Kirklees Cycling Campaign Newsletter #39 – April 2020


Cycling and Social Distancing:

 

In our recently formed new world we probably have all noticed that, along with an unprecedented number of people walking along our roads, there are also many more people riding bikes who don’t usually do so.

This would seem to be clear evidence that more people would use a bike if they felt safe doing so.

 

Here’s a link to a comic little video showing some current problems when walking in urban streets, but just imagine him riding a bike. (just a warning; it’s probably better on mute).

 

https://twitter.com/theurbangeog/status/1249692793821433856

 

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With half of the world currently in lock-down, and in the wake of empty roads, Pop-up cycle lanes have started to appear in various towns in Europe and the USA. Berlin was one of the first out of the starting blocks, but many other places have quickly followed. Many would like it happen in Kirklees and I have had requests from KCC supporters that we petition the council en masse.

It would certainly test the political will of the cabinet who frequently profess to support measures for safer cycling ‘if only it were possible’.

A measure such as this would have a negligible cost and there can be no arguments about creating longer times for motor journeys. It would be a real measure as to whether there is any truth to some of the political statements of our council leaders.

There is a danger however, in deciding to promote an en masse petition. It will only have an impact if we lobby the council in large numbers. If only a few respond then councillors will have some justification in ignoring it. So PLEASE participate. If you use the CyclingUK form below you can do it in less than 5 minutes, or you can make it more personal if you have a little more time.

 

The thinking behind the petition is that Cycle lanes – protected or otherwise – don’t allow for social distancing of 2metres. But with significantly less motor traffic, there is the opportunity to give more road space to cyclists and encourage more cycling.

 

CyclingUK has launched an appeal to everyone to petition their council to give more road space to cyclists in their local area, and they have made it very quick and easy to do so. It really is an opportunity not to be missed. Please make the council aware that cycling has the potential to change Kirklees’ roads for the better if only there was the political will to make it happen. Visit cycling uk for more details