The Big Picture
Just a thought, but I'm not sure anyone's voiced it, and I think it's worth consideration if nothing else:
Given the fact that Barclays are no longer going to fund the Cycle Hire scheme, are our high profile protest events actually having a net negative effect?
Logic is as follows:
Mass cycling is a Very Good Thing and Cycle Hire has gone a long way IMHO to helping that. I'm guessing that losing a big sponsor is a very bad thing for its future expansion. From what I can tell, Barclays were not overjoyed about the negative publicity coming from the tragic spate of recent deaths (of course amongst a number of considerations), and this may hve tipped the balance in favour of not renewing their sponsorship. Also, seemigly a scarily high proportion of cyclists have stopped after the recent deaths and publicity (http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-25176031).
There is clearly a lot more media attention on safety in cycling than in previous years, despite the overall death toll being (big-picture) constant for the last few years, and the LCC is clearly a driver of this. We have gone out of our way to make sure that the media do not ignore the plight of cyclists on the roads.
Would London's cyclists have been better off with less attention on the negative aspects of cycle safety and more corporate cash supporting mass cycling and less terrified cycle commuters? I think I could probably be pursuaded either way with the right evidence/argument.
That wasn't brilliantly articulated, but I hope you get the point. Would be interested to hear other views.
This post was edited by thuzbuz at 8:09pm 18 December 2013.