Why are cyclists often banned from public areas? - The GCN Show

From bike paths being closed to cyclists being barred from pedestrianised areas, Dan Lloyd and Si Richardson consider the dehumanisation of those on two wheels

Clock19:02, Tuesday 16th April 2024

In this week's GCN Show, Dan Lloyd and Si Richardson are casting their eyes over an issue close to Si's heart, which is a public attack on the rights of cyclists and where we can ride.

We are increasingly hearing from our viewers, listeners and readers that cyclists are being banned from cycling in public areas, from Si's own experience in Bristol to our friends over the Atlantic Ocean in North America.

So often, it seems that when infrastructure is being tinkered with in cities, be it repairs, improvements or brand-new stretches of road, it is cyclists who are the first to be asked not to use the thoroughfares on account of 'safety concerns.' Equally, cycle paths and routes are often quick to close at the behest of local government when something deemed 'more important' is taking place.

Recently in the United Kingdom, we have seen cyclists banned from pedestrianised areas in towns such as Grimsby and Scunthorpe, which is an idea that was tried in Prague in 2018 but was ultimately overturned through legal action after months of discontent.

The uniting notion underlying many of these schemes is a dislike towards cyclists, an eagerness to ban cyclists and get those on two wheels 'out of the way' of others. It points to the dehumanisation of cyclists that has been discussed on the GCN Show in recent months.

Read more: GCN Show: Helmets make cyclists appear ‘less than human’, so what should we do?

Indulge us for a moment here. 'The effect of safety attire on perceptions of cyclist dehumanisation' was published in Volume 95 of Transportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, and within it, argued that cyclists are often considered by others as less than human - on a par with insects in the most extreme cases.

With this attitude towards cyclists from motorists, it's no wonder that local authorities are able to treat cyclists as secondary citizens whilst the motoring world is allowed to continue unabashed, its dangers by now normalised in popular culture.

To hear more from Dan and Si's discussion on the issue, check out this week's GCN Show at the top of this page.

That's not to forget the uploader, which is said to be on its way in the coming weeks. Dan has had a stern word with stat man Cillian Kelly, who promises us that the uploader has his undivided attention now that he has conquered the cobbles of the Tour of Flanders. We shall see Cillian!

Read more: Average Joe vs the Tour of Flanders: Cillian Kelly takes on the cobbles of Flanders

Topeak Competition

Don't forget, we have a highly desirable competition prize on offer for a few more days courtesy of our friends at Topeak. You could win this PakGo Ex bike box which is perfect for transporting your bike around without it getting knocked or damaged. That's not all as there's also a Tune-up station as part of the top prize bundle – that's Topeak's bike storage and charger combination stand. Three runners-up will each get a Tune-up station. Please check our full terms and conditions before entering.

To enter then click on this competition link.

You’ll need to fill in your details and answer a simple question about the PakGo bike box. Entries close on 19 April and winners will be announced in an upcoming GCN Show. Good luck!

Hacks and Bodges

In this week's Hacks and Bodges section, Dan and Si run their fingers over your latest entries, from exposed battery cavities to affordable plumbing solutions! Without further ado, give us your thoughts on the following entries in the comments below - are they Hacks or Bodges?

A towel and cardboard will do for Richard

Our first entry comes courtesy of Richard from Tarland, Scotland. He had a missing cover plate on his Trek Fuel eXe e-mountain bike and instead of accepting defeat, Richard used the materials he had to hand to fill the gap. We will let him explain.

"I know it’s a mountain bike, and an e-bike at that, but I thought this was quite a good hack. Arrived at the trail centre and found that I had not packed the cover plate for the battery. Improvised by stuffing the cavity with a piece of towel, and then taping a piece of cardboard over the gap using a Velcro strap. Worked a treat, despite the snow and ice on the trails."

Michael turns to plumbing supplies for his turbo trainer build

Writing to us from Lawrence, Kansas, Michael has found an affordable method of building up his turbo trainer setup, with plumbing supplies coming in particularly handy. Naturally put off by the expense of adapters, Michael used a cheap plumbing fitting to do the same job.

It may look unusual, but it only cost him a few bucks!

An old brake lever does the job for Jacob

Handlebar bags can be incredibly useful when out riding. Whether it be tucking a sandwich or two into the bag for lunch or carrying extra layers for when the weather takes a turn, the storage opportunities are endless with a medium-sized bag attached to your handlebars.

But they do have their downsides, with the attachment of a handlebar a usual source of frustration. Straps can be too long, too intrusive and sometimes, unable to get a secure fit at the front-end of your bike. This is a particular problem on a mountain bike, where the rough trails and gnarly terrain can cause handlebar bags to bounce up and down.

To counteract this issue, Jacob has used an old brake lever to secure his handlebar bag in place. Of no use on an old bike, he has affixed the lever to the middle of his Specialized handlebars and threaded it through a strap on the back of his bag. This seems to be a fine example of recycling old gear into a new setup.

Perhaps Jon Cannings was right to hoard so much of his old stash...

Read more: Confessions of a cycling hoarder

Coming up on the channel this week*

Wednesday 17 April: How do I train for endurance cycling?

Thursday 18 April: What should I wear when cycling?

Friday 19 April: Does caffeine make you faster?

Saturday 20 April: Episode 3 of outrageous bikes that the UCI have banned: Introducing the Hotta

Sunday 21 April: The latest tech from the Sea Otter Classic and our Presenter BuyCycle challenge

*All channel content subject to change!

Did you know?
You can now listen to The GCN Show as a podcast. That means you can still get all the insight from the latest episode of the show without actually having to look at Dan and Si at all, if that's ever been an issue for you. Search for 'Global Cycling Network' on your chosen podcast provider.

If you have liked the look of Dan and Si's t-shirts over the past couple of months, the good news is they're available now to buy over on the GCN Shop. There are loads of designs and styles to help you celebrate the spring racing season. Head over there or click on the rail below for more info.

Competition Rules
This promotion is not open to those residing in Ukraine, Belarus and Russia.

Entries close 10:00BST Friday 19th April 2024 and winners will be announced in a GCN Show from Tuesday 23rd April February 2024.

For more info see our full Terms and Conditions

For all things general news, check out this tab on the GCN website.

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