1500 protestors tell Mayor Boris Johnson that cycling needs dedicated space to make Londoners safe

A vocal but good-natured crowd of around 1500 Londoners rode the route from Tower Hill to Aldgate to tell Mayor Boris Johnson that cycling on Cycle Superhighway 2, and other dangerous roads in London, needs dedicated space to be safe.

(more photos below, and on Demotix and ibikelondon)

LCC's Ashok Sinha said, "Thanks to everyone who came on the #space4cycling protest ride on Friday 12 July, and to those many people who also helped organise and publicise the event.

"The message to Boris Johnson is clear: that cycling deaths on our city streets are not an unfortunate by-product of the increase in cycling's popularity, rather they are a disastrous consequence of the Mayor's failure to provide dedicated space for cycling on London's most dangerous roads.

"We call on the Mayor to immediately set a timetable for the redesign of Cycle Superhighway 2, and to honour his commitment made during the 2012 mayoral election to take all Superhighways to Love London, Go Dutch standards of comfort and safety." 

BBC and ITN news were in attendance on the protest ride, while the Metropolitan Police kept the riders safe in concert with a skilled group of red-vested LCC marshals.

Exactly a week since Philippine de Gerin-Ricard was run over by a lorry on Cycle Superhighway 2 in Aldgate, the ride leaders laid flowers at the exact location where the French student was struck. 

The word's of the victim's mother were fresh in our minds, that none of us can "understand how they can put bicycles and motor vehicles so close together at this spot".

The flowers were laid in the street at the head of the ride, and the following riders parted each side of them to pay their respects. 

Where the ride ended in Altab Ali Park in Tower Hamlets, LCC chair of trustees Anne Kenrick spoke passionately about the need for change, fuelled by anger and frustration that her 15-year-old nephew Guy had been knocked off his bike by a lorry in Wandsworth earlier that day, fortunate not to have suffered worse injuries than a broken pelvis.

In the afternoon before the ride, delegates from Action on Lorry Danger met at City Hall to further remind the Mayor of the vulnerability of cyclists and pedestrians.

photos: Anna Gudaniec, Tom Bogdanowicz, MDX