The number of adults cycling on pedestrian footpaths near and through Horsham town centre has reached invasive proportions of a wholly unacceptable level.
I was witness to a hefty cycling adult male verbally berating a man about 60 years old, who refused to jump aside at the sound of a bicycle bell being sounded in the Albion Way pedestrian underpass who then informed this cyclist that the underpass was a No Cycling zone, and that he should be walking.
The cyclist then argued that cycling was permitted and that the underpass had been separated into two lanes, one for pedestrians and one for cyclists and the pedestrian asked him to point this out, and as the man cycled up the slope towards the Carfax he told the pedestrian to go home and (expletively) grow up, to which the pedestrian replied to him to do likewise, learn to read and study the Highway Code.
Then it became apparent that following him was his family and even the children demonstrated more politeness, maturity and common sense.
It seems that adult cyclists who blatantly demonstrate their utter contempt for the law and the safety of themselves and those around them, and justify their actions by berating and verbally browbeating decent and law abiding citizens who are prepared to stand up for their rights, are not only bereft of their powers of reasoning; but moreover, so intellectually challenged that they simply cannot even get the gist of the phrase ‘Pedestrian Underpass’ or ‘Pedestrian Footpath’ (the clues are in the words ‘pedestrian’ and ‘footpath’ for those who can’t grasp the concepts).
Let it be stated here quite unequivocally – there is no cycling in the pedestrian underpass beneath Albion Way nor in the Carfax nor West Street.
There never will be provision for cycling in the said underpass because it is an enclosed space and the Carfax and West Street are pedestrian precincts by their very nature, whether there are ‘No Cycling’ signs or not.
The sole purpose for which pedestrian footpaths and pedestrianised areas have been developed ought to speak volumes by their very nature and design. Pedestrians know it – why don’t some cyclists?
Fair enough to state that adults transporting children and toddlers learning to ride should be legally exempt from cycling on pedestrian footpaths only, given the design and nature of the local roads; so placing that aside, there is absolutely no excuse whatsoever for grown, apparently mature adults demonstrating contempt for the law and having a ‘couldn’t care less’ attitude to fellow citizens who have the unabridged right to walk in peace on the public footpaths in and around Horsham, without being verbally berated and intimidated by cyclists who are obviously intellectually challenged!
Isn’t it about time Horsham District Council and West Sussex County Council produced Town Cycling Route Maps to complement out of town cycle routes, and place vandal proof ‘No Cycling’ signs in prominent places where their message cannot possibly be ignored, and then introduce hefty fines to those who break these rules, with the immediate confiscation of the bicycle(s) until the fine has been paid?
What price everyone’s safety?
I writes as a pedestrian and cyclist.
Nutbourne Court, Horsham