Cycling UK has appealed for more cyclists to have their say on plans by Highways England to ban cycling on a 15-mile stretch of the A63 near Kingston-upon-Hull that includes the UK’s fastest time trial course.
With Highways England extending the expiry date of the consultation by three-and-a-half weeks to Monday 12 March due to a “high level of interest” in the issue, Cycling UK has created an online tool to make it as easy as possible for people to have their say.
The charity says that the proposed ban, which Highways England says is aimed at reducing cyclist casualties, is not backed up by a detailed risk analysis and that it sets a dangerous precedent, calling it “the thin end of the wedge.”
It also says that closing the section of the road between North Cave Interchange and Daltry Street Interchange runs contrary to both government and Highways England policy.
The stretch of road concerned includes the V718 time trial course where, in 2016, Marcin Bialoblocki set a 10-mile time trial record of 16 minutes 35 seconds. Sir Bradley Wiggins also rode a time trial there in 2014 while preparing for his successful UCI Hour Record attempt.
Duncan Dollimore, head of campaigns at Cycling UK, said: “It’s nonsensical to ban bikes from a road because they can’t keep up with the motor traffic. Where does it stop if that’s accepted as a valid argument?
“This is one of the main reasons Cycling UK is objecting to Highways England’s proposed ban of cycling on the A63, but also because it contravenes their own strategy and guidance.”
Given the precedent any ban might create, Cycling UK is urging everyone who cycles or plans to cycle in England to object to it, and since Highways England only accepts submissions in hard copy through the post, rather than allowing people to comment online, it has volunteered to co-ordinate responses via its website.
“Cycling UK has been inundated with concern from the wider cycling community about the ban and what it means for cycling on England’s roads,” Dollimore explained.
“With Highways England making it difficult for objections to be submitted in a simple, time- and cost-efficient fashion, Cycling UK has had to create a tool for people to log their objections.”
He added: “We’ll collate all the objections and deliver them to Highways England’s Leeds office in person on 12 March – doing so by bike of course.”
Objections to the proposed ban can be made on the Cycling UK website here.
Simon joined road.cc 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.