Surrey Police are targeting inconsiderate cyclists in the Box Hill area as the roads become ever more popular for riding.



In the last two days the Police have been handing out leaflets to cyclists that read:

CARELESS & INCONSIDERATE RIDING: If a person rides a cycle, on a road, without due care and attention, or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road, is guilty of an offence. [sic] £1,000 FINE



A Police spokesperson said that this action was taken due to “quite a lot of anti-social cycling in the area.” When asked to confirm what anti-social cycling was they said it applied to those who were riding more than two abreast, or in big groups, and causing cars to slow down.



Rule 66 of the Highway Code states: never ride more than two abreast, and ride in single file on narrow or busy roads and when riding round bends.



Cycling in groups is not restricted in any way.



The move comes months after PS Simon Cox, Mole Valley Sergeant, contacted several cycling and triathlon clubs in the South East warning them of anti-social and inconsiderate riding.



Part of the letter sent to the clubs reads; ‘We have also had increased reports ….. about groups of cyclists blocking roads by cycling in “pelotons”. In addition, we have had complaints regarding the inappropriate speed of some cyclists in the narrow and winding lanes around the Surrey Hills.’



It goes on to say that there has been one very serious collision near Box Hill involving a cyclist. Nowhere does it say that any cyclists have committed an offence.



The letter closes by saying; ‘Please could I ask you to ensure that your club riders are aware of the complaints we are receiving, to ensure that they do not become subject to complaints themselves.’



Cycling Weekly will be investigating this further over the coming weeks.

 surrey police, cycling

 

  • Only Me

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/carltonreid/5937441086/
    “Motorists Please do not overtake cyclists through pedestrian refuge”
    Sign in Cheshire ?

  • Ann Cakebread

    I do wish the Hampshire police in the New Forest National Park would copy the Surrey force and take more interest in the numerous instances of careless, inconsiderate and sometimes dangerous riding by the ever-increasing numbers of riders in sportives and other events, and those training for such events.

    Parish councils receive numerous reports. Residents reported one cyclist who rode so fast down a steep bumpy hill that he lost control on the cattle grid at the bottom and flew through the air, landing on the bonnet of a stationary car (denting it) which had pulled to one side to allow the cyclists to pass. Another time two cyclists silently descended our 25% hill at top speed, passing close to a young lady leading her horse, causing hooves to flail and the lady to be bruised, although she did manage to prevent the horse dragging her into the ditch. The Police say such incidents are the responsibility of the event organisers, whom we usually have no means of contacting.

    Our New Forest roads are working roads, mostly single track, used and needed by the local population and commoners caring for their stock (without which the Forest would cease to exist). Unfortunately a great many cyclists don’t seem to realise that locals need to use the roads and make no attempt to allow residents to exit their driveways, blocking the road with continuous “pelotons” more than two abreast sometimes for up to half an hour. Do they not realise, for instance, that doctors and nurses often need to make urgent visits to sick patients? One motorist recently patiently followed behind two cyclists side-by-side on a sraight stretch for some way, Eventually he realised he would be late for an appointment and gave a gentle toot, whereupon he was subjected to vile abuse and kicks aimed at his car as he eventually did manage to pass. A commoner was driving his stock, as he has to do every day to be fed, and a large group of riders came up behind him loudly demanding to be allowed to pass – not possible on a single track road. Again, foul abuse and unforgivable kicks and slaps for the animals. Another of our steep hills has a very narrow, sharp completely blind bend at the bottom, from which a cyclist recently emerged head down very fast, causing a local motorist approaching very slowly to throw his car on to the verge to avoid him. Some cycle chat comments suggest that contact between car and cycle should always be the driver’s fault: in this case, if the car had been two seconds earlier there would have been no room to avoid a crash. Whose fault would it have been? In the National Park animals have priority, so whose fault was it when a cyclist rode into a cow and broke both his arms? The cow also suffered, of course.

    Please, cyclists, show consideration to other road users – go single file if necessary, ride slowly in dangerous areas, make the sacrifice of a few seconds added to your timing. We residents are pretty tolerant but having about half of our weekends overrun by huge events (up to 2000 competitors) would be easier to bear if the riders showed us due courtesy.

  • Richard Hutchings

    Little surprise here the police these days are little more than high visibility thugs and bullies looking only to maximise the number of arrests. Cyclists are far more sinned against than sinning as we all know and almost every time one cycles there is an incident involving motorists turning in front of you or leaving insufficient space. I have long since ceased to have any respect for the police who seem to regard cyclists as easy targets.

  • goff greenwood

    Some police have always made up their own laws about cycling-I was once stopped and made to wheel my bike the two miles home. My offence-not having BOTH hands on the brake levers at all times when climbing a hill ( I was riding fixed gear) Contrast that with the friendly inner city police who patrol on bikes and you realise it’s all about ignorance.

  • Chris Gerhard

    I spoke to Inspector Terri Poulton and have written up the conversation on my blog http://wp.me/pyoib-10E

  • JIm Ross

    I hear all the comments from cyclists with a degree of sympathy but they all hold one common thread, “the cyclsits have the right to do as they wish on the roads”.
    Please use a little common sense and remember you might be her for a one off pleasant weekend ride. The residents of this area have to put up with the problem every weekend, and at times of mass cycle rides (organised or ad-hoc) I am afraid that the majority of cyclists do block the roads by riding 3 or 4 abreast. The motorists must be aware of cyclists needs but it also must be a two way street

  • Simon Richardson

    When you guys talk, people listen. Keep your comments coming in, we love hearing from you.

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/cyclists-attack-police-harassment-2361334.html

  • GrumpyOldBiker

    I’m afraid this nonsense is just typical of this car obsessed society, who seem unable to grasp the key facts that it is motorists that cause 99% of the deaths on the roads and 99% of congestion.

    As for causing cars to slow down, probably more than 50% of the roads local to me are two way but effectively single “file” because of the huge numbers of cars that are parked on both sides of them all the time. Drivers have to wait for oncoming traffic, stopping and starting continuously EVERY time they go down these roads, 365 days a year, but car drivers seem to accept this as OK, why? because reducing the width of a road by 2 metres with parked cars (4 metres if you include both sides) is perfectly acceptable, isn’t it? (Incidentally the same Surrey country roads and lanes being discussed often have random vehicles parked on them making them single “file”, but hey these are cars, be fair!)

    I complained to my local council about the narrow carriageway they were creating (unnecessarily) when installing very wide islands on suburban roads, leaving insufficient room for a car to pass a cyclist safely. The spokesman for Bromley Council told me I should “take the lane” and prevent any vehicles passing me while passing these islands, (but will they put up signs at every traffic island telling motorists to give way and not to pass cyclists here? – no way!). So will “taking the lane” as advised be seen by the Police as “inconsiderate”?

    We need to wake up as a nation to the potential value of cycling as a nation, it is a no brainer for road safety reasons, health, and for reducing CO2 emissions. A couple of key changes in the law would help change the mindset:

    1. Motorists should always be at fault when hitting a cyclist.
    2. There should be a mandatory jail sentence for killing a cyclist.

    I have discussed cycling in the UK with a number of European cyclists and they all think that many UK motorists are terribly inconsiderate and ignorant towards cyclists, many of them remarking that Uk motorists don’t even know the UK law or the highway code rules that apply to cyclists.

  • andy halle

    perhaps plod should spend more time booking cyclists who ride on footpaths and/or ride at night with no lights or flashing red lights which I believe are illegal; loads of dosh for Gideon Osbourne.

  • Bridget Band

    Ah, now I know the reason why. I was unaware of the facts until reading your clip but I had noticed recently that cars (and vans) seem to be giving me a lot less space when they are overtaking. Previously I have always defended Surrey motorists as being quite thoughtful: do some now feel they have carte blanche to forget their manners?

  • Alan G

    This paraghraph intrigued me,

    Part of the letter sent to the clubs reads; ‘We have also had increased reports ….. about groups of cyclists blocking roads by cycling in “pelotons”. In addition, we have had complaints regarding the inappropriate speed of some cyclists in the narrow and winding lanes around the Surrey Hills.’

    Is it a request for us to try and speed up or slow down?

    If everyone who was planning/riding near box hill, drove instead as I think most cyclists are also drivers, what would the road congestion be like then?

  • Matthew P. Chapman

    This is the normall repsonse of the police countrywide, just get used to it. When you are on you are cycling you are on your own so be very careful! The police will always side with the car driver as they prefer lounging around in cars themselves, like most of society a minority cycle so are totally biased.

  • Simon

    CARELESS & INCONSIDERATE DRIVING:
    If a person drives a motor vehicle, on a road, without due care and attention, or without reasonable consideration for other persons using the road, no action will be taken.
    Surrey Police.

  • Matt Paterson

    My observation is that it is a bit harsh but my view is to contact the IAM (institute of advanced motorists)
    because they have a more balanced view as they welcome cycling members aswell as motorists

  • paul

    Was out Friday on Box Hill. Leith Hill, White Downs route.
    Some of the road surfaces are shockingly bad, anyway that’s off topic!
    The drivers I encountered where all considerate bar one, there was only two of us and we rode single file whenever cars approached from behind.
    The was one idiot BMW driver who chose to beep his horn aggressively at us before screeming past us very closely, seemingly annoyed that the road wasn’t wide enough for him to overtake sooner.
    Its this complete intolerance from some motorists that dont see cyclists as legitimate road users that leads them to complain about us. Bottom line is we can only ride so close to the kerb and sometimes they just have to wait to pass, motorists wouldn’t complain if behind a horse, tractor,etc, yet frequently throw tantrums when we’re in front of them.
    Upon receiving these complaints the police should have perhaps responded by telling them that we are entitled to ride, even in large groups, and that maybe they need to be a little more considerate, as lets not forgot, cyclists are the ones getting killed by drivers in increasing numbers – not the other way round.

  • CyclingSilk

    I really do not think Mr Poulton’s apology goes far enough. The video link he supplies majors on James Cracknell and his obsessive interest in cycle helmets (if you get a head injury he implies it is your fault for not wearing a helmet not the fault of the motorist who has run you down and it is you who should be apologising to your family!)
    The fact is that the police handout reveals an underlying motorcentricity amongst many police officers. Mr Paulton needs to address this. It must have taken more than one local officer to produce and distribute this. Cyclists put no significant pressure on the roads. Anybody who comes behind a slower vehicle has to wait for a safe place to overtake. It is not inconsiderate to be in a group or primary position to discourage inconsiderate passes.
    Have Mole Valley police studied this http://www.cycletraining.co.uk/library/website/resources/lib0000000151.pdf

  • dai bananas brother

    gets people going a bit, this, doesn’t it just. Hope they’veall got rear lights in full working order for the darker evenings!

  • dave

    customerservice@surrey.pnn.police.uk

    simply email them and they will get the message!

  • james smith

    Notwithstanding the rights and wrongs of this really blunt and not very bright police tactic. Can I add this overarching point that the cycling community is now a powerful and vociferous lobby. We should use our voice and our new popularity to start batting against these ridiculous 1980′s comments. Local cyclists should gather on Box hill this week and ride up and down it all day until a full apology is received from the local constabulary. We do not “put pressure” on the roads rather we relieve it. I don’t think riding up and down Box hill is illegal and if it is I apologise but lets take this battle to the ignorant.

  • steve clarke

    I agree with Inspector Terri Poulton that road safety should apply to all road users, however this notice sends out a message that it’s just cyclists that are causing problems.
    Yes, there are inconsiderate cyclists, we’ve all seen examples of improper riding and “racing”, and yes I would expect that all of us cyclists have acted in a dangerous manner at times.
    On the other hand most of us have encountered dangerous situations with motorists, examples are passing much too close, pulling out in ones path, driving when on mobile phone, overtaking on blind bends….. the list goes on and on.
    Surrey Police are targeting us cyclists because we are a easy target, we need the CTC, BC and others to fight for our rights and really do something about the poor back up from Police for cyclists in the UK.

  • Richard Fletcher

    Here we go again. Persecution from the anti-cyclist brigade. Just how many motorists does anyone know about that has been issued with a £1,000 fine for driving without due care and attention?…probably none. Even if you’re knocked off your bike, it’s impossible to get the police to be remotely interested in doing anything. Fines are higher for putting the wrong type of rubbish in your bin than they are for killing a cyclist.
    In the UK it isn’t an offence to hit a cyclist with a car and it’s about time that it changed. Motorists should be automatically guilty of an offence for hitting a cyclist, as it is in Spain. This offensive is simply about driving cyclists off the roads. The police don’t have any problem with morons on motorcycles exceeding the speed limit wherever they are riding. But a cyclists doing 25mph, that’s definitely an offence.
    Just how much police time and money has been spent on this? I thought they were short of cash and time. But it seems plenty of time to persecute cyclists. I bet only one complaint was received.

  • stuart stanton

    Book ‘em! book ‘em all!! Whenever I visit London i am hotrrified by the standard of riding and general road courtesy displayed by the majority of cyclists. Leeds is just as bad, though not as obvious as the total numbers concerned are far less., The great journalist Tom Vernon wrote the ‘rules’ for London cyclists in ‘Fat Man through France’., they contained – ‘there are no one-way streets’ – amongst others. This was 30 years ago.

  • Tim Davies

    Ridiculous threats by police responding to pressure from locals for sure. Motorists in the UK are just not used to giving way to much other than horses when on the road. Horse riders are given every respect, a wide berth, a toot of thanks and wave back in thanks themselves. Cyclists are not afforded the same respect. I’ve cycled in most countries in Europe, surprisingly I found Turkey to be the most courteous. Drivers there obviously know the dangers of the road. The problem is predominantly a British attitude one I feel.

  • Keith Bingham

    I am reminded of how the late Ken Warren dealt with what he considered to be police harrassment. Warren was a top Southern BLRC roadman in his day, and had many amusing tales to tell,such as this one.
    He and a companion were riding side-by-side up The Zig Zag Road on Box Hill when a police car came up from behind and a voice from the car called out. “Hey, you two, single out.”
    To which Warren replied, “F… off”.
    “Did you hear me,” shouted the officer leaning out of the car window, ” I said single out.”
    “Did you hear me,” shouted back Warren. “I said, f… off”.
    And before the copper could respond, Warren continued, “What is more,” he shouted, half-turning to the police car now alongside.
    “This is a private road and you have no jurisdiction on it. On top of that, there is a 15mph speed limit which you have exceeded to reach us, because we are riding at 15mph. I have noted your vehicle registration number and will report you.”
    At which point, the officer wound up his window and drove off.

  • Dr. Robert Davis

    This must be a first for CW’s web site: the normally quiet club cyclist reader of CW is – justifiably – voicing anger at this piece of discriminatory policing. Well done to you – I note alomst all the posters have been rightly appalled.

    I also note Inspector Poulton’s coments:
    “An increase in cyclists is putting more pressure on the local roads network but I want to focus my efforts on targeting the minority of poor drivers and cyclists.”.

    Why exactly is an increase in cycling “putting pressure” on the roads (sic) network? Did the Police issue notices during the years of increased motoring in the Surrey hills to drivers?

    Also, the Police should know , from their data on speeding alone, that law breaking is engaged in by at least a substantial minority of motorists. Adding on the normal breaking of the Highway Code by motorists and “poor” driving is engaged in by a lot more than a minority. Most peopler ecognise that inappropriate, careless, rule or law breaking driivng is far moe of a threat to the safety of others than inappropriate etc. cycling. A shame the Polcie don’t.

  • Yoda

    Better-fit that force put up some more signs to tell car drivers to take more care and lookout for cyclist.

    That bit in the statment “…and causing cars to slow down.” the police should be out stopping the bl##dy car drivers for NOT slowing down!

    WTF is this country coming too!!!

  • Bob Lee

    Surrey Chief Constable has obviously had his ear bent at his “Lodge” by the residents of Holmbury St Mary, about “these damned cyclists” and how he “should do something about them”. After all, none of us pay road tax etc.

  • Phil Lee

    There is a huge group of motorists that can be seen travelling towards London from Surrey regularly between 06:30 & 08:30 every weekday.
    They block the roads and make it impossible to make good progress, and dozens of incidents have been reported including death and serious injury.
    Can we expect the police to start targeting these road users for their inconsiderate behaviour?

    What about leafleting them warning that the penalty for causing death by dangerous driving (a more common offence than inconsiderate cycling) carries a penalty of 14 years in jail?
    And can the harassment of cyclists be classed as an obstruction of the highway?

  • Morgan Rees

    Well at least we received a fairly positive response from the local Police. Referring to a comment from Dave Bonner; generally in (mainland) Europe cycling is a far higher profile activity and sport, and consequently people are far more “bike aware & friendly” – and, of course, laws there are more protective of the cyclist. Being, now an ex-pat in Texas (NOT a particularly bike-friendly state, but getting better), I miss riding in the UK – especially in summer when we “enjoy” temperatures in the high 30′sC!!!

  • Ralph godwin

    I echo and earlier comment, let’s bombard the police with complaints about poor or aggressive drivers who endanger our lives. We as cyclists have become so used to it that I guess 99% goes unreported. We should all stand up on this. Ralph Team : a3crg

  • PeterLB

    Cars have to slow down for cyclists (as they do for horses and pedestrians), and the more cyclists there are, the more drivers will have to slow down.

    The fact that Surrey Police are borderline persecuting cyclists for drivers having to slow down is an utter disgrace.

    Cars going slower = safer roads.

    When there are lots of cars on the roads, cars have to slow down also. It’s called a traffic jam. When the Police get reports of dangerous driving, do they contact RAC and AA members telling them not to drive dangerously?

    Surrey Police, hang your heads in shame.

  • Inspector Terri Poulton

    Hello, I am the local Neighbourhood Inspector for the Mole Valley area and thought it would be a good idea to touch base with you all about this.

    I would like to apologise about the wording of the attached card which was produced by a local officer who genuinely thought it would be helpful. We live and learn!

    Whilst I support the message about road safety – this extends to all road users; I have been very clear through the Cycle and Drive SMART initiatives in the local area that we want to support everyone in enjoying our area – cyclists, drivers and pedestrians. You can hear me speak about Cycle SMART at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PhBgVst2944

    An increase in cyclists is putting more pressure on the local roads network but I want to focus my efforts on targeting the minority of poor drivers and cyclists. I hope this message is received as intended – an apology for the blunt, inappropriate card – but also a plea for understanding. Safety and tolerance is the key message and, above all, we want everyone to enjoy our beautiful area.

  • Roland Townson

    If a car driver approaches a busy High Street the driver knows to slow down because the likelihood of there being an obstacle, whether it be another car, pedestrian, or cyclist, is high. Boxhill, and many other Surrey lanes are single lane roads that on weekends can become busy with other users such as cyclists and walkers. This means that to maintain road safety drivers using these roads need to reduce their speed due to the increased likelihood of their being an obstacle in the road. Just by being there in numbers cyclists are forcing drivers to slow down to maintain road safety. The drivers who are complaining are actually complaining that they are being forced to slow down not that the cyclists, who have every right to be there, are behaving badly. Therefore the police should trying to educate car drivers on the need to drive at safer speeds on these busy roads. The fact that they are stopping the cyclists, rather than drivers, shows they themselves do not understand the problem. This is a bit of a worry.

  • Chris

    Robert mate I’m with you all the way.
    Come the revolution I’ll help man the barricade.

    Or are suggesting just emigrating?

  • Rick Robson

    Do the Police have nothing more productive to do? Reminds me of Victoria Police in Australia following the sunday morning groups on Beach Road at 6.30 AM in a HELICOPTER – moitoring large groups of
    riders. The helicopter guys would radio the squad cars to split groups up. Vic Police thought this was a
    much more important job than tackling the gangs / drug lords of Melbourne. I think they actually got more
    complaints from local residents for the Sunday 6.30 AM helicopter over there houses than they ever got about the riders.

    Cyclists the world over are Soft targets by suited Police top brass keen to develop a new initiative to
    boost the chances of keeping their job.

  • Alex

    I think the attidude of the police differs between forces. Some forces do seem to have more of a “harrass the cyclist” approach than others. Looking at recent reports it would apprear that Surrey and Cambridgeshire forces are the worst offenders (this may say something about the quality of recruits, as well as the policy of the force), but others, such as Devon and Cornwall, adopt a moore balanced approach. Just as it’s wrong to tar all cyclists with the same brush, I think its wrong to do the same with the police.

  • Robert

    Unfortunately, the policing in the UK is often little more than mob rule by proxy. A few vociferous ‘Daily Mail Readers’ object to having to slow down when driving and complain to the police. The police then ‘respond to public opinion’ (and their own prejudices), justifying their actions by effectively arguing that anyone who ‘gets in the way’ of the motoring ‘ubermenschen’ is by definition acting in an anti-social manner. Conversely, the police will also respond to resistance from drivers to being prosecuted for breaking the law by, for example, simply refusing to enforce the speed limit unless drivers exceed the legal limit by as much as 10% plus another 9 Mph. Once again, the law of the mob prevails.

    At heart these sort of problems exist because the UK is a highly inequitable, hierarchical, authoritarian and status-orientated country, and whilst motorists constitute a dominant social ‘in-group’, cyclists constitute a low-status ‘out-group’, This fact was highlighted some years ago by a Transport Research Laboratory report called ‘Drivers’ perceptions of cyclists’ which in concluded that many phenomenon, from inconsiderate driving when encountering cyclists to hostility to the tendency to always blame the cyclists in the event of a crash arises from the fact that cyclists are perceived as being ‘different’ and as posing a challenge to the dominant, motor-centric social norm.

    Unless a way could be found of making the UK a less inequitable, hierarchical society, cyclists (along with many other social ‘out-groups’) will probably always be the victims of prejudicial attitudes and injustices, just as they have for the last 100 years and more. Unfortunately the UK seems to be becoming ever more right-wing and authoritarian by the day, so perhaps the only real solution on a personal basis is to move to somewhere somewhat less fascistic in outlook.

  • J Dunn

    That’s the stupidity of this notice – they wouldn’t pursue motorists with the same zeal because it would be unpopular and require more effort.

  • Mark S

    Going after the “soft” targets eh?
    Going on that rather poor effort at a notice ticket it looks like they let the work-experience kid put it together!
    Surely they’d be much better off spending their time and money going after those who operate a few tons of metal inconsiderately and without due care and attention rather then those on 8kg of carbon fibre?

  • Gaz

    In some cases the police may be right, just look at http://www.sillycyclists.co.uk and see how inconsiderate and dangerous some cyclists are, putting them selves and others at risk.

    How ever the Police do need to be careful how they tackle this, it could go very much wrong for them if they start telling us to do x w and z because we can’t slow cars down. Which is obserd, i will slow down other traffic if it means that I am safe, for example if there is a pinch point approaching, a blind bend or sold lane boundary lines, this will keep me and other traffic free of a collision. Nothing against that in the law but by some it might be considered to be inconsiderate.

  • Robert

    Hah,

    Well I don’t think it’s legally enforceable as the notice doesn’t even make sense. The grammar doesn’t indicate who is ‘guilty of an offence’ , we just have two incomplete sentence

  • Dave Bonner

    Nowdays I live in Spain, and find the Spainish motorist gives cyclist lots of room and waits for the right moment to pass. The problem here is the arrogent British motorist. Passing giving no room, and lots of road rage. They seem to hate cyclists. When with a group of expats if they find out your a cyclist its unbeliverable the things they say. Talk to any spanish cyclist who are the worst drivers, they all say the British.
    Dave Bonner

  • Lee Hamilton

    this stinks of harrasment and intimidation by plod! like the cyclist cautioned and charged under the RTA section 24 for carrying his son on an approved frame mounted child seat. we all have the right to use our highways and byways, what does plod want cyclists to do, break the law by cycling on the pavement?

  • Peter D.Reed

    You will never win against the motorist. I agree with the comments already posted. You could of course emigrate or do what I did and move to Devon. There is a Box Hill round every corner on Dartmoor. The TOB was great yesterday, hot and Sunny and thousands out on their bikes Burying their Grandma.

  • Jon

    While this may look like an attack on cyclists, the police have a duty to try to keep the roads safe. I ride on country lanes a lot and while I enjoy riding fast it’s important to think of safety first. It’s tempting especially after watching pro cycling on the TV to go hell for leather or be preoccupied with your average speed, and I think we all need to remember that the public highways are shared by many different users, and their primary purpose is to allow people to get from A to B. We don’t like it when motorsport fans tear around on the roads in cars. And it’s not difficult to keep an eye out for cars behind and ride single file to let them past – it’s much more pleasant riding without a frustrated driver breathing down your neck. There has been an increase in the number of cyclists on the road which means many will have little or no experience of riding in groups and sportives in particular seem to cause to lot of frustration to motorists.

    Our safety depends on a certain extent on the goodwill of other road users, and if we don’t give them due consideration and respect there are going to be more drivers out there with a chip on their shoulder about cyclists. I think the only way forward is to ride responsibly and gain the respect of other road users – this will also help marginalise the cycle haters out there and hopefully make the roads safer for all of us. If we react to this with arrogance and anger we risk losing the battle for hearts and minds.

  • Dale

    Motorist injures or kills a cyclist in Surrey equals ‘slap on the wrist’ for ‘Dangerous Driving’.
    Cyclist delays motorist in Surrey equals ‘£1,000 fine’ for ‘Inconsiderate Cycling’
    Anyone else see irony/injustice in this?

  • Pete

    1wheeljim – I think your suggestion is one that should be taken seriously. Perhaps CW can get behind this and give it some impetus. It’s hard to imagine what kind of riding could possible endanger other people’s lives….. but we’ve all seen driving which poses a very real threat to life and limb.

    An address for Surrey Police please?

  • Richard

    So the police are concerned about groups of cyclists that slow down other traffic. Hmm. Just spent two days travelling from Harrogate to Leeds by train. One of my colleagues did the same journey on the bus. The 25 mile journey for him took 1.5 hours because of the extremely large groups of cars clogging up the roads such that they ground to a halt. The roads in my home town often grind to a halt because of the large groups of cars overloading the transport infrastructure. Perhaps the police should do something about that.

  • Ian E

    This police action is beyond belief. Not withstanding the fact that the government is trying to encourage people to take up a healthy activity (incl cycling), they (the police) should be supporting cyclists by pursuing errant/dangerous motorists, of which there are many who show no consideration for cyclists and place their lifes in danger on a many occasions. The claim that cyclists are riding ‘to fast’ down country lanes is truly laughable, more likely a motorist is travelling too fast down a country lane whilst using it as a ‘rat run’. The vast majority of cyclists try to choose quiet lanes/roads, being aware of the danger and stress of using major/main roads. Seems like we can’t win whatever we do. Pressure should be brought to bear on Surrey police by the main cycling organisations. I, for one, will be contacting British Cycling and the CTC re this matter.

  • Fred Ivory

    The Surrey Hills start at the west end of the North Downs, (Farnham) end somewhere near Maidstone, in the east, I would have thought there would be enough room for every one on and off road, I can understand motorist frustration being caught behind a large group of cyclists, but to me that is just unfortunate, cyclist do not have the M25 to use or M3 or M23 or M26 or M20, why do we build these things (motorways) and motorist don’t use them, the money spent on motorways, I wish I could have a 2% spent on better safer cycle paths,
    I think all cars should be banned at weekends from B roads and can only be used by cars for access only, to beauty spots, not as rat runs, if a car is going slowly up Box Hill, what a view, whats the rush,

  • Paul G

    How are they actually going to enforce this? They’d have to have actual sight of ‘inconsiderate’ cycling; they surely can’t rely on word of mouth(?)… Why couldn’t any police officer who may witnesses ‘bad’ cycling just make the rider aware he is being inconsiderate, without this sort of unecessarily heavy handed threat behind it? In this day and age, when cycling is a viable alternative to fuel and energy usage, this sort of law is severely bereft of equality, and foresight.

  • 1wheeljim

    Can I suggest that for a period of, say, one month, all cyclists in the surrey area complain about ALL instances of dangerous/careless driving to the police. Then they might get a clearer picture of the situation we all face.

  • Two Wheels Good

    Plod needs to brush up on his grammar and go and harrass some real motorised menaces.

  • Dave S

    I was up on Box Hill a few weeks ago and some goon on a ‘racing’ quad bike roared past me on my bike, tried to do a wheelie and flipped it into the trees. How he didn’t take someone with him is a mystery. After dusting himself down, he and his mate extracted the quad bike from the woods and make a quick exit on the damaged machine. Are police handing out leaflets down at Rykers too?

  • JD

    In other news, if you kill someone in a car you’ll get a smaller fine.

  • Kevin Blackburn

    This smacks almost of harassment of cyclists – the Police have obviously had some complaints from held-up motorists, and decided to intimidate/encourage cyclists to stay away. £1,000 fine for cycling inconsiderately – how many times could that be applied to every car driver that cuts us up, doesn’t indicate, gives us less than the EU regulation 1.5m passing, infringes the ‘cycle advance’ box at junctions, parks and drives in cycls lanes – I’ve complained and taken photos of cars in cycle lanes, and had it explained that they are only adbisory – no, any continuous white should not be crossed on a road!….and so on. Its not until a cyclist is hit that police do anything about car drivers, but here they appear to be being pro-actively undermining cyclists rights to ride as per the highway code. If motorists are getting shirty about, they should be dealing with them, not us!!

  • Andrew Roberts

    Riding more than 2 abreast isn’t illegal just advised not too, as for slowing cars down – complete non-story, cars slow cyclists down a lot more around this area, no one is forcing cars to use narrow country lanes/roads when you have the A24 in the area…..

  • Morgan Rees

    A shame they don’t pass out similar letters to motorists