Tributes pour in for Bristol cycling campaigner Chris Hutt

'Best cycle route designer in Britain' dies aged 59

by Tom Henry   March 22, 2010  

road.cc news

Tributes are coming in for Chris Hutt, the Bristol-based cycling campaigner who was found dead at his home over the weekend.

Chris was a tireless worker for cycling in the city, and was pivotal in bringing about the creation of the Bristol to Bath cycle path. Neither was he slow to criticise, particularly in recent months over the apparent shortcomings of Bristol City Council to implement its Cycling City status fully for which the self styled "Grumpy old man about town" used his Green Bristol Blog to withering effect, he also contributed insightful comments to Britsol transport stories here on road.cc.

It is understood the 59-year-old died peacefully in his chair. Paramedics were called to his home in Clifton at about 7pm on Saturday but he was already dead. It is thought he suffered from heart problems.

John Grimshaw, founder and former chief executive of sustainable transport charity Sustrans told the Bristol Evening Post: "I have lost a colleague of so many years, the best of route devisers and cycling companion, and a friend indeed.

"He was secretary of Cyclebag in the early 80s and the group promoted and built parts of the Railway Path. He really was the best person in Britain for designing and sorting out cycle routes.

"It is a terrible loss, he was a loyal and great citizen of Bristol. He was also the best plumber in the west. He plumbed in the four fountains on the route and when the fountain on Castle Green was first installed he plumbed it so red wine came out of one side and orange out of another."

Glenn Vowles, parliamentary candidate for Bristol East, said: "We've lost a great green campaigner with a distinctive libertarian perspective and a very committed, independent- minded and persistent character.

"I first met Chris over 20 years ago and I've worked with him a lot recently on cycling and green spaces issues. I know just how strongly he felt about excellent achievements like the Bristol to Bath Railway Path."

Councillor Jon Rogers, Bristol City Council's transport chief said: "Chris was an exceptional man. He has been involved in promoting a greener more sustainable lifestyle in Bristol for many years.

"He was very much involved in the early days of the Bristol to Bath railway path and worked with Sustrans and other partners to see it delivered to the success it is today.

"He was passionate about cycling and determined Cycling City delivered its true potential in Bristol. I met and corresponded with him on many occasions over the last few years and came to know him and admire him a great deal."

* Did you know Chris? If you have any memories of him, feel free to post below.