Thousands of cyclists have taken to the streets of Edinburgh to call for Scotland’s roads to be made safer.
The Pedal on Parliament campaign wants improved funding and better infrastructure.
Families with small children were joined by politicians and marchers for the mass bike ride from the Meadows down the Royal Mile.
See Pedal On Parliament website for further details:- http://pedalonparliament.org
There were so MANY cyclists that it took a good twenty minutes before my part of the procession started moving….
The Pedal on Parliament group has an eight-point manifesto asking for cycling to be integrated into local transport strategies and improved road traffic law and enforcement.
Organiser David Brennan said: “It’s been a lot of work putting this all together but it will be worth it if my kids can have the freedom to ride their bikes growing up.
“We’d like to see organisations across Scotland and the government working together to create a proper road map for safer cycling and walking – not just a vague vision or an educational initiative to teach children how to ride in traffic.
The “queue” of good natured friendly and chatting cyclists was so long – you couldn’t see to the end of it….
Even the police – who were responsible for closing the roads for the procession were smiling and shaking their heads at just how many of us there were….
Proceeding up Middle Meadow Walk and onto Lauriston Place
C’mon people – time to go!
Cycling down the High Street , At Parliament Square
Looking back at the many still to come past St. Giles Cathedral.
NOTE the cobbles…..
Needless to say, I duly did my bit for the cause by flinging my bike wheel into the nearest pothole at the side of a drainage grate on the Royal Mile and performing a beautiful somersault in slow motion to land ,in flowing sequence on my head, shoulder and back in quick succession.
Concentrating so much on keeping my speed down and not veering into the paths of my fellow cyclists as we slowly, ever so slowly crowded down the bumpy high street, I didn’t see the pothole until the front of my bike dropped suddenly and my momentum slowly, gracefully but with the cold certainty of the laws of physics started the ascent of my rear end heading skywards, even as I was still working out what was happening. I’m sure there were loads of cameras around to capture the moment, you know. – Never before has a bike crash looked so smooth, so flowing, so slow motion and so laughably tragic. I’d never thought of looking at the clouds in the sky framed between my legs and bike frame up until that moment. I’m sure it was a beautiful moment
A police officer at the side of the street, got off his bike and came to my aid. I was swiftly untangled from my frame, I checked myself over, checked the bike over and swiftly dusted myself down. The Procession had come to a temporary halt behind me so I swiftly remounted and moved off, with no injuries apart from acute embarrassment. A Pedal on Parliament warden had taken up a standing position with flag to prevent any of my fellow cyclists from repeating my manoeuvre so deftly delivered.
Needless to say I don’t have any photo’s of this time in the procession – but if any one else does – let me know and I’ll get a copy and post it up for full and fair reporting of the event.
The counter had hit 2417 when I went past…but there was another third of the crown yet to come after me….
So what do you call a collection of stationary cyclists? A college, a gaggle, a collect? It can’t be a pelaton – as they aren’t moving…answers on a postcard please….
There were a few important speeches about the reasons why we were gathered there ….some clearly audible …many less so.
Good to be there – as the issues being raised are vital to good sustainable transport planning for Scotlands future.
For a quick summary of proper reporting of the event, see the following :-
BBC News Website and video clip
Written Submission to Parliament
Some popular media reports:-
Good photo’s and a summary of Critical Mass’s preparation for the event