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Hostility towards cyclists on canal towpath


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6 minutes ago, Jim Riley said:

A couple of choice phrases. 

"How much did you pay for that bike and you didn't get a bell?" 

"Won't your Mum let you ride on the road now she's taken your stabilisers off?" - more for ordinary footpaths! 

"They've invented a cordless bell, just shout ding ding." 

 

A walking pole held horizontally under the arm sticking out backwards is a good deterrent, as is a windlass being twirled on the side the cyclist might pass. 

 

I slow down usually, though if the width allows, passing a jogger or solo walker I might call, "Bike coming by on your right, keep going" (then I pass on the left to scare them🤣). I have rather shrill horn wired to the ebike battery and still have the little ting a ling too. 

 

 

The good old days, a fag packet in the spooks rattling as you ride along

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1 minute ago, ditchcrawler said:

The good old days, a fag packet in the spooks rattling as you ride along

But the clothes pegs these days just aren't up to it. 

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I think the main problem is the unwillingness of the vast majority of cyclists to slow down or, God forbid, actually stop and give way to other towpath users. My husband uses a wheelchair and isn’t minded to move into a hedge bottom or onto a muddy verge to get out of the way ... the look of concern on the cyclist’s face is remarkable when they realise they are going to have to be the one to take evasive action! But not a single one has ever stopped, put their feet on the ground and waited for us to pass. 

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23 hours ago, Jim Riley said:

A walking pole held horizontally under the arm sticking out backwards is a good deterrent, as is a windlass being twirled on the side the cyclist might pass. 

 

Naw!

I just carry a Calder & Hebble spike across my shoulders, although tbh I do get odd comments when on the Trent & Mersey

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And in todays paper :

 

RESPONDING to Chris Ward’s letter (Hostility towards cyclists on canal towpath): a local cyclist myself for many years I still feel a frisson of self-disapproval when I’m on the towpath.

Before it became legal for cyclists to ride the towpaths of our canals I was one of the main “tut-tutters”, knowing I was in the right but helpless to do anything about it.

Then the law changed and I actually began cycling again late in life thanks to being able to use the towpath because of its flatness, decent surface (if you knew where to go) and often attractive views.

 

But even now I feel a bit guilty! And so I genuinely try to show consideration for pedestrians (who have right of way over me at all times), something too many (usually) Men-in-Lycra don’t.

I suggest to Mr Ward that the mere appearance of cyclists, who were a real rarity on what was an awfully surfaced stretch of towpath, will have come as a surprise to those who’d walked it for years undisturbed.

There will be those who resent it. I counsel patience, courtesy, use of bells, and slowing down, and to try to avoid confrontations. There are a sadly high number of cyclists who offer none of these. Let’s not join their ranks.

The walkers will accept the shared use of the towpath, and sooner rather than later, I hope. Let’s cyclists like thee and me make it easier for them to do so.

Allan Friswell

 

LETTER: Try to avoid confrontations on the canal towpath | Craven Herald

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