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Family of cyclist killed at Ludgate Circus calls for change on London's roads

Mother of victim pleads on behalf of "parents who are losing children on the streets of London"...

The family of the cyclist who died as a result of a collision at Ludgate Circus last week has called on Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, to act urgently to reduce road danger in the city.

Janina Gehlau was a 26-year-old history of arts student from Dusseldorf, Germany who had come to London in September for a three-month volunteer project for her dissertation.

She died in Royal London Hospital on October 20, after being involved in a collision with a lorry on October 17.

Yesterday her husband Marcel Gehlau told the Evening Standard's Matthew Beard and Ross Lydall: "For coming to London, she has been punished. She did no harm to anyone."

Unable to afford public transport, Janina Gehlau bought a second-hand bike to visit galleries and museums, according to Mr Gehlau and Janina's mother Andrea Tasic.

Asked if Boris Johnson should do more to improve safety, Ms Tasic said: “Most certainly — you need to seize this opportunity.

“This issue is affecting parents who are losing children on the streets of London and being made unhappy. The city has got to stop it.”

They said roads were safer in Germany, and called for all road users to be more considerate.

“Cyclists should take more care and especially stop weaving through traffic,” Mr Gehlau said.

“Bus drivers and lorry drivers need to have better all-round visibility from their driving position. Everyone on the road needs to take more care. That would have been in Janina’s interests.

“Bike lanes are one part of the solution but they are not enough. The whole mentality needs to change. Road users need to become more considerate to one another.”

MS Tasic visited London to see her daughter between October 7 and 10. She said they saw cyclists, many on road-racing bikes, riding "crazily fast".

“They were riding so fast it was like a jungle,” she said.

She discussed her concerns with her daughter, she said.

“She wore a helmet all the time. She was a very experienced cyclist and she rode all the time when she was in Germany."

Acknowledged by the Telegraph as a leading cycling journalist, John Stevenson has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.

He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.

Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for CyclingNews.com. Along with road.cc editor Tony Farelly, John was on the launch team for BikeRadar.com and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.

John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of TotalWomensCycling.com before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.

He joined road.cc in 2013 and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.

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