Legal question about bus lane penalty and general comment

LEGAL ISSUE: This morning the police issued me with a fixed penalty notice for cycling in a bus lane between Holborn and Tottenham Court Road. I haven't cycled this route into town for a while and so wasn't aware the rules for this small stretch of road have changed. I was in the bus lane from Old St roundabout and was concentrating more on drivers around me on this busy stretch of road than keeping an eye out for new signage. The OFFENCE CODE was 304 "Contrvening a Bus Lane". But i have a feeling this offence code only corresponds to CARS and NOT BIKES. Does anyone know if I have any room to appeal on this basis?

GENERAL COMMENT: According to the officer, the police are cracking down today across London on cyclists' misdemeanours as a response to recent deaths. Ok, fine, issue penalty notices for cycling on pavements, running red lights etc. But there were at least three other cyclists ensnared in this bus lane trap in the 20 mins i was talking to the officer. None of us had ANY idea we were in the wrong, and were shocked to have been stopped by police in the first oplace. Making us aware of it would be the first step, not handing out penalty notices to all of us. This heavy handed and cynical approach has the effect of further polarising the space for cycling debate and further establishing a cyclists vs everyone else dynamic. It is now turning into a proper fight. The police and the Mayor of London have positioned themselves in opposition to cyclists in my view. 

Replies

Not sure if I was looking at the right bus lane but I just had a look at google maps pictures and the bus lane markers I looked at each had a cycle in them allowing bikes.

All I can say is you need to check the bus lane signs to see who's allowed.

First time I've heard of cyclists being prevented though.

I'd like to see the outcome of your tribulations.

I thought cycles are legally exempt from the bus lane law.

If it's the contraflow bus lane that runs from Red Lion Square via Bloomsbury Street then you were "Contrvening a Bus Lane". There's a 'no cycling' sign on the traffic light at the Red Lion Square end.

I remember TfL said something about changing this to allow cyclists to use this route following the death of Alan Neve at Holborn in July. I guess they've changed their mind...

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