Like this site? Help us to make it better.

Near Miss of the Day 15: Tractor driver holds line, almost hits cyclist

Our regular feature highlighting close passes caught on camera from around the country – today it’s Wiltshire

If you ride regularly in the countryside, you'll know just how frightening it can be when a tractor is bearing down on you.

That's what happened to reader John Berry on Sunday as he rode into Cricklade, Wiltshire, in what he described as "more like a head-on" than a close pass.

"I was doing the decent thing, pulling up next to a wide bit of road to allow him to pass safely ... and he just held his line," said John.

"I guess he pays 'road tax' and I was only on a bike ... what right did I have!"

We can't help wondering, the way the tractor driver carries straight on, whether he even noticed John in the first place.

Asked if he'd reported it to the police, John said he had "given up reporting."

That's a sentiment that we know is shared by many cyclists around the country who have flagged up instances of shocking driving to the police, often with video evidence, only to be told that no action will be taken against the driver.

Tri-Force Roads Policing, which brings together traffic officers from Avon & Somerset, Wiltshire and Gloucestershire, launched its first close pass operation last month targeting motorists who give cyclists insufficient room, with officers using a mat provided by the charity Cycling UK to show how much space should be given.

Over the years has reported on literally hundreds of close passes and near misses involving badly driven vehicles from every corner of the country – so many, in fact, that we’ve decided to turn the phenomenon into a regular feature on the site. One day hopefully we will run out of close passes and near misses to report on, but until that happy day arrives, Near Miss of the Day will keep rolling on.

If you’ve caught on camera a close encounter of the uncomfortable kind with another road user that you’d like to share with the wider cycling community please send it to us at info [at] or contact us via the Facebook page.


Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

Latest Comments