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London riders: have your say on cycling safety

London Assembly calls for cyclists' views at public meeting on 12th of July...

The London Assembly Transport Committee has announced that it will hold a public meeting on the 12th of July for cyclists to air their concerns about cycle safety in london and suggest ways the capital's streets could be made safer.

The meeting is part of an investigation into cycle safety launched yesterday, triggered by the rise in cyclist deaths from 10 in 2010 to 16 in 2011, and further fatalities this year.

The Assembly aims to find out how it can make cycling in London safer, and what it can learn from other cities with good cycling records.

The meeting on the 12th of July will be followed by another on September the 11th with international experts and representatives of the Mayor and TfL.

Mayor Boris Johnson has said that he wants to see the number of Londoners cycling grow by 400 percent by 2026, but concern over safety is the reason most often given by non-cyclists to explain why they do not intend to start riding.

The numbers of cyclists killed or seriously injured in the capital have failed to fall in line with Transport for London’s (TfL) targets, and have actually increased in the past two years.

Chair of the Transport Committee, Caroline Pidgeon AM, said: “We cannot have a situation where more people are being encouraged to cycle at the same time as more cyclists are being killed or injured.

“We intend to sit down with cyclists and hear their concerns before working with experts both here and internationally to identify solutions that will make London’s streets a safer bet for cyclists.”

The terms of reference for the investigation are:

  • To understand the issues facing current cyclists and the barriers to potential cyclists;
  • To examine the plans proposed by the Mayor and TfL to improve cycling safety and increase cycling modal share
  • To generate recommendations to the Mayor and TfL to improve the cycling environment and cycle safety in London.

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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