Radstock resident responds to Eleanor Jackson's 'Unsightly bike hanger' letter stating it has no recognition of the value of cycling:


Dear Editor,

Cycling is great for Radstock

I write in response to the letter, ‘Unsightly bike hanger’. In her letter Eleanor Jackson shows no recognition of the value of cycling as a low cost mode of transport for people with no garden or shed or people in flats who would have to climb flights of stairs with their bikes.

Bikes are an affordable means of getting about for many young people and those on low income. Personally, I have saved about £3,000 per year by getting rid of a car and cycling to work.

There is no recognition of the many problems that a cycling culture overcomes. No recognition that cycling emits no fumes, greenhouse gases or particulates and therefore does not add to the toxic air that contributes to asthma, strokes, heart disease, dementia or indeed planetary heating.

There is no recognition that the exercise of cycling is positively beneficial for our physical and mental health. No recognition that cycling is silent or that the space used to park bikes is minimal when compared to the acres taken up by vehicles.

There is also zero recognition of the economic gain cycling culture brings to Radstock and other towns connected to the National Cycle Network.

Many of the cyclists that visit Radstock can be seen using it’s cafes and shops. Also Bike It, Radstock’s very own independent bike shop is a great resource for cyclists in the area.

Given the environmental, social and economic benefits of cycling it would be welcome if Eleanor Jackson put effort into the development of cycling infrastructure and culture rather than knocking it.

For example a cycle path through Waterside Valley running from Westfield Industrial Estate to Radstock would be a safe and beautiful off road link to the national network.

Yours sincerely,

Stephen Pritchard