The title of this post is the headline for an article in Portsmouth’s daily newspaper published on 18 July. Here is a response from Portsmouth Cycle Forum_._
Portsmouth Cycle Forum does not condone illegal cycling, yet one must ask why a minority of people take to the pavements.
The answer is that many fear for their safety on the city’s busy and crowded roads.
Portsmouth has a collection of disjointed, badly signed and poor quality cycle lanes often ending abruptly throwing the cyclist into the traffic.
Cyclists are encouraged to use the so-called quieter back streets which are choked with parked cars, obscured junctions and used by some motorists who are unaware of the prevailing speed limits.
Plans for cycle improvements are often promised, but last year’s highways budget of £2million had nothing for cycle enhancements.
Travelling by bicycle is increasing in popularity, it is cheap, healthy and environmentally friendly. Major cities such as Copenhagen, New York, London have all embraced cycling and have many new measures to encourage it.
Rather than urging just cyclists to be more polite, the Police should be urging all road users to be more polite – and this must include enforcing the speed limits on our roads. Perhaps then will the problem of pavement cycling disappear.
You can read the News article and Portsmouth City Council’s Summer push for polite cycling.