Cycling hits the headlines

Cycling is the ideal alternative to paying the congestion charge. That’s the view of the The Times and the Evening Standard. Both papers featured cycling prominently on the 21st February 2007 two days after London’s congestion charge was extend westwards.

The leader article in The Times, entitled ‘Pedal Power’, argues that road proceeds should be invested in repopularising the bicycle. "It may seem paradoxical that an intermediate technology is now the future. But it would be churlish not to encourage cycling as the cheap, green answer to so many contemporary troubles.”

The article suggests that many people who endure the grinding ‘stop-and-start’ experience of driving in Central London would save time, and money, by cycling. It also describes cycling as an "elegant and intelligent response to pollution and traffic congestion", and finishes "may those who cycle be blessed with clean consciences, stronger arteries and safer journeys."

The online version of the article has generated comments such as "I wouldn't commute by any other means than my bike" and "Great to see some encouragement for cycling."
You can view the article in full, along with comments from readers, via the link on the right.

The Evening Standard ran a double page centre spread on cycling, entitled ‘Revolution on wheels: First tube fares went up, now the C-Charge zone has doubled, making 2007 the perfect year to start cycling.’

Columnist Will Self describes cycling as 'a joy in the city’ – since his wife bought him a bike five years ago, he’s never looked back. Self calculates that he saves ‘at least £500 a year cycling – probably more’ and has ‘more puff’ than his non-cycling friends.

And then there’s the sheer convenience: "I always – I repeat always – know how long a journey is going to take me, even one I haven’t done before", not to mention the freedom: "No longer yoked to capricious transport timetables, or the vagaries of the traffic, you’re at liberty to come and go as you please. Once you’ve grown accustomed to negotiating the traffic, you can actually look around you at the city."

The article also features information supplied by LCC on bikes and bike shops, security, rides, routes and more.