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Pedal Me slam drivers who say parents road riding with kids are 'irresponsible'; Council to dish out fines for bike lane parking; New lockdown rule confusion; New Manchester infra not what it seems; Ronaldo and family go cycling + more on the live blog

Welcome to Friday's live blog, with Jack Sexty in charge throughout the day plus the odd contribution from the rest of the team...
29 May 2020, 15:57
Pedal Me hit back at drivers who say parents riding with children on roads are 'irresponsible'

The London-based cargo bike delivery and taxi service say that drivers who cannot negotiate the roads while children are cycling on it are "not fit to drive". It's in response to alleged criticism of parents who cycle on the roads with their children, with Pedal Me continuing in the Twitter thread: "In particular, given the associations between air pollution and bad Covid19 outcomes, and the fact that cycling is in the open air and therefore minimises the chances of making those you're travelling with sick - it's one of the most responsible ways to travel.

"If it's at all possible - please do not drive. Bikes work for the vast majority of trips, please get one."

Recently, Pedal Me said they were prepared to compete with the likes of Amazon who want to move into the cycle courier space: “We have the training tools, the kit, the tech to support cycle logistics. We stand ready to assist those bigger players genuinely committed to reducing the harm they’re doing in cities.

“If not, we’ll just set up competitor products and outcompete companies insisting on using outdated motor-based logistics, as we have done in same day and on demand city logistics.”

29 May 2020, 14:50
Council parking officials will be able to ticket cars parked in cycle lanes from 22nd June using cameras

This could potentially be very welcome news for anyone who has got fed up of having to move out of a cycle lane because of parked cars - spotted by Alex Dutton according to the All Party Cycling Group, the new regulations effective as of 22nd June mean that in England, council parking officials will now have the powers to ticket cars parked in mandatory cycle lanes (the ones with solid white lines) using cameras, whereas previously only the police had the power to issue tickets. 

Contraflow cycle lane (copyright Simon MacMichael)

While this could go a long way towards deterring drivers who are guilty of parking in cycle lanes, it still doesn't address a legal loophole described as “an absolute mess” by Cycling UK, that does allow drivers to park in mandatory cycle lanes introduced after 2016. This is due to a 2016 update to the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions. To give an example of the confusion, our news editor Simon had no idea if the mandatory lane in the photo above was introduced before or after the 2016 legislation. 

Could we have a situation where drivers could contest a ticket citing this strange loophole? Hopefully a Highway Code update will follow this news...

29 May 2020, 15:27
Ronaldo latest footballer to catch the cycling bug

Mo Salah impressed us with his taste as he was spotted riding a Vitus Razor with tan wall tyres recently; and now it's Ronaldo plus family taking to two wheels. Not too sure about that cap and lid combo though... 

29 May 2020, 14:50
Our full story on what the latest lockdown rules means for cyclists
29 May 2020, 14:16
Lockdown rules latest: Cycling UK say latest guidance still means exercise only permitted with one person outside of the household
coronavirus - cyclists rides past social distance warning

We've just had this back from Duncan Dollimore - Cycling UK’s head of campaigns - who says that based on the government's latest guidance update published on the 29th June, it would appear that the new rules coming in on the 1st June DON'T apply to exercising. Here's the statement in full: 

"An announcement was made to the nation on Thursday 28, May 2020 by Prime Minister, Boris Johnson, saying from Monday 01 June in England up to six people are allowed to meet outside, provided those from different households continue strictly to observe social distancing rules by staying two metres apart.

"Government guidance published mid-morning on Friday, 29 May has not reflected this change with current guidance on exercise in England still maintaining for purposes of exercise you are still allowed to meet with one person who is not a member of your household, provided social distancing is maintained.

"Cycling UK will continue to monitor developments and currently advises in England exercise is only taken alone, with members of your household or with one person who is not a member of your household, provided social distancing is maintained."​

So unlike previously - where a ban on sitting in public places wasn't allowed but exercise was for individuals and families from the same household - it seems we could now be in a position where up to six people from different households can meet socially but not for exercise, unless further clarifications are made on or before 1st June. Our take? Probably best hold off on the group rides for now... 

29 May 2020, 12:08
Continuing confusion for cyclists over latest lockdown rules, as British Cycling and Cycling UK still deciding on best advice
lockdown 1st june comments 2.PNG
lockdown 1st june comments 1.PNG

Debate is continuing among cyclists over whether the new lockdown rules in England - which state you can meet outdoors with up to five others from different households - mean that they now have the green light to organise group rides. On our social channels many have come to the conclusion that it still isn't responsible, as keeping a group at a two metre distance from one another (which is still perhaps too close as we've outlined before) will be very difficult to manage while dealing with motor traffic and various other considerations when riding on the road. 

British Cycling and Cycling UK have now responded to road.cc, saying that they are both in the process of updating their guidance based on last night's announcements - Cycling UK saying their advice will cover England only. It appears that once again the government's new rules aren't completely clear, as cyclists are left confused over what they should and shouldn't be doing. 

29 May 2020, 13:16
William Fotheringham's slippery encounter from latest bike ride

We're sure author and journalist Mr Fotheringham will have encountered quite a few snakes during his career, having covered professional cycling for The Guardian since 1989... 

29 May 2020, 13:12
Why do cyclists ride on the pavement?

Because there aren't any cycle lanes... and if there are, a lot of them aren't very good as outlined in our feature on the matter

29 May 2020, 12:52
Fabio Jakobsen has a few minor bike details missing this Quick-Step plug

It looks like the Dutchman has landed himself some light PR work flogging floors for his team's title sponsor... we'll assume the brakes and various other oily things are missing from this pic because young Fabio doesn't want to damage the shiny new laminate, as he won't get very far just on the bits we can see... 

29 May 2020, 11:58
Are you a 'Steve'? An all-too-true drawing for the person who thinks they know everything about bikes

From informing us the brakes are set up wrong to passing an obscure judgement on hub bearings, we all probably know a lot of Steve's, or are guilty of occasionally doing a Steve ourselves. 

29 May 2020, 11:33
James Golding, the man who beat cancer twice and survived getting hit by a truck, subject of new documentary

Red Bull have released a short documentary on Golding, an ultra-endurance cyclist who has survived two bouts of cancer and being hit by a truck at 70mph. 

He's now training for Race Across America and aiming to be the first British winner, having overcome extraordinary adversity along the way. 10 years ago and weighing six stone, he was given less than a 5% chance of surviving emergency cancer surgery: "I'm 28 years old and I've got my mum wiping my arse. It's not what anybody wants to be dreaming of", Golding says. 

While attempting an ultra ride from L.A to Miami in 2010, Golding was hit by a truck in New Orleans, but recovered and did the full journey again in 24 days. His cancer then returned and he suffered from severe depression, but after recovering again he went on to break the Guinness World Record for the most distance cycled in seven days in 2017, at 2,830km (1,760 miles). COVID-19 cancelled his plans for RAAM in 2020, but Golding plans to complete his own cycling challenges before taking it on in 2021. 

Definitely worth 15 mins or so of your latest Friday WFH lunchbreak. 

29 May 2020, 09:06
Will you be organising a group ride when the new rules kick in?
 

From 1st June, residents of England will be allowed to meet up to five others outside while observing social distancing - which means that technically, it would appear that socially distanced group rides are permissible (though as has become customary, we're not exactly sure yet). In Scotland riding in a group could be possible if that group is made up of two households, with eight allowed to meet outside at once. In Wales things are more restricted still, with two households allowed to meet but only within a five mile radius of their homes. British Cycling are yet to provide clarity in light of the new rules, with their latest guidance updated on the 27th May still recommending no organised activity. 

As it's widely thought that a safe distance to keep from other cyclists during the pandemic is far greater than two metres, do you think group riding is a good idea or not in this phase of the lockdown? Take part in our poll.

29 May 2020, 09:50
Police appeal in Scotland as cyclist is stabbed in 'unprovoked' attack
Police tape (CC licensed by freefotouk on Flickr)

Police Scotland are appealing for witnesses after two cyclists were attacked, with one stabbed, in what appeared to be an unprovoked attack.

Renfrewshire24 report that on the 27th May two men on bikes were approached by eight other men, resulting in an altercation. A 37-year-old man suffered a number of 'serious injuries' including stab wounds, while a 29-year-old suffered facial injuries.  

Detective Inspector Ian Ross of Renfrewshire CID commented: “This attack appears to have been unprovoked and we are carrying out extensive enquiries to identify those responsible.

“Anyone who was in the area on Wednesday evening and may have seen or heard a disturbance or who has any other information is urged to come forward.

“Anyone who can help our enquiries can call 101, quoting incident 4285 of 27 May, or call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.”

29 May 2020, 09:27
"Very silly, but fun and exciting": cyclists charging a Tesla

Here are nine cyclists on Finnish TV putting 2km of charge into a Tesla Model X, a record apparently. Who needs actual chargers?

29 May 2020, 09:49
A slogan that will definitely save lives
29 May 2020, 08:31
Transport for Greater Manchester accused of sharing misleading pics to promote new cycling 'infrastructure'

Posted side-by-side by artist and tech expert Dan Hett, the image on the left shows an image frequently used by Transport for Greater Manchester to promote new cycling infrastructure in the city... and on the right is what this cycle lane actually is, a short stretch of green paint in the Deansgate area of the city that appears to serve little purpose. 

On their Twitter account, TfGM have been replying to some of the negative comments by claiming that their Safe Streets Saves Lives campaign "will see new measures implemented to give pedestrians & cyclists more space to keep them safe when travelling" - which begs the question, why are they using an example that will arguably do little to improve safety? 

Manchester's Walking and Cycling Commissioner Chris Boardman has been instrumental in implementing the good parts of Manchester's new cycling infrastructure, including the design of the extensive Bee Network and pushing for temporary cycle lanes during the pandemic. He said of the Safe Streets Saves Lives campaign: “Like any successful response to a crisis, people must be the priority. And fortunately, the data is unambiguous; during lockdown more and more residents across Greater Manchester are turning to walking and cycling for essential journeys and exercise. So, in order give people the space they need to keep safe, the only real question was ‘how soon can we act?’

“If we don’t take steps to enable people to keep travelling actively, we risk a huge spike in car use as measures are eased. Not only is it the right thing to do to protect people now, but it’s vital to meet our clean air goals and protect our NHS long term.”

29 May 2020, 08:25
Cycling UK announce 'Back on your bike' package for new and returning cyclists
London cyclists at Hyde Park Corner (copyright Britishcycling.org_.uk).jpg

To coincide with Bike Week between 6th-14th June, 'Back on your bike' is a six month package which includes £10m third-party insurance, legal assistance and one month’s cycle insurance, as well as expert cycling advice. There are also discounts to be had from the likes of Halfords, Raleigh and Cotswold Outdoor. 

Cycling UK say: "With lockdown restrictions easing and workplaces and schools reopening, the government is advising people to get on their bikes for essential journeys. The ‘Back on your bike’ package offers advice and practical assistance for new cycle commuters as well as those who have taken up recreational cycling."

The 'Back on your bike' package priced at £15, more info here

After cobbling together a few hundred quid during his student days off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story), Jack bought his first road bike at the age of 20 and has been hooked ever since. He was Staff Writer at 220 Triathlon magazine for two years before joining road.cc in 2017, and reports on all things tech as well as editing the road.cc live blog. He is also the news editor of our electric-powered sister site eBikeTips. Jack's preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking (the latter being another long story), and on Sunday afternoons he can often be found on an M5 service station indulging in his favourite post-race meal of 20 chicken nuggets, a sausage roll, caramel shortbread and a large strawberry milkshake. 

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