I REFER to the article ‘Cycle campaign sees riders turn out in droves’ (Herald, June 24) and the reservations expressed in your concurrent Opinion column that the proposed seafront cycle path may transpire to replicate the ‘shoddy’ Brighton counterpart and its attendant dangers, notably to pedestrians.
Certainly it is to be hoped the proposed network of cycle paths ‘linking schools and local communities to the town centre’ proves beneficial to all concerned.
However, many local citizens have serious doubts over whether such provision may simply enhance the present climate of ‘cycling abandon’ and that the town centre, promenade and other locations colonised illegally by pavement cyclists will remain plagued by this scourge.
The Bespoke campaigner quoted attributed the present hazardous trend of pavement cycling to ‘the fear of the motor vehicle dominated roads’.
Nevertheless, cyclists of yesteryear, including my father and brother, when confronted with particularly heavy traffic conditions which temporarily drove them off the roads, at least had the courtesy to dismount and wheel their bikes among pedestrians.
Moreover, while it may transpire their present day counterparts consider it is justifiable to mount the pavement in view of the increasing presence of other conveyances, it should be borne in mind these are for the non-ambulant such as infants and the disabled.
Moreover, they can be rapidly halted in the face of an impending collision while a bicycle cannot, notable in the case of the reprobate habits of speeding and pedestrian-slaloming invariably able to work and, as such, able to dismount and wheel their bikes in crowded thoroughfares, they should do so as a policy of safest common denominator rather than adding to the existing volume of pavement conveyances for more essential use.
Furthermore, the present ‘wheel frenzy’, now also comprising skateboarding, and speed skating should surely also be confined to designated arenas in the public interest.