Disappointingly, there is no way that I’ll now make the 14.55 train from Cardiff to Paddington today. So I’ll have to do my bit via the medium that is available to me; the internet.If you’re in the London area today and equipped with two wheels and enough time on your hands, head over to the Mall at 18.15 (18.30 start) for a ride that will aim to raise awareness of road danger and ask MPs to make the success of continental-standard infrastructure a key part of their Commons debate on cycling the following day.
Details of the ride (courtesy of The London Cycling Campaign) are as follows:
The ride is being organised and marshalled by iBikeLondon, Cyclists in the City and the London Cycling Campaign. It will be sensibly marshalled and respectful to other road users. Expect it to last around 45 minutes.
The Mall (Duke of York steps) – Horseguards Parade – Parliament Square – Lambeth Bridge – Westminster Bridge – Parliament Square – Whitehall – Trafalgar Square – Admiralty Arch – The Mall.
So why is this important? If you pedal two wheels, every time you share the road, you share it with hurtling metal boxes capable of inflicting massive injury or worse. There is little protection afforded to cyclists, despite reducing inner city traffic chaos, contributing significantly to carbon emission reductions, exacting few demands on road surfaces, generating little noise pollution and making urban spaces more people centric.
Incidentally for the irate motorists out there who struggle to empathise, I also drive a hurtling metal box. Except I try not to make it hurtle and I only use it when I really need to. 95% of the time my metal box keeps a patch of tarmac dry outside my house. Why? Because it’s cheaper, quicker, healthier and more sensible to cycle. Oh and before the weather thing is laid on me, so far at least, I’ve discovered that I don’t erode in the rain, melt in the sun or solidify in the cold (and quite often it’s dry). Sermon over.