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Motorist pulls out on bike lane, tells Jeremy Vine to “f*** off”, drives through no-entry signs; Soudal-Quick Step pro almost taken out by quad rider during beach race; Farmer’s bizarre “Lycra-clad” cyclist rant; Hinault for MEP? + more on the live blog

It’s Tuesday, December is creeping along steadily, and Ryan Mallon (who’s still holding off putting those pesky decorations up) is back at the keyboard for another frosty edition of the live blog

SUMMARY

05 December 2023, 10:06
Motorist pulls out in front of Jeremy Vine on cycle lane (Jeremy Vine, X)
“Alexa, can you show me how many traffic violations it's possible to fit into 30 seconds of driving?” Motorist pulls out in front of Jeremy Vine on cycle lane, tells him to “f*** off”… then drives through no-entry signs

It’s December, which means only one thing – it’s time for Jeremy Vine’s Terrible London Driving Advent Calendar!

And there’s a real cracker behind today’s window…

After pulling out on the pedalling broadcaster on King Street’s cycle lane in Hammersmith – and clearly perturbed by Jezza’s toot of the bike horn and rather understated wave as he moved onto the road to avoid the car – our friendly motorist responded by shouting out the window: “Of, f*** off. Typical f***ing cyclist. I stopped, didn’t I?”

Well, that’s one way to apologise, I suppose. And surely Jeremy, you should be grateful that he stopped and didn’t let you slam into the side of his car?

Anyway, the clearly attention to detail-oriented motorist compounded matters by concluding his drive-by rant… by heading straight through no-entry signs the wrong way down a one-way road.

“Interesting that this petrosexual stops without hesitation when he’s faced with an oncoming car. When it’s a cyclist, he abuses them.”

I for one can’t wait to find out what’s behind tomorrow’s advent calendar window… Maybe Ruud Gullit sitting on a shed?

05 December 2023, 14:26
From geese to quads: Tim Merlier almost gets taken out by quad rider on final corner of beach race – but still manages to win in epic photo finish
Tim Merlier hangs on for win at Bredene beach race (Thijs Zonneveld)

You can keep your 2009 Milan-Sanremo – how’s that for an epic finish line photo?

While David Gaudu’s alternative pre-season prep took him to the icy running trails of the Massif Central, Soudal-Quick Step’s riders instead opted for the beach this weekend – but in true Belgian style, the beach in question was a snowy, freezing patch of sand in West Flanders, for a spot of cyclocross. Naturally.

With Tim Declercq and Yves Lampaert also on the start line of the Bredence Sand Race at the weekend, it was sprinter and ‘cross dabbler Tim Merlier who took the spoils, ahead of second-placed journalist/racer Thijs Zonneveld (don’t worry, your resident live blogger has no intentions of joining them anytime soon… Alright, maybe next year).

> Is that Sven and Thibau Geese? Cyclocross riders forced to avoid pair of ducks chilling out on course during World Cup race

But while it was all a bit of good fun, Merlier’s win wasn’t without its drama, however.

Just like the cyclocross riders who were forced to avoid a pair of geese that rocked up on one of the corners at Sunday’s World Cup in Flamanville, the former Belgian champion’s path to victory was almost blocked by an errant quad rider, who drove straight into Merlier’s path as he rounded the final corner, forcing him off his bike and into a desperate run and lunge to see off the late-charging journo Zonneveld.

Jeez, if that’s the drama and controversy we’re witnessing at fun pre-season events on beaches, what’s next year’s classics season going to entail?

“I was unsure whether to throw my bike or just stick it forward, and it ended up being the latter,” Merlier told Sporza after the action-packed finale.

“The finish photo showed that I won by 10 hundredths of a second.”

Merlier, who also won the beach race in De Panne a few weeks ago, added: “We can chat about it for a whole year. We are not paid for it and of course, a road race is more important than this, but it is just fun for morale. For the atmosphere. It is just more fun if you have won here.”

Classic sprinter mentality…

05 December 2023, 09:07
Tractor driver close pass
“My instincts told me there’d be trouble”: Farmers versus Cyclists? Farmers Weekly columnist launches bizarre, cliché-laden (and probably fictional) “Lycra-clad” cyclist hedge cutting rant

It’s safe to say that, in the past few years anyway, farmers have been unfairly maligned by the professional cycling world – Contador and tainted beefgate immediately springs to mind, as does Toon Aerts’ recent attempt to take on the entire Normandy dairy farming industry

> Wake up to (anything but) milk: Pro cyclists warned not to eat or drink dairy products at cyclocross race after positive doping tests

But sometimes, farmers – irritated by the sullying of their reputations by desperate, excuse-scavenging pro cyclists – get their own back by taking aim at us normal folk just riding our bikes on the roads.

Last May, for instance, a particularly foul-mouthed tirade went viral on the Farmers Against Misinformation Facebook page, which lambasted cyclists – colourfully described as people who enjoy “slipping into a Lycra suit and impaling yourself on a cock-shaped bike seat” – for not stopping to allow oncoming tractor drivers to pass.

“Do not just continue at full speed and then piss and moan as you go past because if it goes wrong you’ll end up being pressure washed off a tractor wheel,” the post said. “Cars, horse riders, and runners are capable of it, I seem to be missing something with cyclists, I presume either you don’t want to get your special bike dirty, you’re trying to beat your PB, or more than likely you’re just a complete cock in general.”

Charming.

Giro 2012 S10 Tractor (Daniele Badolato - LaPresse - RCS Sport)

> Foul-mouthed anti-cyclist rant from farmers' Facebook group goes viral

And, speaking of farmers and anti-cycling tirades, Farmers Weekly – the longstanding British farming magazine – has now decided to follow in the angry online tracks of illustrious predecessors like the Spectator, the Mail, and GB News by devoting one of its columns to a cliché-packed, almost certainly manufactured (or at least exaggerated) rant about Lycra-clad, middle-aged cyclists.

The column, penned by Welsh beef cattle farmer and opinion writer Will Evans and titled ‘The one where the cyclist meets the hedgecutter’ (coming soon to a Channel 5 Christmas movie marathon near you), inevitably begins:

Out of my peripheral vision I saw the fluorescent Lycra-clad man come hurtling round the bend. My instincts told me there’d be trouble.

Will, did your instincts also advise that you had a column deadline in a few hours, and precisely no ideas for what to include in it?

Anyway, Will continues: “Powered by pedals and righteous indignation, he flew down the road towards me, slowed, crossed over, and stopped just a few metres in front of the tractor bonnet with a face like thunder, a bulldog chewing a wasp and a smacked arse combined.”

Following that paragraph of mixed metaphor purgatory, Will goes on to detail how much he hates cutting the hedges along this particular narrow, twisting stretch of road, due to the vast number of  “speeding cars, dog walkers, and pedestrians around”.

One of those things is not like the others, but go on…

Back to the Mexican standoff I unexpectedly had on my hands.

It crossed my mind as I waited to see what he’d do next that it was a good job it wasn’t my old man on the tractor, as the bike – and possibly its rider too – would be flat by now.

The thought of this, and the absurd situation I now found myself in, made me begin to giggle.

This only seemed to anger him further, and he began furiously flinging his arms around, gesturing at the hedge, then pointing angrily at me and the road while unleashing a profanity-laced tirade.

I apologise to any cyclists who happen to be reading this (and I’ve been known to occasionally don the gear and head out for a few miles myself, by the way).

But how on earth is anyone supposed to keep a straight face when confronted with a profusely red-faced, slightly rotund middle-aged man, dressed from head to toe in figure-hugging fluorescent Lycra and a bike helmet, windmilling his arms and frothing at the mouth with rage while trying desperately not to topple over on a bike?

(Thank God that he didn’t, or I genuinely might have died laughing.)

Ah, it seems that Will is learning fast from his heroes over at the Spectator, being careful to mention that he rides a bike too, you know, while also making light of running a cyclist over with a tractor. Classic.

> Spectator accused of “deliberately confusing drivers to encourage hate towards cyclists” with yet another bizarre ‘I’m a cyclist, but…’ Highway Code column

Evans eventually concludes by claiming that his response to the cyclist’s rant – for which no reason was given in the column – involved a Travolta-esque dance routine, designed purely to wind the rider up even further.

“Perhaps he was just having a bad day,” Will concludes, with that oh-so necessary hat tip towards balance. “As my daughters seem to have an uncanny aptitude for finding multiple thorns with their bike tyres, I had some sympathy for the man.

“But those roads and pavements would be even more unsafe if the hedges weren’t cut. Who’d be a farmer, eh?”

And who’d be a cyclist? I know who could sort all this out… Who has Bernard Hinault’s number?

05 December 2023, 17:12
Peter Sagan-less TotalEnergies swap Specialized for Enve for 2024
05 December 2023, 16:27
See.Sense’s latest crowdfunding campaign for new Agile light doubles its target

Belfast-based bike technology company See.Sense has launched a new crowdfunding campaign for its latest light, the Agile, already reaching more than double the original £18,000 target with three days to go.

According to See.Sense, the light boasts 120 Lumens in the rear and 150 Lumens in the front, while retaining the company’s patented ‘reactivity’, providing heightened visibility on the road by dynamically detecting and adjusting to the cyclist’s movements, flashing brighter and faster at moments of high risk such as filtering in traffic, approaching junctions, or navigating roundabouts.

Recognised as the preferred bike light supplier to British Cycling and Cycling Ireland, See.Sense say the Agile is scheduled for dispatch in February, with early-bird backers able to purchase the Agile Rear for £35 (down from the RRP of £50) and the set for £68 (down from £100).

> Backers of See.Sense bike tracker Kickstarter project still waiting three years on

Earlier this year, one road.cc reader told us of their frustration at what they claimed was three years of waiting and “backtracking” concerning another See.Sense crowdfunding campaign, for its bike tracker Kickstarter.

However, the company told us that after pandemic-related delays, changes to the technology used, component shortages, and extensive testing, See.Sense will not ship the product until it is right and remains confident it will be well worth the wait.

05 December 2023, 15:58
By far the Frenchiest thing you’ll see today: Groupama-FDJ’s review of 2023 (featuring lots of Pinot)

Thibaut’s speech on the bus, “Take care of this team”, “Now the baton is being passed” – I’m not crying, you’re crying…

05 December 2023, 15:33
Christian Prudhomme at 2014 TdF presentation in Leeds (picture credit Welcome to Yorkshire - letouryorkshire.com)
“There will be four big champions on four different teams”: Tour director Christian Prudhomme admits he was worried about Soudal-Visma merger rumours

While it seems as if every cycling fan, rider, pundit, team boss, and their dog shared their opinion on the cycling story of the late autumn – the rumoured and ultimately unsuccessful merger between Jumbo-Visma and Soudal-Quick Step, the biggest and most drawn out ‘will they, won’t they’ saga since Ross and Rachel – Tour de France director Christian Prudhomme waited until this week to admit he was concerned about the creation of a new mega team with the firepower to turn his race into a damp procession for the foreseeable future.

In a recent interview with AS, Prudhomme said he was initially worried that the hording of three potential Tour winners – Jonas Vingegaard, Remco Evenepoel, and Primož Roglič – would have a stifling effect on the Tour, the collapse of the merger plans, and Roglič’s subsequent transfer to Bora-Hansgrohe, leaves next year’s race wide open.

Tadej Pogačar and Jonas Vingegaard, stage 15, 2023 Tour de France (Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)

(Alex Whitehead/SWpix.com)

Asked whether the constant difficulty of the 2024 Tour route – which includes a very early trip to the Alps and the Col du Galibier – could potentially lead to the race being decided long before its groundbreaking finale in Nice, Prudhomme said: “I don't think so. We’re lucky to have exceptional riders, who attack when it’s expected, but also when nobody imagines it.

“Tadej Pogačar attacked on the Champs-Elysées [at this year’s Tour]. He knew he wasn’t going to win the overall, but he was still trying.

“We had a fortnight of spectacular fighting between Pogačar and Vingegaard, and Evenepoel has said that he will make his debut in the race in 2024. What he did at the Vuelta was great: despite everything, he didn't give up.”

Roglic and Evenepoel, Vuelta a Espana 2023 stage 8 (@Cxcling Creative Agency)

(Cycling Creative Agency)

He continued: “What did worry me a bit were the rumours about the Jumbo and Soudal merger, with Jonas and Remco in the same team. But instead, there will be four big champions – Pogačar, Vingegaard, Roglič and Evenepoel – on four different teams, which could make for a really good Tour de France.”

Psst, nobody tell Geraint Thomas about Prudhomme’s ‘four big champions’ comment…

05 December 2023, 14:58
More coppers on borrowed bikes

Northamptonshire Police has praised the “quick-thinking” and “good old fashioned policing” of one of the force’s officers after a cycling copper, who borrowed a bicycle from a bystander, set off after a drug dealer on two wheels, before ramming them to the ground, arresting the suspect, and ultimately helping to see them jailed.

Police officer borrows bike (Northamptonshire Police)

Read more: > Quick-thinking police officer borrows bike off passer-by to chase down and arrest fleeing drug dealer

05 December 2023, 13:58
If it rides like a road bike, and also like a gravel bike, what is it? Cervélo’s first-ever e-bike!
05 December 2023, 13:22
“They did warn me it was going to get cold”: Groupama-FDJ’s David Gaudu finishes second at legendary 78km icy trail running relay race

So it seems that David Gaudu took one look at Andreas Leknessund’s -24 training ride in Norway (complete with frozen eyelashes) and thought: “Hold my ice cold beer”.

Because the hipster’s favourite French rider prepared for his Groupama-FDJ team’s Spanish training camp this week by taking part on Sunday in the ASICS SaintéLyon, an iconic two-man relay trail running event that covers 78km of epic, freezing cold, snow-covered hills, featuring 2,000m of elevation, between Saint-Étienne and Lyon.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by @david_gaudu

The 27-year-old, no stranger to trail running having taken part in events in his home region of Brittany over the last few winters, joined forces with friend and former French national trail running champion Alexandre Fine for the event.

Setting out in the early hours of Sunday morning, Gaudu – who said his aim was to “not leave Alex too far from the lead at the relay point” – suffered a fall at the start of his 34km stint, but recovered well enough to ensure the pair were sitting in fifth at the handover, before Fine’s blistering run saw them secure the second spot on the podium, nine minutes down on the winning duo, Eloi Guigon and Augustin Kerhardy.

Not too shabby at all, and a strong addition to our ‘cyclists who run’ list

“[It was] a challenge between friends,” Gaudu told L'Équipe of his reasons for getting into snowy trail running.

“It gets me off the bike, it’s good for my head because I’ve always loved running, and it works the muscles a little. Thibaut [Pinot] always did cross-country skiing in winter, it's his passion. For me, it’s the trail!

“I think trail running is the closest thing to cycling in terms of effort. It’s a fight against yourself, like in a mountain pass. There are adversaries, of course, but above all, it’s about pushing your limits, you only rely on yourself.”

> Cyclists who run: From Pidcock and MVDP to Yates, Ovett, and, naturally, Chris Froome

And it seems that Gaudu isn’t through with pushing himself to the limit this winter, having already eyed up the 165km Diagonale des Fous trail running race on Reunion Island and the frightening 171km UTMB event around Mont Blanc.

That’s unless Marc Madiot has a word at this week’s FDJ camp, of course…

05 December 2023, 12:50
Back to the Future

‘Can you believe all the things these cyclists are demanding? Even things that were deemed standard back when Jim Callaghan was in charge! Pah!’

05 December 2023, 12:28
Andy Burnham Bee Bikes Manchester (Andy Burnham/Twitter)
Active travel campaigners “disappointed” at apparent bikes on trams trial delay in Greater Manchester

Cycling and walking campaigners say they are disappointed by Transport for Greater Manchester’s decision to delay a pilot scheme enabling people to take bikes on trams, despite mayor Andy Burnham promising that the trial would be in place by the end of 2023.

While folding bikes are currently permitted on Metrolink trams, unfolded bikes are not allowed (though they are permitted on trains). As part of his 2021 election manifesto, Burnham committed to introducing trials that would allow dogs and bikes on trams, with dogs being permitted to travel on Greater Manchester’s tram network from August this year.

And at an event organised by Walk Ride Greater Manchester in January, the Labour mayor reiterated that the bike trial would commence “by the end of this year”.

“I made a commitment that we would have it, we said we’d do it with dogs and we did do that last year and that’s now in,” Burnham told the event.

“I think it was a manifesto commitment from me last time, and I think it wouldn’t be right to not deliver it in this term. By the end of this year, the pilot will have started.” 

> Greater Manchester Mayor Andy Burnham defends plans for a new segregated cycle path, saying drivers currently dominate the roads

However, with no signs of the pilot in sight as 2023 draws to a close, Transport for Greater Manchester has now confirmed that the trial will not take place this year.

“We are currently reviewing proposals for a pilot of non-folding bikes on trams,” a spokesperson said. “An update will be brought to the Bee Network Committee in the New Year.”

“We are disappointed to hear that the bikes on trams trial promised by the end of this year has been delayed,” Walk Ride Greater Manchester’s Cazz Ward told the Oldham Times upon hearing the news.

“We again reaffirm our position that bikes on trams must be trialled in order to facilitate the Bee Network's multimodal transport ambitions. The trial needs to be on an existing line with members of the public.”

05 December 2023, 11:58
Bernard Hinault, 1980 world road race championships
What happened to the Badger? Bernard Hinault backs out of plans to stand for ‘Rural Alliance’ at next year’s European elections – due to fear of social media backlash

While we’re on the subject of farmers and cyclists, probably the most famous farming/cycling crossover of all time, Bernard Hinault, says he won’t be standing for election to the European parliament next year – because the five-time Tour de France winner is wary of the negative reaction he’ll receive on social media.

Yes, you read that right.

According to France Inter, Hinault was approached to join the potential-MEP list of the Rural Alliance, a new loosely-based political coalition organised by Willy Schraen, the head of the National Federation of Hunters in France, and advisor to President Emmanuel Macron on rural matters.

Bernard Hinault has a pint at the Robin Hood pub (picture Simon Wilkinson, SWPix.com)

[Simon Wilkinson/SWPix.com]

The Alliance, which aims to appeal to a broad spectrum of rural voters, and not just France’s one million-odd active hunters, also includes former French international rugby player Louis Picamoles.

Its policies appear to be based around current disgruntlement in the countryside over fuel prices, the lack of 3G coverage in certain regions, immigration, environmental policies, and the EU itself, while Schraen’s support for Macron could also see the group emerge as a challenger to Marine Le Pen’s National Rally.

However, despite forging his reputation on a stubborn and innate desire to fight anything placed in front of him (from Tour rivals and teammates to striking dockyard workers and podium crashers), it appears that Hinault has finally met his match – in the form of social media.

When contacted by France Inter, the 69-year-old confirmed that he had initially joined the Rural Alliance list before throwing in the towel, citing his fear of an “avalanche” of negative online reaction.

Le Blaireau – what happened to you?

05 December 2023, 11:30
Cycling campaign group bemoans “huge disappointment” as cycle lane and Dutch-style roundabout plans scrapped

A cycling campaign group in Harrogate has called the withdrawal of plans to build safe cycling infrastructure as part of an £11.2 million ‘Station Gateway’ project, including the construction of a Dutch-style roundabout, a “huge disappointment” with “the worthwhile elements” for cycling now “stripped out of the scheme”.

North Yorkshire Council has pulled the plug on many of the infrastructure proposals – after a judicial review launched by commercial developer Hornbeam Park Developments temporarily halted the work – with cycle lanes, a reduction to the width of the road, and plans for a Dutch-style roundabout now scrapped permanently.

Harrogate Station Gateway scheme (North Yorkshire Council)

Read more: >  Cycling campaign group bemoans “huge disappointment” as cycle lane and Dutch-style roundabout plans scrapped

05 December 2023, 10:56
Want a bike from the local recycling centre? Well, you have to drive: Recycling centre tells customers looking to purchase a bike that they can only access the shop by car

Way back in February (I know), we reported on the live blog that Essex County Council was accused of introducing “discriminatory” and “car-brained” measures against cyclists and people who use cycles as mobility aids, after the local authority announced that, as part of a new trial booking system for recycling centres in the county, people cycling to the skip would be asked to leave their bike at the gates.

Now, over in Surrey, another cyclist has criticised the “frustrating” experience of using the local tip without a car, as she sought to purchase a bike for her eight-year-old child from the recycling centre’s shop – only to be told that it wasn’t possible to access the shop on foot.

“Our car is broken. So I'm experiencing how frustrating it is for non-car users where we live,” Earlswood-based Rachel wrote on Twitter at the weekend.

“Earlier, we decided to walk to Earlswood Community Recycling Shop at Earlswood dump to buy our eight-year=old  a new bike. Only to be informed that you can only access the shop if you come by car...

“Feeling very frustrated, I put a post on my Instagram story to see if any car users could help. And hallelujah, I get a reply from the lovely Angie, who came to our rescue and drove us in. We popped in, bought a bike for £40 and walked back out with a very happy child.

“But my question is this: How does a recycling shop that only caters for car users exist? Is there not scope to include a pathway entrance to get to the shop? I queried this with the recycling shop and they said people mostly get cabs there!

“It was such a shock to be told no because we didn't have a car. So backwards!”

05 December 2023, 10:45
The random pro cycling content compilation video you’ve all been waiting for

Grab a mid-morning coffee, sit back, and enjoy…

Ryan joined road.cc in December 2021 and since then has kept the site’s readers and listeners informed and enthralled (well at least occasionally) on news, the live blog, and the road.cc Podcast. After boarding a wrong bus at the world championships and ruining a good pair of jeans at the cyclocross, he now serves as road.cc’s senior news writer. Before his foray into cycling journalism, he wallowed in the equally pitiless world of academia, where he wrote a book about Victorian politics and droned on about cycling and bikes to classes of bored students (while taking every chance he could get to talk about cycling in print or on the radio). He can be found riding his bike very slowly around the narrow, scenic country lanes of Co. Down.

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57 comments

Avatar
cmedred | 7 months ago
8 likes

The Farmer's Weekly story reads like the "profusely red-faced, slightly rotund middle-aged man, dressed from head to toe in figure-hugging fluorescent Lycra and a bike helmet'' should get some sort of award for balance if he truly was "windmilling his arms and frothing at the mouth with rage while trying desperately not to topple over on a bike.'' That is the description of one hell of a track stand. I can't last long with my hands on the bars. How many can keep it upright while windmilling and frothing? OK, Peter Sagan, maybe; Danny MaCaskill. But how many "slightly rotund, middle-aged men'' can do it? 

Avatar
Rendel Harris replied to cmedred | 7 months ago
4 likes

I remember a story some years ago where a motorist claimed that a cyclist was riding alongside her car at "nearly 25 miles an hour", banging on the window with one hand, making obscene gestures with the other hand, and at the same time kicking her door. It was before I started reading road.cc so I don't know if it was on here but I do recall there were lots of comments on the local newspaper website where I read it saying that the cyclist should be signed up by a pro team as a domestique!

Avatar
chrisonabike replied to Rendel Harris | 7 months ago
4 likes

25mph cruise speed?  Sounds like Nigel's celebrated courtesy and politeness finally reached breaking point...

Avatar
Yapaxi | 7 months ago
1 like

About "Motorist pulls out in front of Jeremy Vine on cycle lane"... Well, to be honest, it looks more like the cyclist overreacted and put himself in even more danger by not stopping. Motorist did something that quite often happens even in much more cycling-friendly cities like Amsterdam. Also, the road is wet and covered with leafs but he releases one hand, looks elsewhere and cares more about telling the Motorist that he is not right than about safety.

Avatar
shaunyboytellem replied to Yapaxi | 7 months ago
10 likes

You're joking. The car doesn't stop at the giveaway and blocks 80% of the cycle lane. It's not an over reaction to be upset when someone puts your life in danger

Avatar
Yapaxi replied to shaunyboytellem | 7 months ago
1 like

Being upset does not sound like a good reason to put yourself in more danger. In Amsterdam, things like that happen to me once per month or two and I am annoyed every time it happens, but the first thing to do is always to stop and then, in necessary, express indignation. It never even crossed my mind to move in the front of a car that any second is about to move forward and turn, (unless, in some cases, I have clear eye contact with the driver). The worst can happen to a driver\car is a fine, the worst can happen to a cyclist is broken legs and ruined bike. It is just not worth the risk. 

Avatar
tootsie323 replied to Yapaxi | 7 months ago
0 likes

But he didn't. The car stopped, he rode around it.

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hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
5 likes

Re: the recycling centre only allowing access via car

I'm surprised someone doesn't raise a discrimination claim against them as surely that's discriminating against a disability if someone is not allowed to drive due to a medical condition.

Avatar
HoarseMann replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
11 likes

It's the same where I live, you need a car to access the recycling centre. Walking in is strictly forbidden, yet strangely it's ok to get out and walk around the skips once you've run the gauntlet of the ANPR automated barrier.

The council argue that it's not discrimiating, because you can arrange for a 'bulky waste collection' from your house. Although you have to pay an undisclosed fee for it and they don't accept some waste that the recycling centre would take. They won't collect a car battery for instance. So if you found yourself in need of recycling a car battery, but sans car, I assume you'd have to chuck it in a ditch (I'm basing this on observing the contents of the ditches local to me).

 

Avatar
hawkinspeter replied to HoarseMann | 7 months ago
1 like

HoarseMann wrote:

It's the same where I live, you need a car to access the recycling centre. Walking in is strictly forbidden, yet strangely it's ok to get out and walk around the skips once you've run the gauntlet of the ANPR automated barrier.

The council argue that it's not discrimiating, because you can arrange for a 'bulky waste collection' from your house. Although you have to pay an undisclosed fee for it and they don't accept some waste that the recycling centre would take. They won't collect a car battery for instance. So if you found yourself in need of recycling a car battery, but sans car, I assume you'd have to chuck it in a ditch (I'm basing this on observing the contents of the ditches local to me).

They used to only allow motorised vehicles in our local recycling centre too, but I think they changed it a couple of years ago. It was probably around the time that there was a huge problem with a long line of cars waiting to get into the dump that were blocking local businesses. They did change it to alternate days for even and odd number plates, but I think the current situation is that you book a time slot. Of course, letting in the occasional bike can only help the traffic congestion and should be more convenient for small disposals.

Avatar
IanMSpencer | 7 months ago
15 likes

A fair number of commenters blaming Vine's lack of awareness for causing the problem. Seemed to me he would have been able to stop, but what if that car had arrived 3 seconds later?

One of the earliest top tips I learnt on the advanced driving course I did was to approach junctions slowly to give yourself time to look. Typically then you can adjust your approach to a give way and account for approaching vehicles, at roundabouts especially it gives more chance of interleaving with other traffic.

Our over excitable friend has approached at high speed and clearly is only considering looking for cars. He is also unable to see as the street furniture is partially obscuring his view. This is of course a reason for the driver to approach the junction with more care, but it seems our driver has gone for the "I looked, I didn't see anything so there can't be anything there" approach.

Twitter has declared that shit driving is par for the course so it must be the cyclist's fault for expecting to ride down the road without planning for incompetent lunatics.

Avatar
bikeman01 replied to IanMSpencer | 7 months ago
4 likes

IanMSpencer wrote:

One of the earliest top tips I learnt on the advanced driving course I did was to approach junctions slowly to give yourself time to look. ..

Yes you could ride cautiously past every side road and double your journey time.

Avatar
HoldingOn replied to bikeman01 | 7 months ago
7 likes

I think he means approaching a junction where you have to  Give Way, rather than every side road you pass.

When I was learning to drive, I was told to treat other drivers like they were homicidal maniacs. Something that is becoming increasing appropriate as I  interact with vehicles while cycling.

Avatar
Sriracha replied to HoldingOn | 7 months ago
7 likes

I think the advice these days should be to expect that every driver is distracted by their mobile phone. Honestly, in town it's not so far from the truth (saw five today on my walk home - that's only counting the ones where I could see the screen myself - plenty others driving by with their eyes in their lap)

Avatar
Backladder replied to Sriracha | 7 months ago
2 likes

Sriracha wrote:

 Honestly, in town it's not so far from the truth

You should visit the countryside, I can't remember the last time I saw a tractor with the driver not on the phone!

Avatar
IanMK | 7 months ago
6 likes

"Alexa, can you show me how many traffic violations it's possible to fit into 30 seconds of driving?"

Here's one I like to call "4 failures, 1 overtake". All in one manoeuvre. Resulted in a course.

https://youtu.be/jRBk268FBvM

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nordog | 7 months ago
7 likes

I was a farm worker many years ago riding bikes to work & fetching cows for milking on said bike, a Falcon & since my retirement cycled thousands of miles, mainly Wiltshire and I would like the farmers to cut the hedge more often not just the lower grass bank that the Council do just twice a year because of the butterflies etc, briers & thin bush branches are the main problems. But these hedge cutting machines come without the deflectors that can guide the cuttings back into the hedge, which is wrong they should be part of the machine at the first cost of purchase. In  my pre-teens, I with my uncle used to trim the very narrow local lanes on the edge of Dartmoor with just a sharp sickle and a hazel stick and clean up the road as we went,

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brooksby | 7 months ago
9 likes

COP28, eh? 

Quote:

Record number of fossil fuel lobbyists get access to Cop28 climate talks

UAE-hosted summit admitted at least 2,456 people affiliated with oil and gas industries, analysis finds

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/dec/05/record-number-of-fos...

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hawkinspeter replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
9 likes

brooksby wrote:

COP28, eh? 

Quote:

Record number of fossil fuel lobbyists get access to Cop28 climate talks

UAE-hosted summit admitted at least 2,456 people affiliated with oil and gas industries, analysis finds

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2023/dec/05/record-number-of-fos...

It's truly disgusting how we have fossil fuel interests dominating over the interests of people around the world. People who decry the activities of Just Stop Oil in favour of political protests are not seeing the bigger picture. We have unelected politicians (e.g. Sunak) that are just pushing forward with destroying the planet for profit whilst they can.

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levestane replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
3 likes

Maybe it is good to get the fossil fuel lobby into public view so folk know who they are. This may be the only tangible outcome of COP28

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hawkinspeter replied to levestane | 7 months ago
4 likes

levestane wrote:

Maybe it is good to get the fossil fuel lobby into public view so folk know who they are. This may be the only tangible outcome of COP28

It'd make more sense to me to not let them be responsible for running our international decision making on how to move away from fossil fuels.

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brooksby replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
3 likes

hawkinspeter wrote:

It's truly disgusting how we have fossil fuel interests dominating over the interests of people around the world. People who decry the activities of Just Stop Oil in favour of political protests are not seeing the bigger picture. We have unelected politicians (e.g. Sunak) that are just pushing forward with destroying the planet for profit whilst they can.

IAF it was a bit of a joke allowing a major petrostate to host COP28 in the first place...  And don't get me started on the comments that have been linked (edit) attributed to the chair.

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tootsie323 replied to brooksby | 7 months ago
3 likes

Having the UAE host COP28 is a bit like having [insert any 70s BBC DJ here] babysit your kids.

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eburtthebike | 7 months ago
9 likes

I apologise to any cyclists who happen to be reading this (and I’ve been known to occasionally don the gear and head out for a few miles myself, by the way).

Oh dear, nothing says "I really don't know what I'm talking about" more than the "I'm a cyclist myself, but....." explanation for your ignorance Will.

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mctrials23 | 7 months ago
5 likes

I mean, as much as we are all cyclists, there is a kernel of truth to some of the whinges about cyclists. There are a small set of us that take our position as vulnerable road users to mean that everyone should accomodate us completely and we shouldn't have to lift a finger to apply the brake. 

I have plenty of shitty encounters with motorists but some cyclists seem to have their bar set incredibly low for rage inducing incidents. Mine tends to sit somewhere around "that was really dangerous" rather than "you did something you shouldn't and I had to slow down or stop". 

No you shouldn't have to stop because someone has pulled out from a side road and blocked the road. Yes it would be nice if farmers/the council cleaned the roads after they have cut the hedges but in the grand scheme of things they aren't very important. Annoying yes, important? Not really. 

There is some vague merit to some comments saying that cyclists need to calm down at times. 

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stueymcc | 7 months ago
14 likes

A farmer pulled out on me during a 50mile TT. I stopped between the tractor and trailer and said something like "oh do be careful you could have killed me." His answer..."No one will care, you are dressed like a prick." I did have pink overshoes on and a pointy hat, so he was probably right.

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essexian | 7 months ago
5 likes

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2023/dec/05/could-you-pass-englan...

Ten out of 14 correct... I got two wrong regarding the cost of driving tests (I think it was 25 bob when I took my test) and with regards to overtaking.... being a BMW driver, I never do that anyway.

Interested in your scores....

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hawkinspeter replied to essexian | 7 months ago
4 likes

essexian wrote:

https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2023/dec/05/could-you-pass-englan...

Ten out of 14 correct... I got two wrong regarding the cost of driving tests (I think it was 25 bob when I took my test) and with regards to overtaking.... being a BMW driver, I never do that anyway.

Interested in your scores....

I got 11 out of 14 correct, but some of them were lucky guesses - I'm not a driver so have never taken the test for real.

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SimoninSpalding replied to hawkinspeter | 7 months ago
7 likes

Are you responsible for writing some of the answers:

14.You come across a sign which is a circle with a red border and other than that it is completely white. What does it mean?
The road is closed ahead
No vehicles allowed past this point
National speed limits now apply
Danger – invisible squirrels

 

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hawkinspeter replied to SimoninSpalding | 7 months ago
0 likes

SimoninSpalding wrote:

Are you responsible for writing some of the answers:

14.You come across a sign which is a circle with a red border and other than that it is completely white. What does it mean?
The road is closed ahead
No vehicles allowed past this point
National speed limits now apply
Danger – invisible squirrels

 

I couldn't possibly comment

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