Councillor calls on cyclists to remain on the road

Councillor Chris Edge thinks cyclists must be more considerate

Councillor Chris Edge thinks cyclists must be more considerate

First published in News

An independent councillor has lashed out at cyclists who "terrorise pedestrians" by riding on footpaths.

Counciilor Chris Edge, who represents Dundonald ward, said: "A lot of people get concerned about people cycling on footpaths, especially the elderly.

"There's a balance between children cycling on the footpaths which is sensible and practical but at what age should they go on the roads? Roads should be for cyclists.

"I was at the bottom of Hartfield Road the other day with another elderly gentleman when a cyclist came round the corner on the footpath and expected us to get out of the way."

Coun Edge wants Merton police to prevent cyclists riding on footpaths and host cycling proficiency courses for adults.

He said: "People seem to think they have the right of way regardless of what everyone else is doing. I'm not saying motorists aren't also responsible but I've seen cyclists ride on the inside of the road when people are turning left.

"The law is against people cycling on the footpaths unless it is designated as dual."

Merton Council is one of eight London boroughs shortlisted by the Mayor of London to become a "Mini Holland" with a network of cycle routes planned across the borough.

Coun Edge said: "We are not Holland, we haven't built a public area so we have designated cycle tracks on our roads.

"I'm a cyclist myself, but just because they don't feel safe on the roads doesn't mean that they should terrorise pedestrians."

Comments (10)

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8:04am Sat 18 Jan 14

Tobermory says...

Cycling on a footpath is not illegal unless there is a sign to prohibit it, if the Cllr cannot get his facts right its not surprising some cyclists get confused.
Its cycling on a footway alongside a carriageway that is illegal, a footway and a footpath are not the same thing maybe the Councillor needs to brush up on his traffic law before lecturing people.
Will the Councillor also be calling for pedestrians to be fined for walking on cycle tracks and cycle paths as this is just as dangerous and causes just as many accidents.
I would be interested to see how many accidents requiring hospital care for pedestrians resulting from cyclists on the footway compared to cyclists visiting hospital from accidents with cars? I suspect the problem of cycle vs pedestrian accidents is far less than cycle vs motor vehicle. I think that more pedestrian accidents are probably caused by poor maintence of footways by his Council than by collisions with cyclists.
Cycling on a footpath is not illegal unless there is a sign to prohibit it, if the Cllr cannot get his facts right its not surprising some cyclists get confused. Its cycling on a footway alongside a carriageway that is illegal, a footway and a footpath are not the same thing maybe the Councillor needs to brush up on his traffic law before lecturing people. Will the Councillor also be calling for pedestrians to be fined for walking on cycle tracks and cycle paths as this is just as dangerous and causes just as many accidents. I would be interested to see how many accidents requiring hospital care for pedestrians resulting from cyclists on the footway compared to cyclists visiting hospital from accidents with cars? I suspect the problem of cycle vs pedestrian accidents is far less than cycle vs motor vehicle. I think that more pedestrian accidents are probably caused by poor maintence of footways by his Council than by collisions with cyclists. Tobermory
  • Score: 6

8:26am Sat 18 Jan 14

Mordenman says...

So in a selfish fit of pique this councillor resigns the Tory whip and then has second thoughts. Then wonders how to revive his profile. Pathetic
So in a selfish fit of pique this councillor resigns the Tory whip and then has second thoughts. Then wonders how to revive his profile. Pathetic Mordenman
  • Score: 9

1:04pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Hugh Dunnit says...

Arguing about the difference between a footpath and a footway is just tilting at windmills. Just obey the law - why is that so difficult ?
Arguing about the difference between a footpath and a footway is just tilting at windmills. Just obey the law - why is that so difficult ? Hugh Dunnit
  • Score: -6

3:50pm Sat 18 Jan 14

alphabeti says...

As a regular bike commuter doing about 100 miles per week...Its about common sense. If you want to ride on a pavement/ footpath then show a bit of respect and consideration for others. If you want to ride quickly then get on the road.
As a regular bike commuter doing about 100 miles per week...Its about common sense. If you want to ride on a pavement/ footpath then show a bit of respect and consideration for others. If you want to ride quickly then get on the road. alphabeti
  • Score: 0

8:57pm Sat 18 Jan 14

alphabeti says...

Tobermory wrote:
Cycling on a footpath is not illegal unless there is a sign to prohibit it, if the Cllr cannot get his facts right its not surprising some cyclists get confused.
Its cycling on a footway alongside a carriageway that is illegal, a footway and a footpath are not the same thing maybe the Councillor needs to brush up on his traffic law before lecturing people.
Will the Councillor also be calling for pedestrians to be fined for walking on cycle tracks and cycle paths as this is just as dangerous and causes just as many accidents.
I would be interested to see how many accidents requiring hospital care for pedestrians resulting from cyclists on the footway compared to cyclists visiting hospital from accidents with cars? I suspect the problem of cycle vs pedestrian accidents is far less than cycle vs motor vehicle. I think that more pedestrian accidents are probably caused by poor maintence of footways by his Council than by collisions with cyclists.
The two biggest cycling related things that wind me up are:

1) High-viz clad nodders on hybrids getting irate when someone strays the wrong side of the white line on a shared use path.

2) Triathletes.
[quote][p][bold]Tobermory[/bold] wrote: Cycling on a footpath is not illegal unless there is a sign to prohibit it, if the Cllr cannot get his facts right its not surprising some cyclists get confused. Its cycling on a footway alongside a carriageway that is illegal, a footway and a footpath are not the same thing maybe the Councillor needs to brush up on his traffic law before lecturing people. Will the Councillor also be calling for pedestrians to be fined for walking on cycle tracks and cycle paths as this is just as dangerous and causes just as many accidents. I would be interested to see how many accidents requiring hospital care for pedestrians resulting from cyclists on the footway compared to cyclists visiting hospital from accidents with cars? I suspect the problem of cycle vs pedestrian accidents is far less than cycle vs motor vehicle. I think that more pedestrian accidents are probably caused by poor maintence of footways by his Council than by collisions with cyclists.[/p][/quote]The two biggest cycling related things that wind me up are: 1) High-viz clad nodders on hybrids getting irate when someone strays the wrong side of the white line on a shared use path. 2) Triathletes. alphabeti
  • Score: -6

11:49pm Sat 18 Jan 14

Tobermory says...

Hugh Dunnit wrote:
Arguing about the difference between a footpath and a footway is just tilting at windmills. Just obey the law - why is that so difficult ?
The difference is one is legal to ride on and one is not surely that is not hard to understand either? The Councillor is requesting people stop riding on footpaths, which he claims is against the law when its clearly not. If a supposedly educated man like a Councillor cannot tell what is legal and what isn't how is Joe Public?? I will carry on riding legally on footpaths as long as I like and if the Councillor objects then he can get his chums at the Council to pass a few byelaws to prohibit it.
[quote][p][bold]Hugh Dunnit[/bold] wrote: Arguing about the difference between a footpath and a footway is just tilting at windmills. Just obey the law - why is that so difficult ?[/p][/quote]The difference is one is legal to ride on and one is not surely that is not hard to understand either? The Councillor is requesting people stop riding on footpaths, which he claims is against the law when its clearly not. If a supposedly educated man like a Councillor cannot tell what is legal and what isn't how is Joe Public?? I will carry on riding legally on footpaths as long as I like and if the Councillor objects then he can get his chums at the Council to pass a few byelaws to prohibit it. Tobermory
  • Score: 3

11:48am Sun 19 Jan 14

Hugh Dunnit says...

As someone who uses footpaths, footways and public rights of way all the time, I can assure you that it is illegal. And if you continue to ride your bike illegally at me on a footpath/footway in the usual 'get out of my way' aggressive manner of most cyclists then I will reserve the right to shove a stick in your spokes. Bloody cyclists want it both ways don't you ? (apart from the 3506 prosecutions in London alone last year). And yes - I have been knocked over (on a pavement) by a cyclist - and he got done for ABH.
As someone who uses footpaths, footways and public rights of way all the time, I can assure you that it is illegal. And if you continue to ride your bike illegally at me on a footpath/footway in the usual 'get out of my way' aggressive manner of most cyclists then I will reserve the right to shove a stick in your spokes. Bloody cyclists want it both ways don't you ? (apart from the 3506 prosecutions in London alone last year). And yes - I have been knocked over (on a pavement) by a cyclist - and he got done for ABH. Hugh Dunnit
  • Score: -7

7:29pm Sun 19 Jan 14

Tobermory says...

Hugh Dunnit wrote:
As someone who uses footpaths, footways and public rights of way all the time, I can assure you that it is illegal. And if you continue to ride your bike illegally at me on a footpath/footway in the usual 'get out of my way' aggressive manner of most cyclists then I will reserve the right to shove a stick in your spokes. Bloody cyclists want it both ways don't you ? (apart from the 3506 prosecutions in London alone last year). And yes - I have been knocked over (on a pavement) by a cyclist - and he got done for ABH.
Since you are such an expert then, what legislation makes it a criminal offence to cycle on a footpath?
I think you will find you are talking out of your proverbial backside! Cycling on a footway ie a pathway alongside a road is an offence under Section 72 of the Highways Act 1835 cycling on a footpath is not an offence unless there is a local byelaw and signage to indicate its an offence.If you were to 'shove a stick in a cyclists spokes' then you yourself would be guilty of assault.
[quote][p][bold]Hugh Dunnit[/bold] wrote: As someone who uses footpaths, footways and public rights of way all the time, I can assure you that it is illegal. And if you continue to ride your bike illegally at me on a footpath/footway in the usual 'get out of my way' aggressive manner of most cyclists then I will reserve the right to shove a stick in your spokes. Bloody cyclists want it both ways don't you ? (apart from the 3506 prosecutions in London alone last year). And yes - I have been knocked over (on a pavement) by a cyclist - and he got done for ABH.[/p][/quote]Since you are such an expert then, what legislation makes it a criminal offence to cycle on a footpath? I think you will find you are talking out of your proverbial backside! Cycling on a footway ie a pathway alongside a road is an offence under Section 72 of the Highways Act 1835 cycling on a footpath is not an offence unless there is a local byelaw and signage to indicate its an offence.If you were to 'shove a stick in a cyclists spokes' then you yourself would be guilty of assault. Tobermory
  • Score: 7

7:54pm Sun 19 Jan 14

emilysw19 says...

Parking on the footway has been a criminal offence since the late 70's and enforcement of it was passed over to local authorities in 1991. The elected members of Merton Council of which Cllr Edge is a member have decided to allow local residents to break this law because to completely ban footway parking would lose votes. I am slightly concerned that a Council that allows residents to drive onto and park on the footway to avoid damage to their cars and still be able to park outside their homes, thinks that is more acceptable than cycling on the footway?
Parking on the footway not only damages the footway causing accidents it also puts pedestrians at risk from cars on the actual footway and from having to walk in the road to avoid them.
You can drive around Merton on any given day and observe hundreds of vehicles openly breaking the law by parking on the footway yet only see a handful of cyclists 'terrorising pedestrians'.
Maybe the Councillor could explain why the Council has a policy of allowing motorists to drive/park on the footway out of convenience whilst at the same time chastising cyclists for using the footway to avoid getting run over?
Parking on the footway has been a criminal offence since the late 70's and enforcement of it was passed over to local authorities in 1991. The elected members of Merton Council of which Cllr Edge is a member have decided to allow local residents to break this law because to completely ban footway parking would lose votes. I am slightly concerned that a Council that allows residents to drive onto and park on the footway to avoid damage to their cars and still be able to park outside their homes, thinks that is more acceptable than cycling on the footway? Parking on the footway not only damages the footway causing accidents it also puts pedestrians at risk from cars on the actual footway and from having to walk in the road to avoid them. You can drive around Merton on any given day and observe hundreds of vehicles openly breaking the law by parking on the footway yet only see a handful of cyclists 'terrorising pedestrians'. Maybe the Councillor could explain why the Council has a policy of allowing motorists to drive/park on the footway out of convenience whilst at the same time chastising cyclists for using the footway to avoid getting run over? emilysw19
  • Score: 6

5:28pm Mon 20 Jan 14

Mind the gap says...

'I'm a cyclist myself' No your not mate, and stop jumping on the anti-cycling bandwagon.
'I'm a cyclist myself' No your not mate, and stop jumping on the anti-cycling bandwagon. Mind the gap
  • Score: 5

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