Vive la Revolution

London sometimes seems a very long way away from Dumfries – and never more so when you read about the announcement from the mayor for almost £1 billion to be spent on cycling – including a really world-class cross-city route for cyclists, and a network of direct, safe routes that follow the major tube and bus routes.

Revolutions have been announced in the past, but this looks like the real deal, if it comes off. And as London forges ahead, it looks as if Scotland is going to be falling ever further behind. I was recently in Copenhagen – a city every bit as cold and forbidding as anywhere in Scotland in winter – and even on a raw February day it was packed with bikes, all of them cycling on routes like the one planned for London, safely away from the traffic. All across Europe, from Stockholm to Seville and from London to Berlin, cities are being transformed and real investment is being put into the only form of transport apart from walking that makes places healthier, cleaner, quieter and happier. Meanwhile in Scotland we have to fight for every penny of spending on cycling, we have a transport minister who wants to ‘modernise’ by building more motorways, and we can’t even get our bike paths cleared and gritted in the winter.

That’s why we support Pedal on Parliament, and will be joining them to protest the lack of investment in safe cycling in this country. We want to gather as many folk as possible from Dumfries and Galloway who cycle, or who would like to cycle, or who would like to see their families cycling in safety, to join the mass ride on Sunday 19th May (note the new date) on the Scottish Parliament. It will take a bit of organising, especially on a Sunday, but we think it’s important.

If you’d like to come, and want help organising transport, or can help – contact us – either by emailing cyclingdumfries AT gmail DOT com – or just leave a comment on this post. Or come along on Thursday 14th March to the Coach & Horses at 6pm to help work out our plans in person.

Pedal on Parliament: Just a ‘wee protest’ then?

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3 Comments

Filed under Events, News

3 responses to “Vive la Revolution

  1. Hi Sally, The news from london now makes the POP manifesto looks a bit pathetic compared with Boris’s vision. He’s aiming for 10% of journeys to be by bike-sounds familiar, of course! But unlike our Scottish CAP looks like London, given real investment, could even meet the target!? Nontheless not to be discouarged about Scottish politicians I’m still hoping to go to POP on 19th May. As for 14th March, an important event in Langholm is taking place: a talk by Andy Wightman, author of Who Owns Scotland (and How They Got It), and The Poor Had No Lawyers in the Crown Hotel.Langholm.

  2. Wait a minute-just seen the photo on the blog presumably of the last POP-thousands of people on bikes wearing helmets! If this is mandatory or even advisory or promoted, I wont be going! I see Boris wants to ””de-Lycrafy cycling and see more of the kind of cyclists you see in Holland…”. I’m up for that!

  3. sallyhinchcliffe

    Hi Bill – of course they’re not mandatory. People can wear whatever they like to POP although the law – and Edinburgh’s climate) suggest’s they should wear *something*). The helmets and hi vis do reflect the conditions of cycling on the roads today – I too would love to de-lycrafy cycling, but in my opinion it takes the conditions of Holland to get the sort of environment where most people feel comfortable cycling in their everyday clothes – and letting their kids do it too.

    If you look at the POP site you’ll see that we don’t give any suggestion of what people should wear. They don’t even need to come on a bike…

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