A Manchester cyclist who uses helmet cam footage to try and shame drivers into improving their behaviour has spoken of his successes in getting apologies from some drivers — but is still remaining anonymous because of abuse from others.
The 24-year-old from Rusholme rides 500 miles a month through the meanstreets of Manchester and posts his videos on his YouTube channel MCR CYclist.
He told the Manchester Evening News: “Drivers who were abusive on the roadside when incidents have happened then view the footage and get in touch to say they are now seeing it from a whole new perspective and are genuinely apologetic. On those occasions, I take down the video because it’s done its job and the drivers seem genuinely aware that what they did was wrong.”
“If I get just one driver to change their ways - and potentially save a cyclist or pedestrian from harm - then what I’m doing is worth it.”
Here's his compilation of his greatest hits - literally in a few cases.
He says uploads only videos where a driver's action has caused serious risk. “If I’m in danger or if I had to take some form of action to prevent myself or others being harmed I upload it.”
Nevertheless, he's asked that his identity be kept hidden so he doesn't get targeted while riding.
“The police have seen my videos and they have spoken to some drivers and considered taking action so I get quite a lot of abuse," he said.
“I don’t want to be vulnerable if people recognise me on my way to work for my own safety.”
Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.
Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.
Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.
The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.