Campaigners in Edinburgh brand cycling ‘a joke’ in Scottish capital

New video released by campaign group to highlight road dangers facing cyclists in Edinburgh

Edinburgh group of cyclists
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Cycling is just ‘a joke’ in Edinburgh, according to a video released by campaign group ‘Critical Mass’ (opens in new tab)

The group shot the film in the Scottish capital to demonstrate the dangers facing cyclists in the city. Watching the video demonstrates widespread potholes, dangerous junctions and cycle paths that turn sharply causing chaos for two-wheeled users. 

Edinburgh was recently ranked as the 54th most cycling-friendly city in the world. 

According to Edinburgh News (opens in new tab), the group also say that drivers in the capital ‘ignore what little good cycle infrastructure the city does have’. The group have previously attracted controversy after organising mass rides in the city in a bid to reclaim spaces for the city’s cyclists. 

The new video has been released to coincide with the recent festival season in the city and shows a cyclist from the group navigating a series of busy roads. On several occasions the rider comments on issues affecting cyclists such as the ‘poorly designed’ cycle lanes. 

Critical Mass also claims the Scottish capital only has two miles of cycle paths separate from car users and pedestrians. Campaigners from the group have also compared that stat to countries like the Netherlands where 25% of all roads are cycle friendly. 

Sam Wheldon-Bayes of the group suggested that the roads in the city are ‘intimidating’ to news users. 

He said: “Every Edinburgh resident knows that the city is difficult to get around in August. Cycling should be an easy way for residents and visitors to get across the city and avoid the traffic,

“The council needs to make more protected bike lanes, connect them up better, and prioritise cyclists and pedestrians in their transport plans.”

The group's message was echoed by Duncan Dollimore of Cycling UK who argued that the UK government needs to do more to protect cyclists and other vulnerable road users. 

“We all want to live on safe, vibrant streets, but too many people are currently put off cycling,” he said. “Politicians and decision makers need to hear the message that for the people and the planet, the bicycle really is best," he added. 

Edinburgh Critical Mass are welcoming new riders to join them for a campaign ride on 27 August. 

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