Crossing the North Circular
I am lucky that my commute does not require me to pass through the more congested, central parts of the city, where the dangers of London cycling seem to be at their highest. I've managed to find a reasonably direct route that keeps me off the main roads as much as possible.
One thing I'm unable to avoid, though, is crossing the North Circular at a major road junction (in my case, the bridge between North and East Finchley). This brings me into close proximity with fast-moving vehicles, HGVs and buses, and is not a pleasant experience.
This bridge in particular used to have mandatory (solid white line) cycle lanes across its length, with accompanying blue road signs indicating the presence of the cycle lanes. Unfortunately, the paint had faded to the point of invisibility, and so most drivers were not aware that the lane was there.
I reported this on FixMyStreet and wrote to my local councillors. I only got one response (saying that it was being forwarded to someone else... who didn't respond).
Eventually, the council did decide to "solve" the problem... by removing the signs completely! There is now a short filter lane on the north-bound carriageway leading up to the traffic lights, but no lanes or signs across the main span of the bridge where the traffic moves most quickly.
Barnet is not renowned for its cycle-friendly policies. If any candidates call to my house in the run up to the May elections, I'll certainly be asking whether they plan to improve their attitude to cyclists!
I'd be interested to hear other people's stories (good or bad) when it comes to crossing the North Circular, or even cycling along it! (is that even allowed??).