Isn’t it time cyclists were made to pay?

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Upon emerging from the covered walkway running from Harmer Lane aside Sheffield Hallam University buildings to Sheaf Street last Wednesday (20.05.2014) morning, I and several others were nearly in collision with a speeding cyclist as we made our way across the pavement to the Pelican Crossing to await the lights to change and hence enable safe crossing of Sheaf Street to the Midland Station.

I instinctively shouted to him to get off the pavement as he sped by, in reaction to which he screeched to a halt some distance away and retorted that it was a cycle lane, thereby implying that it was the pedestrians that were in the wrong and not him; thus leaving me to wonder if this indeed be the case.

For there are two seeming “lanes” differentiated by different coloured bricks (orangey and purple respectively) running parallel to Sheaf Street which I have hitherto taken for pavement, that cut across the area presumably put in place for pedestrians to await light changes if necessary.

Thus meaning that if one or other of the coloured lanes is a designated cycle path, then the said path will cut across the pedestrian area; in turn meaning that the cyclists will come into contact with a body of pedestrians from time to time as they await the lights to change to enable them to safely cross the busy main road; thereby begging the question as to who has “right of way” and if it be the cyclists, then, where are the pedestrians supposed to gather to await light changes in order to avoid collisions with cyclists or blocking their way? So perhaps someone from the appropriate department can publicly clarify this situation, please?

But as for the menace of cyclists on pavements in general, and very often at speed whilst seeming to revel in weaving their way through alarmed pedestrians, isn’t it about time that cyclists were legally required to carry registration plates and insurance like other road users? In this way, CCTV operators and aggrieved pedestrians, for example, can take their numbers and report them to the appropriate authority for action against them in an effort to persuade them to behave in a more law abiding, safe and socially acceptable manner.

For it’s rather ironic is it not, that while some cyclists who deem it too dangerous for them to cycle on the road amongst motor vehicles, nevertheless appear not to care less about endangering pedestrians by cycling on pavements?

Michael Parker

Robertshaw Crescent, Deepcar S36 2RX