Human machinery in motion
STEVE ( HAYWOOD), I LOVE your articles but I am appalled at your rant over the cyclists ( Jan).
When boating in Birmingham it was a joy to see thousands of cyclists using the towpath for their journey to work in the morning and on their return in the evening. Also lots of students on their way to university.
Concerning safety, yes there are a few who travel too fast but most cyclists are courteous and
understanding in their behaviour. I think what is needed is a bit more education for the cyclists and a bit more acceptance from us boaters.
And what about the safety of the cyclists? So many get injured and even killed on the roads, so it is refreshing to see lines of human machinery travelling in absolute safety. I frequently cycle from Bedworth to Coventry Canal basin (not Lycra style) and it is exhilarating.
Concerning the towpath surface; gravel, pebble and grass can be extremely slippery for cyclists and
could be the cause of some near misses you mention. In my experience it is not the cyclists but the walkers who seem to ignore protocol, sometimes walking four in a row and however many times you ring the bell, they seem oblivious to the slow-moving cyclists behind them. Perhaps some cyclists shout because of ear phones and hearing aids in walkers.
Perhaps we ought to bring back horses and tow ropes, I suppose we would be overloaded with manure then!
IAN RANDLE, via email