH
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Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby RickH » 9 Aug 2019, 12:28am

I thought Chris Boardman's critique in the BBC coverage of, mainly, the Sportive was interesting - available here on iPlayer. Clare Balding's intro to Chris's piece starts at around 4:45 if you don't want to watch the whole thing.

pwa
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby pwa » 9 Aug 2019, 7:20am

Every bum on a saddle helps to make cycling more normal. It doesn't matter whether it is a whippet-like racer or a grey haired bloke on his way to work. A couple of days ago I was walking through our village and had to step off the tarmac and onto a grass verge to make way for a boy who had clearly just had his stabilisers taken off and was tentatively cycling along the lane with his mum jogging alongside. The look of concentration on his face! Everyone who takes up or resumes cycling is one more reason that cycling will survive and thrive in the future, and Ride London is one expression of the movement.

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby reohn2 » 9 Aug 2019, 9:10am

Whilst I agree with CB's sentiments and PWA's post above,until motorists are seriously taken to task across the board and with suitable stronger discouraging penalties,implementation of those penalties and their use curtailed drastically within cities and town boundaries,cycling will remain a fringe activity.
I firmly believe there are many,many people who would like to cycle,not just for pleasure as most people on this forum do,myself included,but for general short haul local transport,but see cycling facilities as poor in the extreme,motorists as agressive and the roads a daunting and dangerous prospect.
It takes a lot to prise someone from the comfort of their car and unless cycling is perceived as safe and more or at least as convenient,cycle use will remain static and at a fringe activity level,that said things are being done in the positive by CB and others like him but it's against a tide of a motoring centric society with most of government at national and local level paying only lip service to alternatives to the car,it's a slow drag of a change.
What was the question again?
Oh,yes will ride London help the cause of cycling?
To a certain extent yes,but that extent is seriously limited for the reasons given above
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hemo
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby hemo » 9 Aug 2019, 9:49am

Not locally in the areas of the Surrey Hill's where I regularly deliver to, over 90% of residents and motrons I speak to bemoan the event albeit that it is held on a Sunday the quietest day of the week.

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby mjr » 9 Aug 2019, 9:51am

People on cycling tours probably don't have easy access to iPlayer because of poor connections and access restrictions (both WiFi providers and BBC). What's he say? ;)
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby mjr » 9 Aug 2019, 9:53am

hemo wrote:Not locally in the areas of the Surrey Hill's where I regularly deliver to, over 90% of residents and motrons I speak to bemoan the event albeit that it is held on a Sunday the quietest day of the week.

Some of them won't be happy with anything less than a cyclist- hunting season, will they?
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mattheus
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby mattheus » 9 Aug 2019, 10:00am

pwa wrote:Every bum on a saddle helps to make cycling more normal.


Do people truly feel this is the case? In a "no news is bad news" way?

I'm not convinced ... there must be poor role-models/images that could actually harm the uptake of cycling, and make people think that perhaps cycling is for weirdos/nutters/selfish MAMILs/hipsters/etc.

"Eeewww - I don't want to look like THAT!" or "What a bunch of <rude words> - I'm glad I'm not like them!"

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby reohn2 » 9 Aug 2019, 10:28am

mattheus wrote:
pwa wrote:Every bum on a saddle helps to make cycling more normal.


Do people truly feel this is the case? In a "no news is bad news" way?

I'm not convinced ... there must be poor role-models/images that could actually harm the uptake of cycling, and make people think that perhaps cycling is for weirdos/nutters/selfish MAMILs/hipsters/etc.

"Eeewww - I don't want to look like THAT!" or "What a bunch of <rude words> - I'm glad I'm not like them!"


That's all because cycling in most of the UK is a hobby/enthusiasts activity and has been for many a year,until people do it as utility/normal activity and those people who use the bike don't see themselves as enthusiasts,but as normal people doing a normal thing,things won't change.
For that to happen in any numbers cycling has to be provided for by good infrastucture and without the perceived threat of being mowed down by motors.
The problem is motoring,in the sense that it's had it's own way for far too long to such an extent that cycling is a hated(not too stronger term IMO)by a growing number of motorists and grudgingly accepted by the majority,and IME the more traffic there is the worse it is.

Until the attitude of motorists toward vulnerable road users changes and motoring law is enforced and increased penalties implemented nothing will change for the better.
Meanwhile people in towns,cities and to a lesser extent the urban environment choke rather than walk or use a bike.
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby pwa » 9 Aug 2019, 10:41am

https://www.google.com/maps/@51.4699373 ... 6?hl=en-GB

I have been cycling this bit or road for a good few years. First around 1990, but a lot more frequently since I moved to my current home around 20 years ago. When I fist cycled it I was part of an endangered species with very few other cyclists on that road. Being treated as a nuisance by other road users, whilst not the norm, was not uncommon. But these days the number of cyclists on that road has increased greatly. Off the top of my head I would say quadrupled or more. Largely because that road is a prime route for cyclists in the urban area of Bridgend wanting to get into the great cycling country of the Vale (of Glamorgan). So you see a lot of lycra, but also less sporty folk riding their cheap bikes they got from Halfords. And the reaction of drivers finding a cyclist on the road has improved.

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby mattheus » 9 Aug 2019, 10:46am

pwa wrote:https://www.google.com/maps/@51.4699373,-3.5905902,3a,75y,90t/data=!3m6!1e1!3m4!1s247KqckHvFTxXc6uy3ZcEg!2e0!7i13312!8i6656?hl=en-GB

I have been cycling this bit or road for a good few years. First around 1990, but a lot more frequently since I moved to my current home around 20 years ago. When I fist cycled it I was part of an endangered species with very few other cyclists on that road. Being treated as a nuisance by other road users, whilst not the norm, was not uncommon. But these days the number of cyclists on that road has increased greatly. Off the top of my head I would say quadrupled or more. Largely because that road is a prime route for cyclists in the urban area of Bridgend wanting to get into the great cycling country of the Vale (of Glamorgan). So you see a lot of lycra, but also less sporty folk riding their cheap bikes they got from Halfords. And the reaction of drivers finding a cyclist on the road has improved.


This is the "Strength in Numbers" effect that CTC has prmoted for quite a few years, and I most certainly believe it! I see it every day when comparing different roads that I use.

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby poetd » 9 Aug 2019, 11:23am

mjr wrote:
hemo wrote:Not locally in the areas of the Surrey Hill's where I regularly deliver to, over 90% of residents and motrons I speak to bemoan the event albeit that it is held on a Sunday the quietest day of the week.

Some of them won't be happy with anything less than a cyclist- hunting season, will they?


That's not quite fair.
It sucks being made a prisoner in your own home because of someone else's leisure activity.
Happens to us twice a year - the Triathlon and Tour De Yorkshire.
We go to a lot of BTCC races, and more often than not a race falls on one of those event days.
Took me more than 20 emails once to the council to get approval to have 1 road opened for us for 1 brief time-window so that we could get out of Leeds.

While all these events are great and fun etc, if you're not involved, being made a prisoner is not really ok.

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby mjr » 9 Aug 2019, 12:19pm

poetd wrote:
mjr wrote:
hemo wrote:Not locally in the areas of the Surrey Hill's where I regularly deliver to, over 90% of residents and motrons I speak to bemoan the event albeit that it is held on a Sunday the quietest day of the week.

Some of them won't be happy with anything less than a cyclist- hunting season, will they?


That's not quite fair.
It sucks being made a prisoner in your own home because of someone else's leisure activity.
Happens to us twice a year - the Triathlon and Tour De Yorkshire.
We go to a lot of BTCC races, and more often than not a race falls on one of those event days.
Took me more than 20 emails once to the council to get approval to have 1 road opened for us for 1 brief time-window so that we could get out of Leeds.

While all these events are great and fun etc, if you're not involved, being made a prisoner is not really ok.

That's really not fair. You're not a prisoner just because you can't drive to your doorstep for a few hours. Such wild rhetoric should be mocked but councils kowtow to it, such is the choking hold that motorists have on our country.

At least you have warning and can move the car in advance, unlike every time one of the incompetent motorists crashes at speed near my home and closes the road for the day while recovery, investigations, fuel cleanup and repairs happen.
MJR, mostly pedalling 3-speed roadsters. KL+West Norfolk BUG incl social easy rides http://www.klwnbug.co.uk
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby Vorpal » 9 Aug 2019, 12:33pm

poetd wrote:
While all these events are great and fun etc, if you're not involved, being made a prisoner is not really ok.

A prisoner? You can't walk? or ride your bike? Or simply plan ahead and spend the day gardening?

When a bike race closed the main road near me in May, I rode my bike down to watch the finish, then went and had an ice cream at the Italian Gelateria across the river from the finish line. It was a nice afternoon out :)

On the routes where there is a loop in one of the towns, they often invite cyclists (especially kids) to ride it motor-traffic-free before the race. Sometimes they have some fun events for the kids, and give out water bottles, jerseys, and bike lights.
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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby poetd » 9 Aug 2019, 1:37pm

Vorpal wrote:
poetd wrote:
While all these events are great and fun etc, if you're not involved, being made a prisoner is not really ok.

A prisoner? You can't walk? or ride your bike? Or simply plan ahead and spend the day gardening?



We had already bought tickets for Brands Hatch when they announced our entire estate would be locked in due to road closures.
And no, walking from Leeds to Brands Hatch (or cycling) isn't reasonable by any stretch of the imagination.

I'm not saying I'm against these events, but I can ALSO (imagine being able to hold 2 positions at the same time, must seem frightening to some of you) sympathise with people who are against these events for that exact reason.
It's not really fair to say to someone - "Sorry you have to cancel all weekend plans that involve any travel out of town because some amateurs want to go cycling around your area."

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Re: Ride London - Does it help the cause of cycling?

Postby horizon » 9 Aug 2019, 2:07pm

(I may have posted this before...)

A couple of years ago I was riding through Surrey and purely by chance found myself on the Ride London route (which was a couple of weeks away), hence the signs telling me what was going to happen! But what struck me was that it didn't change anything in terms of cycling outside the event: speed limits, road markings, vehicle speeds etc were all as "normal". Worst of all was not being able to cycle down Epsom* High Street (AFAIK that still hasn't changed). In fact, it was like having your nose rubbed in it.

I don't object to big events (our little seaside town is closed for the annual Summer Parade :D ) but I don't think they help the cause of cycling as such.

* Edited from Esher. If my memory serves me correctly, it was actually Epsom, which AFAIK isn't on the Ride London Route (Esher is). The natural thing to do is to continue along the High Street from the east which was the original route through Epsom. The one way system is just to ease the way for cars. Has Ride London changed this? Well, no, though some contra-flows are now in existence.
Last edited by horizon on 9 Aug 2019, 5:12pm, edited 1 time in total.
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