Donnachadh McCarthy writes…
Wow - some positives from the meeting with the Lib Dem Minister of State (Department for Transport) Baroness Susan Kramer - see article about that by clicking HERE.
I have received a letter from Robert Goodwill, who is the Tory “Minister” for cycling (aka Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport).
(UPDATE: click for PRESS RELEASE and LETTER TO POLICE; or to see the MEDIA COVERAGE including the ACPO police response)
Whilst the letter covers only a few of the cycling safety issues I raised with Susan, it does cover my request for ministerial clarification on the guidance for implementation of the fixed penalty fines for pavement cycling.
This follows my being told by Operation Safeway police that they had been instructed by their senior officers to ignore the guidance and to implement the letter of the law instead.
The GOOD news is the minister re-endorsed the original guidance by the Minister who introduced the fines, Paul Boateng which was :
“‘The introduction of the fixed penalty is not aimed at responsible cyclists who sometimes feel obliged to use the pavement out of fear of the traffic, and who show consideration to other pavement users when doing so. Chief police officers, who are responsible for enforcement, acknowledge that many cyclists, particularly children and young people, are afraid to cycle in the road… sensitivity and careful use of police discretion is required “
This was one of the issues the Vauxhall Cross Demo was addressing.
He also gives a potential positive to our suggestion that the DfT should be monitoring what local councils are doing on cycling, so that the data can be examined and compared and badly performing councils identified and held to account.
I have attached the letter (click on the thumbnail to see the pdf copy).
Yes We Can!
3 thoughts on “Cycling Minister reaffirms guidance to police regarding pavement cycling”
“‘The introduction of the fixed penalty is not aimed at responsible cyclists who sometimes feel obliged to use the pavement out of fear of the traffic, and who show consideration to other pavement users when doing so. Chief police officers, who are responsible for enforcement, acknowledge that many cyclists, particularly children and young people, are afraid to cycle in the road… sensitivity and careful use of police discretion is required “”
well they should have written it so that only those riding recklessly on footpaths were breaking that law… not leaving it to discretion.
Once on the books, a law is a law and they’ll do their damnedest to use it in all situations they can apply it to… We all saw what happened with RIPA (which was intended for anti-terrorism uses) being used to track down dog owners and find out if people were really living in school catchment areas…
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