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The worst one yet? Sign warns cyclists "you are my targets"; Where are Winstanleys? Retailer not answering customers; No French sport until September; Cyclist told "go home" by pickup driver; 3T 3D-printing valves for dive masks + more on the live blog

Tuesday's live blog is brought to you courtesy of Jack Sexty, with Simon MacMichael making some contributions later this evening...
28 April 2020, 15:56
"You are my targets": another worrying sign spotted on Welsh border

The sign was reportedly spotted in Newtown, Powys, with a reply claiming that it was reported to the police and the person(s) reponsible were spoken to for making a public order infringement.

The original tweet attributes blame to the alleged use of 'foreshortening' by press photographers, a technique using a telephoto lens that makes things appear closer together than they actually are - The Times and The Sun were amongst UK titles accused of using the technique in articles that claimed cyclists were ignoring lockdown rules. 

28 April 2020, 15:41
£10 million pledged for active travel in Scotland
transport scotland.PNG

The Scottish Government are pumping the funds into new pop-up infrastructure to better enable physical distancing during the pandemic. They say this will be supported by a package of guidance and support to local authorities from Transport Scotland and Sustrans Scotland for improvements such as widened pavements and cycle lanes.

Lee Craigie - a former pro mountain biker and now the Active Nation Commissioner for Scotland, commented: “Access to safe, pleasant places to exercise is good for everyone’s physical and mental health but it has taken this crisis for towns and cities across the world to realise the urgency with which space for walking, running, cycling and wheeling is needed, and especially in our urban areas.

“It has never been more important that we look after our own health and the health of members of our society who have limited access to such spaces.

“I welcome wholeheartedly the Scottish Government’s new guidance and funding measures so that local authorities might more easily reallocate space in favour of people being active. When life resumes its usual pace, let’s not forget how good it feels to enjoy having more space to move freely.”

28 April 2020, 14:57
Breaking: French Prime Minister says no sporting events in the country until September, pushing proposed Tour de France start date back further

The already rearranged Tour de France will most likely have to be rerranged again, as Edouard Philippe has just announced that mass sporting events cant resume until September. That means the French football and rugby leagues are essentially cancelled, and it's expected to mean the 107th edition of the Tour de France can't now start on 29th August as we reported earlier this month

Full story to follow. 

28 April 2020, 13:43
Winstanleys online store inundated with negative reviews over order delays
winstanleys google reviews.PNG

The Wigan-based retailer - which also has a shop on the outskirts of the city - has received a number of complaints on Google Reviews, Truspilot and in the comments section on their last Facebook post dated 12th July 2018 from customers who claim they haven't received their orders, or any communication regarding the orders' status. 

winstanleys facebook comments.PNG
winstanleys trustpilot 1.PNG

Winstanleys have posted COVID-19 updates on their website, which says they are "open online and delivering" and currently dealing with a backlog of emails from the 18th-19th April; however many of the complaints are from customers who claim to have ordered long before these dates. They also say they have temporarily closed their phone lines, frustrating many customers who want to speak to staff, and are taking on extra staff to speed up responses. 

winstanleys trustpilot 2.PNG

As we reported last week, many bike retailers are experiencing unprecedented demand worldwide described as 'Black Friday levels' of sales, with many people turning to two wheels to get their daily exercise... a manager of a Giant store in Sydney went as far as to say bikes are "the new toilet paper".

Are Winstanleys simply unable to keep up with the increased demand, or is something else going on? We've asked Winstanleys for a statement.

28 April 2020, 13:22
More bike brands switching production: Primal making face masks, and 3T helping Decathlon to make diving masks

To help their businesses survive and keep staff in work, it's been reported that numerous brands in the bike industry have switched production to making protective products during the pandemic. 

Apparel brand Primal - who make the totally legendary road.cc Evo jersey - have ceased making custom team gear to manufacture Deborah Meaden-approved washable face masks.

Meanwhile, Italian bike brand 3T told Triathlete that they've started to produce valves for Decathlon diving masks (that are being requested by hospitals to turn in to ventilators) using a 3D printer. Their General Manager Rene Wiertz said: “In extraordinary circumstances, we need to do extraordinary things, and priority one is saving lives. It turned out we could produce valves for Decathlon diving masks, so we did. Now we stopped producing cranks and are making as many valves as we can in the 3D printer. I hope this helps to save lives.

“Other than a human tragedy, this is also an economic disaster. We keep shipping bikes because, in the end, we need to save jobs, too. We hope we can turn the page on this terrible situation as soon as possible.”

Check out off.road.cc's round-up of other brands who have altered production here

28 April 2020, 13:00
Tour de France 1987 TV intro, remade

Enjoy this huge slice of epic nostalgia, because it's probably the closest we're going to get to Tour de France action this summer as things stand.

28 April 2020, 12:57
A correction
1024px-Ford_F-150_crew_cab_--_05-28-2011

Yep, drivers of these things aren't actually truck drivers (not when they're driving a pick-up anyway)... apologies for the error. 

28 April 2020, 11:34
New Tech Eye Candy - Brooks England release special edition black and copper C17 saddle
Brooks England C17 SE Black Copper

Looking for a new saddle for your urban bike? Well, Brooks England has just released a rather fancy special edition of their C17 saddle.

It features a black “vulcanised organic cotton and natural rubber top combined with copper anodised rivets and a copper anodised backplate.”

We know that the C17 works well. John reviewed it back in 2014 and while there’s nothing structurally different about this new release, the “unique premium details” bump the price up from £105 to £140.

brooksengland.com

28 April 2020, 10:26
Derbyshire lecturer was told to "go home" by a pick-up driver when delivering food by bike, and claims abuse has worsened during lockdown

As a further example of some members of the public wrongly attempting to enforce government advice (see yesterday's blog), Dr Kate Wilkinson Cross told the BBC that she has experienced "much more abuse" on her local roads around Derbyshire's Hope Valley during the lockdown:

"Since lockdown I’ve experienced much more abuse than I have ever had while cycling in the valley", said the De Montfort University Law Lecturer. 

Wilkinson Cross added that when she was out delivering food by bike with her partner, a pickup truck driver shouted abuse and told them to "go home":

The lecturer said she and her partner cycled together to deliver food to a friend locally – and a driver in a pick-up truck shouted abuse telling them to ‘go home’.

“The ironic thing was he was less than 2m away from me when it happened.

“I feel vulnerable going cycling on my own. I’m well within my rights to do so, but I don't want to have to respond to abuse like this.

“It’s making me think twice about where I cycle.”

28 April 2020, 10:59
London Cycle Campaign sign up 200 key workers on free membership package

LLC hit the milstone 19 days after launching the scheme, which allows any London key worker with an NHS or hospital ID to take advantage of the free public liability insurance and shop discounts that come with an LCC membership. 

Dr Jonathan Kelly of Bart’s Hospital, who helped to organise the collaboration, commented:  “The free LCC member’s insurance is clearly a big draw, but my colleagues are finding the LCC support network really helpful. Being new, or ‘returnees’ to cycling, LCC has been a great go-to place for information and general advice on subjects ranging from route-finding to maintenance. Some have connected with their local LCC groups and have found the local advice really helpful also.”

London-based key workers can sign up here

28 April 2020, 09:06
Lambeth Council spend £75,000 on emergency transport plans, including Cycleway upgrades and footpath widening

Lambeth Council have published a paper detailing a whole host of measures to make active travel safer during the pandemic. Propositions include working with Transport for London to create temporary cycle lanes on key routes, widening of pavements at pinch points and making Roupell Street and Cornwall Road in the north of the borough access-only for motor vehicles, 

Strategy manager Simon Phillips said: "The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in profound changes to travel patterns and how people are using streets in Lambeth and beyond.

"This is likely to continue even after the current emergency period has passed. There is an immediate need to enable physical distancing in order to limit contagion and prevent a second surge, and this cannot always be safely accommodated within existing transport networks and infrastructure."

All the recommendations have been approved, and full details can be seen on the Lambeth Council website

28 April 2020, 08:35
More temporary cycle lanes popping up

After we reported that a 'keyworkers corridor' has been created in Leicester, it appears more roads around the country are now being repurposed with less motor traffic on the roads.

Hackney Councillor Jon Burke blasted the government for "gaslighting" the public over temporary infrastructure, claiming that new guidance doesn't give councils more power than before to implement safe cycling and walking space during the lockdown; however, Cycling UK's Head of Campaigns Duncan Dollimore told road.cc:

“The new DfT guidance does make it easier for councils to satisfy the rules for advertising proposed traffic orders, which is sensible and we welcome, but it doesn’t give councils any other new powers.

“That doesn’t mean councils have an excuse to do nothing. As shown by Cycling UK’s guide for councils, there’s plenty they can do to create space now to make social distancing easier and relieve pressure on public transport for when lockdown is relaxed, either without any order or through an experimental traffic order made after seven days’ notice.

“Cycling UK would urge everyone who wants to see more space for social distancing, whether you’re walking, cycling or taking public transport to speak up now and get in touch with their council via our online tool.”

That online tool is here

28 April 2020, 08:29
Bradley Wiggins hits the big 4-0

The 2012 Tour de France winner-turned charismatic motorbike commentator has turned 40. Eurosport have marked the ocassion with some of the best 'Brad on a bike' moments from last summer's Tour de France.

28 April 2020, 08:25
Venice by boat-bike

It's been widely reported that the Venice canals are looking cleaner than ever and wildlife is even starting to return.

28 April 2020, 08:15
Will the rain affect your riding plans?
 

After six months of solid rain, we've finally had a bucket load of sunshine this last month or so (ironically pretty much coinciding with when the lockdown began)... but it looks like the heavens are opening again, so will you stick to the turbo this week? Feel free to take part in our poll for no reason whatsoever. 

28 April 2020, 10:38

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Arriving at road.cc in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of road.cc in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.  

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