Category Archives: Press
On behalf of the Leicester Cycling Campaign Group (LCCG), I congratulate the anonymous cyclist behind the First Person piece “Why do so many people hate cyclists” (Mercury, May 25). Her experience of anti-cyclist sentiment over the past seven years will have rung a bell (no pun intended) with many people, and her analysis of the psychology behind it was illuminating. But “Anonymous” is something of an exception, in that she continued to ride her bike, despite abuse from motorists. For many new cyclists venturing cautiously on to the roads, just one bad experience can shake their confidence enough to send them on to the pavement, or their bike back into the shed. A “close pass” or a shout of “get off the road!” can undo all their enthusiasm and spoil what should be a liberating and pleasurable experience. That is why LCCG is campaigning for segregated cycling facilities in Leicester. Separating people on bikes from motorised traffic is crucial if Leicester is to become a genuinely cycle-friendly city.
And that means creating high-quality infrastructure, not simply painting lines on pavements. Not all roads are suitable for segregation, but the arterial roads into Leicester are.
So, Anonymous, if you’re not a member, would you like to join LCCG and add your voice to the 200-plus people who are actively campaigning to make Leicester a better city for cycling? Eric Ludlow, LCCG press officer. Read the story for yourself and, if you like, add a comment on the Mercury’s website.
Lots of coverage on local media, starting with Jim Davis and Jo Hayward’s show on Radio Leicester in the morning (starting at about 2:08, including LCCG’s Elizabeth Barner, Steve from Healthy Air Leicester & Leicestershire and Mark Radymski, the person who started the anti-petition).
Then Ben Jackson’s afternoon show starting about 2:06 with some background then interviews done on the street at the start of the demo, including with our youngest demonstrator, 11m old Ellie
A not-great piece on East Midlands Today (starting at 14:00, and available until 7pm on Tuesday 11 November). Well done, Anna, for getting our points across despite some dodgy stats, misinformation and opining from the reporter.
Leicester Mercury’s piece includes lots of quotes from YOU lovely people – thanks again!
Our Press Officer, Eric Ludlow, has written a thoughtful piece following the recent deaths of cyclists in London, reflecting on what we can learn for cycling safely in Leicester. It is published in the Leicester Mercury’s ‘First Person’ column.
Cyclists’ deaths in London have lessons for us
26 November 2013
Six cyclists have been killed in London in the past three weeks. That’s a chilling statistic and there’s no escaping the deeply emotional impact that it creates. It has led to demands for a range of measures to be taken immediately – some aimed at cyclists, others at motorists.
I would prefer to look at what might have caused those deaths and its implications here in Leicester.
by Adrian Troughton, Leicester Mercury
November 23 2013
Campaigning cyclists have warned that new bike paths outside a new supermarket are obstacle courses which will lead to people being injured.
David Warnock, a member of the Leicester Cycling Campaign Group, says that signposts, a lamppost and control boxes are blocking the footways – paths shared by cyclists and pedestrians – near the new Sainsbury’s store, in Melton Road, Rushey Mead.
And if you’re interested, here are links to a couple of posts on Dave’s own blog, with loads of great photos:
Following the news that Leicester’s bid for bike-cash didn’t make the final cut, the 14 August Mercury Opinion column points to the real change needed, with a little help from LCCG’s Eric Ludlow:
Mercury opinion: False start to cycling revolution
A major public relations operation accompanied a Government announcement on cycling investment on Monday. David Cameron was pictured with Olympic stars Chris Hoy and Victoria Pendleton as he pledged £77m to improve cycling routes in a number of cities around the UK.
The Prime Minister said the investment marked the start of a “cycling revolution which will remove the barriers for a new generation of cyclists”.
The bad news, however, was that Leicester’s bid for a slice of this investment was unsuccessful.
The Leicester Mercury’s Yasmin Duffin reports on the city’s missing out on Government cycling millions and LCCG’s proposal to pick up on one of the ideas the funding would have covered:
Leicester misses out on cycling cash
Leicester has failed to win Government funding to improve cycling routes.
The city council submitted a detailed bid to the Government to gain a share of its £77 million to promote cycling around the country.
But it has been announced that cities including Manchester, Leeds, Birmingham, Newcastle, Bristol, Cambridge, Oxford and Norwich will receive cash, but not Leicester.
LCCG’s Eric Ludlow reflects on current concerns over Twitter abuse and it’s effect on cyclists in the Leicester Mercury’s First Person column:
Cyclists do not deserve such Twitter abuse
Who do you hate? Not just dislike or have little time for but actively, angrily hate? The answer for many, it seems is cyclists. The spotlight is now on Twitter for giving a platform to those who want to verbally abuse women.
While all would condemn such ill-treatment, I would like to highlight here the part that the same social media outlet plays in the abuse of cyclists.
A small group of our committee members took Councillor Rory Palmer on a cycling tour around the centre of the city recently, resulting in some encouraging news from the Council’s Cycling Officer, as reported by the Leicester Mercury’s Dan Martin (31 July 2013).
£7m sought to make centre of city more cycle-friendly
Nearly £7 million of Government cash is being sought to try to transform car-dominated parts of Leicester city centre into cycling-friendly areas.
The city council is seeking a share of a £42 million pot of Government cash to fund plans that will see road space reallocated as dedicated cycle lanes.
Someone will be killed unless a city centre junction is improved, say local cyclists.
Leicester Cycling Campaign Group [LCCG] is calling for changes to be made to the junction on Granby Street, where a contra-flow cycle lane crosses Northampton Street. The cycle lane was created some 12 months ago and enables cyclists to use Granby Street in both directions.
Eric Ludlow, spokesperson for LCCG, said:
‘The contra-flow cycle lane is an excellent idea, but there is a desperate need to make changes where it crosses Northampton Street. Motorists are simply not expecting to see anyone approaching from their right, as they know that Granby St is one-way for motorised traffic. And cyclists think they are safe as they are riding in a designated cycle lane. It’s an accident waiting to happen. We warned the council about the dangers when the cycle lane first opened, but nothing has been done. I just hope it doesn’t take the death of a cyclist to make change come about. Comments from our members include:
‘It is horrible, very scary. Since a terrible experience the first time I used it I am super cautious. Cars do not slow down and many just do not look for cyclists at all.’
I have had many horrible experiences at that particular junction. I now tend to use an alternative route which is a real shame.’
‘It’s a glaring error on Granby St and I have had several near-misses there.’
Newly-opened Ebike Electric Cycle Centre supports the campaign for change. Managing Director Liam Dunphy said:
‘Based as we are directly on the junction, and being cyclists ourselves, we have a pretty unique perspective on the problem. Since we opened, four months ago, I don’t think a day has gone by without our seeing a near-miss. Cars barely seem to slow down – the junction needs to be redesigned to force them to do so, otherwise someone is going to be killed.’
The contraflow cycle lane starts at Granby Street’s junction with Belvoir St and Halford St. It is situated on the left-hand side of the carriageway until just after the junction with Northampton Street, where it continues on the right-hand side to link with the Toucan crossing over London Road.