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Updated: 1 hour 25 min ago

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 11:30pm
Chop the legs off the barriers, chop the legs off any motorcyclists causing a nuisance. Sorted. I'm fed up of having my life affected by filthy lowlife screbs. I think the police around here do have scramblers for chasing yobs on, I think probably for land near the Manchester Ship Canal, soon to be Port Salford.
I once trapped my sons arm in a barrier whilst he was in a child seat on the back and I was trying to negotiate my way through it, he stuck his arm out whilst I was looking at the bike, trapping his arm between his seat and the upright of the fencing, luckily it was only gently but it could have been much worse, barriers where I have to get off and lift or manoeuvre the bike whilst I have a child in a child seat are dangerous too, as the balance of the bike is wrong and I have less control of it if I'm not sat on it, getting him off and on at each barrier would be far too much of a hassle and dangerous too.

Tanker lorry, spot on driving

25 November 2014 - 11:26pm
Coming home from Letchworth town centre there is a longish sweeping 40mph road that leads directly onto the A1 & A505 Cambridge route, it's the main road for a large portion of traffic from North Herts and beyond so gets very busy. 3/4 along there is a pedestrian refuge that was installed a few years back (which is barely ever used as there are two crossings and an underpass close by), it had no safety assessment done beforehand yet it significantly narrows the road enough that a car & cyclist cannot pass together safely despite the road being much wider than most.
https://www.google.co.uk/maps/@51.97156 ... rU0gmA!2e0

Anyhow, I normally adopt a very central position well before the refuge, I over the shoulder check and hold my position, saw a large tanker behind me this time and expecting it to rumble right up behind me as most vehicles do but no, it didn't accelerate to close the distance down and held a nice 30-40m gap all the way to the give way at the elongated roundabout.
By the time he caught me i was turning off left so stuck a big thumbs up as he was passing.

it was so nice to be able to go through without worrying whether someone was going to try squeeze me out or come bombing up to the back of me as is the case quite often.
Whoever you were mate, cheers, exemplary driving, just wish there were more of you.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 8:44pm
meic wrote:I have seen barriers "removed" ...

Since removed more formally.

Shornemead Crossing NS317.jpg
That was a substantial metal framed barrier, in place for some years until it was attacked in September 2013 with an angle grinder. It took twelve months for the puny replacement to arrive, it hasn't lasted long.

The section of path through a SSSI opened up by the barrier's removal suffers motorcycle abuse. Such abuse also took place before but I have no doubt that it's absence makes it easier.

Vorpal's right though, that's a social issue and an enforcement issue.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 8:21pm
I really like some cycle paths. My regular commute to work (5.5miles) includes about 1.5 miles of cycle path which follows an old railway line, then cuts across fields. Well away from roads for most of the distance. Smooth tarmac too. I see all manner of wildlife: rabbits, mice/voles, deer, owls, raptors, fox, and (once) a badger. It is quiet, and the views are good. Favourite time of year is cycling at dawn or dusk.
I don't mind motorists sharing my roads sometimes - so long as they are careful and courteous- but I'm so pleased that they keep off my cycle track.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 8:03pm
orangebiker wrote:On a point of economics, can anyone explain how the GDP/car thing works?

Using cars and paying for petrol/repairs etc is just one way of spending money that people already have. If they didn't drive a car they would presumably spend it on something else (eg. a bigger house/better food/more bikes....).

Or do you think that if people didn't spend money on cars they would save it up and therefore not be spending it at all?

I am trying to figure out an answer to this. GDP is a crazy measure, not only does it raise with every disaster (and cars do bring about a fair degree of those!) but also it can raise just by passing money from one person to another, even repeatedly.
So GDP will be much higher if a car passes through many owners rather than has one owner for its life.
Cars are quite a large investment, so each transaction has a relatively large effect on GDP.
Compare to food and clothes which are smaller purchases and only transferred between owners a few times, the purchase of the new item normally being the final transaction.

Though I am sure that services and virtual products could be even more use at raising GDP as they dont need any real life material to be bound up in them. The best example being something like turning an un-made bed into £1,000,000 by calling it Art. However most of the population are not quite that gullible.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 7:47pm
In the five years that I carried my daughter around in the trailer, I dont recall any barriers that I was allowed to go through that I couldnt go through but I did have some moments where I almost lost control or fell over. Also she sometimes got a face full of brambles because I couldnt reach her and the bike at the same time.

I was out on a CTC ride this weekend and somebody turned up on anICE trike and they had help lifting it over gates three times that I saw as there was no possibility of it getting through the barriers, without a handy cycle group he would have been unable to pass.

As a Sustrans Ranger I have always raised complaint about barriers, a bit of a personal hobbyhorse. My Coordinators always declare that they too have objected and the barriers are imposed by either private landowners (understandable) or the Council. The Council often cite the Police as declaring it a condition for getting consent for the path, I always ask how or why the Police have any say in this and the answer is along the lines of "that's how it is".

I have seen barriers "removed" and there is one gate between two public roads which is very awkward to open and even get an ordinary bike through and it is between two public roads which join up again in a few hundred meters, I always expect somebody to have lifted it when I get there but it is always still there. I guess because people can just take the A40 for those few hundred meters instead of using the gate to get on the smaller road the NCN route follows.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 7:25pm
[XAP]Bob wrote:And that's the key.
You can't rely on getting off cycle paths, particularly in a new area.
Therefore you can't use them...
It's not can't use them..
It's won't because there's to much uncertainty and/or hassle to use them.

I do use a few around the Northampton/Wellingborough/Kettering area, but it's only because I know them and they do make that part of the trip easier.
But there's a lot I don't because there's no advantage to using them, in a lot of cases it because staying on the road is both quicker and/or safer.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 7:18pm
The best way to get people to change en-mass is to invent something other than a car which meets your needs for less drain on resources damage to the environment etc but which is more desirable from the selfish/ego boosting needs of the user. And bikes and buses don't work in this sense.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 6:54pm
[XAP]Bob wrote:You can't rely on getting off cycle paths, particularly in a new area. Therefore you can't use them...
Quite so. (Thanks, Bob, reohn2, and others; this topic has obviously struck a nerve with a number of people )

Trying to make the best of a bad situation, are there any on-line mapping sites which indicate the presence — if not the nature — of barriers on cycle paths? At the moment I'm reduced to using the street views in the Journey Planner on Cyclestreets.net to check for tandem traps where cycle paths intersect with google-mapped roads … a laborious process and not always satisfactory. (Should I post this as a separate thread? It is about using cycle paths, but is perhaps it's a bit of a diversion on an already-existing diversion … about diversions. )

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 6:27pm
And that's the key.

You can't rely on getting off cycle paths, particularly in a new area.

Therefore you can't use them...

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 6:26pm
Tigerbiten wrote:My whole point is don't trust that I can get down an english cycle path.
I get to the start of one and look down it and think "Am I going to get down it or am I going to be stopped by a barrier/narrow point".
And because I don't trust them, I rarely use them.

Yes I got that,and think it's disgusting that you should have to think that way before considering using what is supposed to be cycle friendly infrastructure.Then to risk the possiblity of being shouted,gesticulated and abused by motorists for not using such bad provision just adds insult to injury!

Mistik-ka's experiences posted up thread infuriate me almost as much as they did him and his wife/stoker.
To think that someone spends money to fly from Canada to the UK for a cycling holiday to be met with this kind of shambolic infrastructure is disgraceful IMO.

Where's the CTC,Sustrans,BC and other cycling support groups in all this?

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 6:13pm
My whole point is don't trust that I can get down an english cycle path.
I get to the start of one and look down it and think "Am I going to get down it or am I going to be stopped by a barrier/narrow point".
And because I don't trust them, I rarely use them.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 4:34pm
mrjemm wrote:By making cars utilitarian devices with minimal comfort and variation between versions, and taking control out of the hands of the occupant, car use will likely diminish radically, I suspect. They are of course very useful, but that should be their extent. There should be a limited or even no element of pleasure in the use of them, and this use should be not easy to abuse- i.e. all are capable of the same, restricted, performance...


As much as I have no real interest in cars the problem with this approach is that you could as easily apply it to bikes. Why should there be carbon fibre road bikes as well as fat-tyred MTBs? Why cyclo-cross as well as hybrids? You'd end up with us all riding three speed, steel-framed step-throughs because it would be cheaper and more energy-efficient (energy in terms of bike-building) than building a vast variety of bikes. Of course the performance of such could be better by young, fit men as opposed to elderly women so in that sense they could not be 'restricted' but essentially you're going down the one-party state model.

Trabant anyone? Or Flying Pigeon? The latter was (and probably still is) the most popular bicycle manufacturer in China. The basic model used to weigh 20 kilos.

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 3:09pm
Bicycler wrote:reohn2 wrote:IMO there's a difference between hillwalking and walking to the shops,the paths required are completely different.
Wheelchair users who wish to experience the countryside won't be able to get to the top of some of the peaks in say the Lakes,or other such highlands.
I think that's accepted to a large degree by them,and that some places aren't safe for wheelchair use.
Of course that's true. Though you would be surprised at the capabilities of modern off road mobility scooters and it is not just those with wheelchairs who struggle with things like stiles.

The principle regarding barriers is the same whether it is an urban ginnel, a moorland bridleway, a cycle path or a road. For any of us a route may be too long, too steep, too poorly surfaced or beyond our abilities and these are things we all have to take into account. However, a man-made barrier should not be the limiting factor which determines whether we may or not use the route.

I agree,I was generalising to make a point that seems obvious to some,but not others

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 3:09pm
ukdodger wrote:What's surprised me in this thread is the total lack of public spiritedness among some cyclists. What's wrong for us apparently should not be allowed sums it up.


Public spriritedness is in contradiction to ukdodger wrote:everyone cant be catered for.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 3:05pm
orangebiker wrote:On a point of economics, can anyone explain how the GDP/car thing works?

Using cars and paying for petrol/repairs etc is just one way of spending money that people already have. If they didn't drive a car they would presumably spend it on something else (eg. a bigger house/better food/more bikes....).

Or do you think that if people didn't spend money on cars they would save it up and therefore not be spending it at all?

It's all to do with profit and how much profit is made,the motor and petrochemical industries are a very lucrative business which wields great power worldwide,their marketing systems promising anything from high status,to almost everlasting life.... ..take a look at some car ads they're laughable to any sane person not high on benzine.....
It hardly matters that the spin offs are ever greater pollution and CO2 emissions and more scrap vehicles than we know what to do with due to to built in obsolescence,etc,etc.
In short,yet again the public has been sold a pup with the help of governments in the pockets of manufacturers and suppliers of fuel for motors.
It's no coincidence that UK government talks of creating ever better cycling provision yet kicks into the long grass(don't you hate that term)such plans when as little as £10 per head of population would boost cycling no end,and encourage people to use bicycles as a means of transport,would at the same time boosting the nations health reducing obesity and type two diabetes.
TBH you couldn't dissuade people more from cycling if you tried,yet against all odds,cycling is on the increase,and still those who hold the purse strings won't build better cycling facilities.
Same goes for public transport,running PT as a profit making industry is a joke leading to bad unreliable services on all but the most profitable routes and even then buses belching out toxins by the bucket load into the faces of their own customer,you couldn't make it up
I'm rambling aren't I?

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 3:04pm
reohn2 wrote:IMO there's a difference between hillwalking and walking to the shops,the paths required are completely different.
Wheelchair users who wish to experience the countryside won't be able to get to the top of some of the peaks in say the Lakes,or other such highlands.
I think that's accepted to a large degree by them,and that some places aren't safe for wheelchair use.
Of course that's true. Though you would be surprised at the capabilities of modern off road mobility scooters and it is not just those with wheelchairs who struggle with things like stiles.

The principle regarding barriers is the same whether it is an urban ginnel, a moorland bridleway, a cycle path or a road. For any of us a route may be too long, too steep, too poorly surfaced or beyond our abilities and these are things we all have to take into account. However, a man-made barrier should not be the limiting factor which determines whether legitimate users may or not use the route.

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 2:48pm
Mick F wrote:Some people are idiots, but not people generally.

Some people are idiots all of the time
All people are idiots some of the time
But all people are not idiots all of the time

Re: Using cycle paths

25 November 2014 - 2:25pm
ukdodger wrote:
That's unfortunate but everyone cant be catered for. Would you welcome being scared stiff or even knocked off by a yobbo on a scrambler? And do you have to go through all that every time with these barriers? I seem to recall getting though most of them with removing the panniers and I carry both. At times I stayed put on my bike too. It was just a matter of lifting the bars over.

You really don't get do you?
The point is that motorcycles riding where they shouldn't,should be stopped by policing,(as others have said it's anti social behaviour),not by stopping a greater number of legitimate of users,using so those same paths!!!!!!!

Re: Is it time for radicalism?

25 November 2014 - 2:24pm
On a point of economics, can anyone explain how the GDP/car thing works?

Using cars and paying for petrol/repairs etc is just one way of spending money that people already have. If they didn't drive a car they would presumably spend it on something else (eg. a bigger house/better food/more bikes....).

Or do you think that if people didn't spend money on cars they would save it up and therefore not be spending it at all?

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