London has been a hive of bike lane related activity recently and I have to say, it’s made a difference now that things are finally up and running and the roadworks are out of the way. I regularly use the now (nearly!) fully segregated lanes that have been built into CS7 and its offshoots (that’s the main drag from Clapham to the City), especially around Stockwell and on Blackfriars Road, and I have to say, for someone who was fed up of weaving in and out of traffic and getting everywhere at a snail’s pace, I now don’t have to! It’s also made it a heck of a lot safer for less confident riders and as long as people use them properly, they will (hopefully) continue to flourish and encourage more people to get on their bikes.
But as with all these things, there are people who still don’t use them correctly and it is time for me to have a bit of a rant about who should get out of my bike lane!
(Note I’m mainly talking about the completely separate bits of the superhighways but a lot of these apply equally well to those annoying shiny blue sections of the road that drivers seem to forget exist)
1. People on scooters. YOU ARE AN ADULT BEHAVE LIKE ONE. Even worse is that you can now get scooters with a mini suitcase attached (eyeroll). Go scoot on the pavement or something.
2. Pedestrians. IT’S NOT A FOOTPATH. IT HAS PICTURES OF LITTLE BIKES ON IT! Also stop stepping out into it without looking as it will hurt if and when I crash into you. It’s like a road but for vehicles you can’t hear as well. And please stop being permanently attached to your phones.
3. Runners. But only when it’s prime commuter time and you are acting like a fool and wearing headphones and oblivious to cyclists around you. People like me who use it nicely at lunchtime when it’s quiet and run towards the flow of traffic and get back onto the pavement should totally be allowed.
4. People who are bad at cycling. Before you all get grumpy, I don’t mean slow, I mean genuinely incompetent i.e. unable to cycle in a straight line, don’t indicate, indicate but pull out in front of you without looking, overtake 3 abreast when there are people coming the other way etc etc. Just because we have a special lane doesn’t mean you can be a moron.
5. People on weird contraptions holding umbrellas. Like a Segway minus the stick part. It probably has a name. I just googled “moving wheel commute” and apparently it is called a solowheel (don’t worry, not affiliate linking you to these mad contraptions, I just wanted to show you what I meant…)
6. People cycling the wrong way !!!!
7. People who don’t obey rules. These were put in to make cycling safer – jumping red lights DOESNT MAKE IT SAFER YOU HAVE JUST CREATED THE PROBLEM AGAIN.
8. Deliveroo cyclists who cycle in the middle of the entire lane whilst on their phones and their boxes of food make them really wide loads and hard to get around and make me feel hungry. (I’ve realised the main point to this one is that it’s because they make me hungry that I don’t like them there, they aren’t all annoying)
9. Men who get really annoyed when I overtake them. Le sigh.
10. Drivers who cut across them without looking. I thought I was safe from you! Unfortunately not all of the intersecting roads have traffic light control, so you just need to pay attention to the odd madman…but that is better than having to deal with hundreds of them!
So there you have it. A quick rant over and done with and I’ve got a few of today’s stresses of my chest. Only to go back to it again tomorrow. Happy cycling!