Cyclists in a suburb of Reading will no longer receive warnings before being issued with a fine

Disobeying cyclists in a Berkshire suburb who ride on the pavement will be charged £30.

Residents in Caversham, a suburb of Reading, have been warned that Thames Valley Police are cracking down on those who do not abide by the Highway Code after a number of complaints to the police force in recent months about the problem.

>>> Jeremy Vine stopped by police for ‘speeding’ through Hyde Park on his bike 

Previously, officers have issued three warnings but the penalty tickets will now be enforced immediately to curb the danger posed to pedestrians by cyclists on pavements.

Neighbourhood Police officers will be predominantly present in the shopping precinct and the Caversham Bridge area. Just two days of patrolling last week before the force began applying the fines on Thursday (January 15) saw 26 people stopped and warned about cycling away from the road.

>>> Van driver hands himself in to police after cyclist attack video goes viral (video) 

The scheme appears to have the support of most of the local public but the local council have been told that they need to do more to get people on bikes instead of deterring increased usage.

  • Mark Jones

    I agree, it’s down to being respectful of one another and is that something that is disappearing from modern Britain as so many are is rushing around thinking about no-one but themselves. A bit more courtesy and patience from everyone and things would be a lot better.

  • Mark Jones

    That is a really good point about riding two abreast to slow and overtake when it is safe to do so. Courteous cyclists would then thin to single file to allow the vehicle to pass when it is safe and possible to do so.

    As you also say, some of the highway code is advisory. Like keeping both hands on the handlebars – this is also down to the competency and experience of the cyclist and a bit of common sense. A bit of patience from everyone would go a long way.

  • Mark Jones

    I appreciate that after our conversation and do understand your frustration. It is the bad cyclists who give us a bad reputation and mean we are constantly trying to repair the damage done. The same goes for motorists and it is the minority of impatient careless drivers who think driving faster will always get them there faster (best had to be being overtook on a snow covered hill in Berkshire to see the same car 50 yards down the road spun 180 degrees – we did laugh as he looked at us!!).

    Perhaps I am lucky that I don’t have to cycle into the city centre here in Bristol and have heard of instances of students (pedestrians) not moving out of the way not walking into other pedestrians. Is it Cambridge students who are move of a problem and is their sense of entitlement a reflection of them in general.

    You stay safe too and we will keep doing our bit to repair our reputation.

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    Mark I valued our chat, I am not a cyclist hater, I love my bikes and one I treat like a baby . Had it 24 years and never leave it anywhere i can’t see it or get to it in seconds.

    Cyclist the UK meet some terrible, terrible motorist which huge senses of entitlement.

    I just happen to know that so do motorist in Cambridge meet cyclist who have the same sense of entitlement and mask it with excuses.

    Stay safe.

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    How do i collect the refund on my Guarantee?

    Two abreast, again Rule 66 …where roads permit…

    My ‘little world’ very mature, if in doubt adopt an arrogant air of authority. Sure to mark you out as a powerful intellect, oh hang on while trying to be superior you forgot, airbrushed out of your mind I am a cyclist. (To the tune of DA, DA, DER)

    Yes, yes, yes as I have written all over this post I am a cyclist and a motorist. My cycling habits have ranged from nil to 22 miles per day. They are just about to start again at 3 miles a day, and build back up again to 22 miles per day. Need to drop some lbs to get into my new sports car.

    Much as you would like to exclude me from your ‘we’. I am am one of the ‘we’ I am just happen to be a cyclist who respects what I was taught at 10 years old.

    Hang on though don’t tell me I am not a real cyclist like you till I ride on some pavements, through red lights.

    Your own bigotry is what blinds you to the fact, that it is possible to respect rules/laws and not have an ‘entitlement’ issue, but I am sure Freud could make a case for you having one.

    Clearly the rules for your very large world are much the same as those pesky red light jumpers. Though I must admit the continents of the world I have lived, worked and travelled in. I have not met many people like your post marks you out to be.

    As I get older I try to be a better person, which mostly means having a more balanced view. I apologise that being able to see the negative impact of cycling in Cambridge offends you so deeply.

  • tzut

    “Pavements were not made for cyclist and NOR WERE ROADS”

    Wrong. They were made for cyclists, horses, motorcyclists, buses, lorries, cars, and so on. In a word: for road users. And remember most roads were there long before motor vehicles had even been thought of.

  • Moorie

    I have lived worked and work in Cambridge since 1959. I cycle and drive. 29% of journeys in Cambridge are by bicycle so that leaves 71% that use a motorised vehicle. I can assure everyone that the drivers are not as “law abiding” in Cambridge as is being made out on this thread but agree some of the cyclists do put their life in danger! Cycling on a footpath is not the biggest problem for pedestrians. Motor vehicles still remain the biggest threat to their health.
    Some parts of the Highway code are a legal requirements. The rest is advisory so there is no certainty in a court that you could be successfully prosecuted. The circumstances at the time might dictate the outcome and override the recommendation. For instance riding two abreast on a narrow road with a bend is safer as it forces drivers to slow and overtake when it is safe to do so. If singled out some drivers will try to come through without a clear view of the road ahead and swerve left if something appears. End of cyclists.

  • Mark Jones

    “One muppet driver makes the press for an act of road rage on a cyclist every now and then”
    The problem is we are constantly reading about good safe cyclists with wives, husbands, parents, children who are being killed because of reckless driving and sometimes it is deliberate.

  • Mark Jones

    I cannot comment on Cambridge, but in Bristol it is the motorists that are the problem. Most days the local roads are congested because of accidents on the motorways surrounding the city and there are often fatalities.

    Look back to the previous weekend and you will see an article where an article had been posted about a car overtaking and the general consensus was that the cyclists were in the wrong for riding all over the place. So I think we are probably arguing for no apparent reason. As cyclists we get a lot of grief from a small percentage of motorists (and more so as cycling becomes more popular). I’m not sure whether it is the majority or minority of cyclists who cause problems for other road users, but this will vary between different parts of the country.

    I have cycled long distances since 1987 and the situation has got worse with motorists becoming more impatient. Is this because there are more bikes on the road, or because people are just becoming less patient and intolerable as we are living in a generation who expect everything at once? I recall two instances of road rage towards me or fellow cyclists I knew in the 80s and 90s, but sometimes it can be two a week. I am sick of the times that a car nearly cuts me up and know it will get worse before it gets better. Were people more tolerant 20 years ago, because more people knew what it was like to cycle; will it come full cycle as more people cycle.

    The problem is that the people on here are most likely not your ‘Cambridge cyclist’ who have no consideration for others. My experience of true cyclists are polite, courteous people who will stop if you have a puncture and say hello to one another as you pass. So these cyclists you refer to are alien to me (well apart from when I go on the Bristol and Bath cycle path!!).

    Cyclists should not be allowed to run red lights. I may jump a red light on a very quiet road if there is no traffic in any direction, or cycle on a pavement if needs must but only for a very short distance and would go slower and be courteous to the other 1 or 2 pedestrians (if any at all!). I always prefer to cycle on the road and then get the usual moans about getting off the road as I don’t pay road tax (or vehicle excise duty for my heavy polluting bike but I do pay income tax that goes towards all the damage my heavy 10 ton bike causes), as they have to wait 1-2 seconds before they can speed past me and join the rest of the traffic a few hundred yards down the road. The best had to be when I noticed a few cars behind me on a busy road who’d had to wait maybe 30 seconds, so I pulled into a lay by to let them through only to be greeted with an angry sound of the horns of the first car. Now I know this is a tiny minority, but these are the ones who are in the headlines ramming cyclists off the road and deliberately aiming to kill someone. So this is why we get a bit defensive on here, when someone comes on with anti-cycling comments.

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    Well I am pretty much set financially and what time I do have I spend working on the web, plus I love a good debate 🙂

    Your logic is rules and laws were broken but nobody died so they don’t matter. I just don’t support that view and most important of all I think the push to ignore cyclist who run red lights will result in more cyclist deaths not less.

    I am also quoting specifics not generics. For example the cyclist who choose to cross in front of me without checking their path when I am travelling at 40 mph and and 20-30 feet behind them, put their life in my hands and wish me to defy the laws of physics to slow my vehicle, or as Steve put it drive on the other side of road when I see a cyclist. Which would create a new hazard, as my car would be parked every 40 feets, while I waited for the on-comming traffic to pass and the cyclist I pass every 10 feet over taking me.

    By the generic logic aimed back at me I am a bad motorist for having these concerns and I am to read the minds of the cyclist on the roads I share. In deference to them following what you are taught on a basic cycling proficiency course.

    My motivation is life preservation not defending motorist, I think that best achieved by dealing with the Elephant in the room which is cyclist are no better than motorist, tough sell on a cycling site I know.

    I’ll go sell our cycles as penance for I am not worthy 😉

  • Mark Jones

    I’d prefer it if they were out catching criminals. Oh and you are incredibly lucky that motorists in Cambridge are so law abiding, as I’ve seen thousands of motorists jumping red lights, overtaking without indication, talking on their mobile phones, exiting junctions, driving on cycle lanes designed only for cyclists, driving in excess of the allowed limit. On my drive to work today I was tailgated in a 30 zone, drove a mile long lane where at least five sections of the hedge are missing due to idiots driving too fast, oh and i had to take a 20 minute diversion because the work was closed due to an accident (must have been a cyclist’s fault!!!) – that’s without even doing a survey!!

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    Just more of the same generics of bad motorist to the specifics of Cambridge which is described as a city of narrow, busy streets.

    By definition of the city description that would rule out two abreast anywhere.

    My definition of legal is that you can be prosecuted for failure to follow the highway code, so in literal terms there is not a law on just two abreast, but the highway code is a set of rules to which wider laws can be applied. Ergo legal.

    In a city which is described as narrow and busy where is 2 abreast to figure then?

  • ghh

    Is this a wind-up, or is that really how you choose to spend your day? Anyway, assuming you are serious, what you appear totally to neglect is the fact that all these infractions have a negigible effect on road safety, which is why most people don’t get too upset by them. You are wasting a lot of mental energy on something rather insignificant. Bicycles usually don’t kill people, cars very often do.

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    I agree motorist need to raise their game, I just don’t think that motorist in Cambridge are the problem.

    All arguments put back to me raise up the argument to a generic examples of bad motorist, while my complaint is a specific one about Cambridge the home of the cyclist for which their is no credible reply.

    The other assumption is a must be one of those bad motorist because I object to poor cycling. Even my mates in the local cycle club don’t want to be associated with cyclist in Cambridge!

    So be specific should cyclist be permitted to run red lights and cycle on pavements? If so why, and what is pedestrian do when confronted by a bike and a motorist supposed to do when progressing on a green light to do, when a cyclist runs the red light. The argument for running a red light is basically the cyclist is more important than the motorist (exactly what is claimed of the motorist) and the logic of traffic flow control does not apply to bikes even though it will have a net effect of causing chaos for motorist approaching junctions.

  • Mark Jones

    “Two abreast is not legal”
    “Rule 66: never ride more than two abreast”

    So it’s not legal, but then you quote the highway code, which says you can if conditions allow.
    As for rules being broken by cyclists, well hundreds of motorists are also breaking the rules that apply to them.

  • Mark Jones

    “Try telling motorist that is fair and you can’t, which is why even the most considerate of drivers has a problem with cyclists.”
    I think you’ll find they have more of a problem with other fellow motorists. Have a listen to the traffic news and you’ll find most of the delays are caused by driver carelessness and not following the highway code.

  • Mark Jones

    As a motorist and a cyclist, here’s one I’d like to see obeyed more by fellow motorists

    184

    On approaching a roundabout take notice and act on all the information available to you, including traffic signs, traffic lights and lane markings which direct you into the correct lane. You should

    use Mirrors – Signal – Manoeuvre at all stages

    decide as early as possible which exit you need to take

    give an appropriate signal (see Rule 186, below). Time your signals so as not to confuse other road users

    get into the correct lane

    adjust your speed and position to fit in with traffic conditions

    be aware of the speed and position of all the road users around you.

  • ConcernedofCambridge

    It is amazing how many cyclist think other cyclist are bad motorist, if they don’t have a fanatical hatred of the motorist.

    I made a comment that I liked the fact Berkshire Police were handing out fines for cyclist riding on pavements. Could they extend that to red light jumping and a few other issues…

    Today as an observational exercise I counted the offences by cyclist on the school run versus motorist.

    41 Cyclists rode on pavements design only for pedestrians. No motorists did the same.

    7 Cyclists jumped red lights, no motorists did the same.

    6 Cyclists overtook other cyclist without indication, or a check to see if their path was clear/how close a motor vehicle was to them at the time of their maneuver. No cars overtook each other.

    3 Cyclists existed T-Junctions with give way signs without giving way. No motorist did the same.

    2 Cyclists ride the wrong way down a two way road. No motorists did the same.

    1 Cyclist road in front of a car while they were making a legal 3 point turn, in a side road. No motorist did the same.

    1 Cyclist failed to indicate to turn right, here two motorist failed to do the same. 7 issues/offences/contraventions of the highway code score 6-1 to the Cyclists.

    Today it was a low count day in fact for red light jumping, included at the new cross roads where the light system lets bikes go first there are still red light jumpers.

    Lets say however this was a typical day, and over the space of 1 hour the maths carried forward by 260 working days per year, knock off 28 days for illness and holidays (14,152 offences) and it could be easily proven that Cyclist commit the most breaches in the Highway code/road traffic violations/road traffic offences than motorist. Can’t wait for my retirement and time for my PHD thesis on Cyclist the law breakers of the century.

    That is one hour, if the same happens on the evening journey thats would be 28,304 per year. Double the number for simplicity to cover the remaining hours of the day and you have 56,608 issues a year made by Cyclist who cant/more likely won’t follow what a Primary School rider is taught on their proficiency test.

  • Steve

    I see we understand two abreast is legal now! lesson one learnt!
    Now when you are driving behind a cyclist

    1, Be patient.
    2, Be aware he may need to swerve because of pot holes.
    3, Never beep your horn trying to intimidate him.
    4, Never overtake him on bends. (this is dangerous!)
    5, Always Give the cyclist at least a cars width when passing.
    6, Never pass him at speed. “above the speed limit”
    7, Be courtious respect he has a right to use the road!
    8, Do not put his life in danger!
    9, Understand cyclists are people with family at home “Wife and Kids”
    10, Understand not all cyclists are bad!

    It would be nice to observe your driving and Im sure I could
    give you some pointers on how you could improve!

  • DarrenRevell

    While Einstein (ghh) is trying to link my views on how Cambridge cyclist are wrong because they caused the Ebola crisis!!!

    I’ll make my last observation which is the intellects that may have a say in our lives in the future, cycle round Cambridge daily breaking rules and laws that would result in a fail of a ‘cycling proficiency’ test any primary school child could pass.

    As one commentator said if you don’t know how to use a bike then you should not be on the road.

  • ghh

    What has fairness got to do with it? What do you even mean by “fair”?

    Do you know how many cyclists have been killed by motorists in the UK so far in 2015? How many people have been killed as a result of transgressions by cyclists? The fatalities aren’t “fair” either, are they? But they do explain why motorists should perhaps be subjected to a higher level of scrutiny than cyclists.

    And as for “even the most considerate of drivers has a problem with cyclists”: that is complete and utter nonsense. I am a driver. Virtually everyone I know is a driver. None of us “has a problem with cyclists”. Also, I have been a cyclists for many years, and the vast majority of motorists I have encountered has treated me with courtesy and consideration. Most drivers don’t have a problem with cyclists at all.

  • DarrenRevell

    72
    On the left. When approaching a junction on the left, watch out for vehicles turning in front of you, out of or into the side road. Just before you turn, check for undertaking cyclists or motorcyclists. Do not ride on the inside of vehicles signalling or slowing down to turn left.

    In 4 years have yet to see a cyclist follow this rule in Cambridge. If the road has a cycle lane then they undertake cars trying to turn left in their hundreds daily. Roads without bike lanes it is the same deal.

    One muppet driver makes the press for an act of road rage on a cyclist every now and then, thousands of road traffic offences are committed by cyclists in Cambridge daily and a blind eye is turned.

    Try telling motorist that is fair and you can’t, which is why even the most considerate of drivers has a problem with cyclists.

  • DarrenRevell

    and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends

  • DarrenRevell

    never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends

  • DarrenRevell

    Rule 66.

    You should

    keep both hands on the handlebars except when signalling or changing gear

    keep both feet on the pedals

    never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends

    not ride close behind another vehicle

    not carry anything which will affect your balance or may get tangled up with your wheels or chain

    be considerate of other road users, particularly blind and partially sighted pedestrians. Let them know you are there when necessary, for example, by ringing your bell if you have one. It is recommended that a bell be fitted.

  • bob

    It’s the kids on bikes on footpaths that are a bigger problem though. Especially the ones egged on by a belligerent parent.

  • ghh

    “Cycling two abreast is not legal”? That makes about as much sense as saying “cycling is not legal” because there are roads where cycling is not allowed. It is the kind of ignorant generalisation that results in motorists thinking they are entitled to endanger other road users’ lives.

    Cycling two (or three) abreast where you shouldn’t doesn’t generally kill prople. Attitudes such as “Oi! Get off my road. You lot don’t even pay road tax. You’re not allowed to ride next to each other!” (on wide, fast roads where cycling two abreast makes perfect sense) do, too often, result in injury or death.

  • DarrenRevell

    Two abreast is not legal, and it is this kind of ignorance by cyclist that is the best evidence yet of a lack of knowledge and respect for the law. Two abreast is dictated by the road conditions not universally open to riders.

    Rule 66: never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends.

    My point has been about Cambridge, its roads are both narrow and busy, the wider ones have cycles lanes but hey if three students want a chat on the way to lectures goes what they cycles two abreast in the cycle lanes and one in the road.

  • Steve

    I agree and lets see more action against motorists for not being considerate to other road users speeding, hogging the middle lanes being aggressive to other road users not knowing the highway code! cycling 2 abreast is legal!! not giving cyclists enough space when passing cyclists! using mobile phones whilst driving the list goes on I agree we have bad cyclists but I think motorist are a lot worse and should take a good look at themselves before they criticise others!

  • Steve Stuart

    If your a grown up, and you cant ride on the road, then you shouldn’t own a bike

  • DarrenRevell

    Cyclist who ride on pavements are a menace, glad to see the action taking place. Now lets see added to that running red lights, riding through road crossings while people are walking on them, no indication when changing lanes, no looking over their shoulder before changing lanes to see if their path is clear, undertaking cars while they turn left into junctions, cycling two, three, four…10 abreast where the road conditions say stay in single file…

  • Excellent use of already-over-stretched Police resources.