Warning that cycling could be banned if people don’t ride responsibly this weekend

‘Make sure bikes continue to be seen to be part of the solution to this crisis’ – Chris Boardman

British Cycling has warned that the ‘privilege’ of riding a bike could be removed if people fail to observe instructions on social distancing this weekend.

In an open letter(link is external) published on Friday night, British Cycling CEO Julie Harrington said it was “heartening” that the Government had so far protected people’s right to ride a bike, but warned that this must not be taken for granted.

Government advice on staying at home currently lists as an exception, “one form of exercise a day, for example, a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household.”

It goes on to say that, “even when doing these activities, you should be minimising time spent outside of the home and ensuring you are 2 metres apart from anyone outside of your household.”

Despite this, some have undertaken group rides or arranged to meet friends midway through a ride. Others have used their daily ride to cover great distances, arguing that the guidelines don’t specify a time limit.

Daily exercise rules: current cycling dos and don’ts

Harrington said: “People on bikes were not the only culprits in last weekend’s mass dash to the outdoors but, despite strong guidance from ourselves and others, too many chose to ignore the Prime Minister’s instructions on social distancing, continuing to ride in groups and meet in cafes for a mid-ride chat.

“This isn’t just irresponsible, it is putting people’s lives at risk. A repeat of that this weekend risks further Government measures to take away the privilege of riding a bike for all of us and now more than ever, it is not one we can afford to lose.”

Greater Manchester’s cycling commissioner, Chris Boardman, urged people to, “make sure bikes continue to be a part of the solution to this crisis, and are seen to be part of the solution.”  

After highlighting key workers’ use of bikes for essential journeys, he said: “For the rest of us, [bikes] are a way to go and get supplies, take essential exercise and, crucially, give us a mental break each day, helping us ensure prolonged isolation is actually sustainable.

“But for bikes to remain a force for good and help us get through this, this is how it’s got to work: only ride alone or with people that you live with and stay at least two metres away from anybody that you meet. Do not, under any circumstances, ride in a group.

“As per government instructions, only go out once [to exercise] each day. And finally, be sensible. Only ride on routes that you know well and that are well within your ability.”

He advised people to, “obey these rules as if your life, and the lives of others, depend on it – because they do.”

Ripe’s Winged Wheel: Good News

The CTC Winged Wheel plaque, which used to be on the old Lamb Inn at Ripe, has been restored and is now mounted on the wall at the front of the Ripe Village Stores. The above photo was taken by a lone cyclist who was passing through Ripe on Wednesday afternoon: Dave Sutton.

It’s almost two years ago when I took a picture of the derelict pub and posted an entry to the blog about the Winged Wheel. These cast-iron plaques, two feet in diameter, were issued by the CTC about 120 years ago to approved inns and hotels. The Lamb was clearly an approved inn so it’s seems apt that it should be transferred to the Village Stores opposite which has a superb cyclist friendly café inside. The plaque has been restored by members of the East Sussex CTC.

The café is, of course, closed during the Coronavirus outbreak but I’m sure that when the restrictions are lifted plenty of cyclists will be visiting the café as soon as it reopens. I know that the café proprietor is intending to have a ‘Winged Wheel’ event one Sunday at which local cycling clubs will be invited. We’ll certainly be there.

STATEMENT ABOUT CORONAVIRUS AND THE SUSPENSION OF CSH ACTIVITIES – updated 24/03/2020

The committee has been closely monitoring advice regarding the coronavirus/COVID 19 situation. [click for more info]

Cycling UK  was updated on 23rd March 2020 

British Cycling was updated on 23rd March 2020

Cycling UK state:

This means it remains advisable for people to cycle for their health, fitness and well-being, but in line with our previous guidance, you should only do this alone or with members of your household unless any of them have reason to self-isolate.

Under no circumstance should you cycle or take part in any cycling activity in groups.

This is critical to stop the coronavirus disease spreading between households.

updated 24/03/2020 – Cycle Seahaven Secretary

Suspension of CSH activities

The committee has been closely monitoring advice regarding the coronavirus/COVID 19 situation.

Cycling UK and British Cycling have today issued press releases suspending cycling activities initially until April 30. This includes recreational riding as well as events. 

Cycling UK state ‘As a result of this revised guidance, Cycling UK has taken the decision to ask all its member and affiliate groups not to run any group activities, including club runs or events.

This is in line with advice from the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the UCI, with the aim of ensuring the maximum protection of people across the world’.

It is therefore with regret that Cycle Seahaven is suspending all of its activities pending updated information to the contrary.

Please note that Cycling UK within the same press release also state ‘However, people should not avoid cycling altogether as it remains a great way to keep fit and active and is a good way to boost immunity.’

We leave you to make an informed decision on whether to ride or not. If you choose to do so we would recommend:

1. If riding with others you keep groups as small as possible and ride with at least 10-foot gaps between riders.

2. You avoid café’s, pubs in line with current government advice.

3. You ride less technically challenging routes to avoid the risk of crashing or injury that may place an unnecessary burden on the NHS.

The committee is exploring ways of utilising club resources to support those vulnerable members in our communities. Further updates to follow.

Look after yourselves and hopefully, normal service will be resumed in the not-too-distant future.

All the best,

The Cycle Seahaven Committee.

Statement about Coronavirus and advice for Cycling UK groups and volunteers

Coronavirus is in the headlines everywhere at the moment but what does this mean for cycling? We take the health and well-being of our members, supporters, groups and volunteers very seriously so we’re currently following Government and NHS guidance very closely.
 
Cycle Seahaven takes a similar view to that of Cycling UK. The health and safety of our members and guests is a priority. We will follow current advice regarding club activities. Please keep an eye out on this website, CSH calender and social media for more information. 
 

Statement from Cycling UK

As the national cycling charity Cycling UK’s aim is to support the UK’s population to cycle. This stays true during this period of Covid-19 effecting the UK. Above all the safety and welfare of Cycling UK’s staff, volunteers, participants at our rides and events, beneficiaries of our cycling programmes and the general public is always our main priority. Therefore, Cycling UK is running activities following the latest Government advice and following best practice to minimise risk.

Cycling UK are constantly monitoring the situation and taking advice from Government, health sector and partners. 

Advice for Cycling UK groups and volunteers

Cycling is a fun and healthy activity that brings people together to share a love of the great outdoors, often accompanied by the pleasure of stopping for a quick coffee and cake and a pleasant catch-up. We have over a 1000 groups and they run a large array of events, rides and activities every year.

So what should we be doing in the light of the COVID-19 outbreak?

Current guidance is that, for now, most of us can carry on normally. However, there are certain precautions that must be taken to minimise the spread of the virus. For example, by:

  • catching coughs and sneezes in a tissue and throwing them away immediately
  • washing hands with soap and water regularly for at least 20 seconds (or using alcohol-based hand sanitiser if not available)
  • avoiding close contact with people who are unwell

Symptoms

Some of the symptoms of Coronavirus are:

  • a cough
  • a high temperature
  • shortness of breath

If you have any of these symptoms please do not attend any Cycling UK ride, group or activity and follow the advice on the NHS website. 

Self-isolation

There’s a chance that you might be asked to self-isolate, which means staying at home and avoiding public places and Cycling UK led activities.

Further updates

We’ll continue to monitor the situation carefully and will update groups and areas via the website and Velocheer, our volunteer newsletter. If any further action is needed, such as the cancellation of rides and events, we will contact groups and event organisers directly.

If you have any questions, please get in touch with the Volunteering Team or the Groups Engagement Officer on 01483 238338 or via groups@cyclinguk.org.

This advice was last updated on Friday 13 March 2020.

Peacehaven Community School promotes cycling in the community

A fantastic community initiative has been boosted by Peacehaven Community School and Sustrans – the charity that makes it easier for people to walk and cycle.

Peacehaven Community School have donated 25 mountain bikes to Sustrans for use at the Peacehaven Cycle Hub, a facility set up to encourage cycling in and around Peacehaven.

Josh Burns, a PE teacher at PCS realised that the school bike fleet presented a fantastic opportunity for children at the school to use and was keen to get as many pupils out on the bikes as possible. So, working with local Sustrans Officer Jamie Lloyd, the school agreed to donate the bikes for use by the community. Pupils from the school will be given membership cards to the Hub so that they can access the bikes at weekends and in the school holidays.  The bike fleet will be managed and maintained by Sustrans, and will be available to other bicycle user groups in the area. 

The Hub is located in the Big Park, Peacehaven, just a few minutes walk from the school and is easily accessible by pupils from the school and the wider community. The Hub is funded by East Sussex County Council to encourage active travel in the community.  It is available for any community group to use and serves to promote sustainable transport and healthy lifestyles.

East Sussex Cycle Training, one of the key partners in the hub, have provided Bikeability training for children at the school, as part of the partnership. 87 pupils received training in cycle skills to help boost confidence when cycling. One of the pupils from the school wrote a speech in which he praised the quality of the Bikeability lessons; “The teachers and instructors were amazing ensuring our safety. It was such a fun and interesting experience, we all enjoyed it so much. It was also very interesting learning about road safety, because it is important to know what to do on the road”

Jamie Lloyd said “This is a great opportunity to get these excellent mountain bikes into regular use by the local community. Peacehaven is an excellent place for cycling, with links to The Egrets Way and South Downs Way and I am delighted that local children can now access a good quality bike to explore the local area” he went on to say “these bikes are not only for local children, we will be offering community bike rides for all members of the local community from the middle of April and any member of the local community would be welcome to join us and these bikes will be available for them as well”

Josh Burns, the PE teacher from Peacehaven Community School who was instrumental in the delivery of the bike project said “It has been a pleasure liaising with Jamie from Sustrans. I am excited to see the impact these bikes will have for our students and their families in the local community.” Josh continued “As a school we value the opportunity we can provide for our students to live active and healthy lives. We also value the impact these opportunities create for our local community and always look to grow and develop our network and contributions within it. This is a big part of our ethos and values as a Community School.”

At the official handover of the bicycles, students from the school were joined by the Head teacher, Darren Warner-Swann and the Executive Head teacher – Liza Leung as well as representatives from Peacehaven Town Council, Sustrans Officers, Bikeability Instructors and representatives from Cycle Seahaven.

Guy Reynolds, Chairman of Cycle Seahaven, said this was a great initiative that could serve as a catalyst towards other community-based projects. This will give the Cycle Hub Stakeholders an opportunity to explore getting the local youth involved in projects such as Dr Bike (a free bike safety check service) or group rides into the South Downs National Park.

To Find out More about activities happening at The Peacehaven Cycle Hub contact Jamie Lloyd: jamie.lloyd@sustrans.org.uk

Twitter: @PeacehavenHub

Web: http://bigparksproject.org.uk/peacehaven-cycle-hub/

Facebook: www.facebook.com/ActiveTravelES/

Cycle Seahaven: https://cycleseahaven.org.uk/

Peacehaven Community School: http://www.phcs.org.uk/

Photo kindly provided by Peacehaven Community School with relevant consent to publish.

Reduce the risk of your bike getting stolen with a ‘Geo-fence’.

Geozone – Are you protected?

I last wrote about criminals using Strava to identify high-value bikes and their storage locations in June 2018. Over the last few weeks, I’ve read numerous social media posts about high-value bikes thefts from garages in close proximity to Seaford. So, at the risk of being repetitive, I thought it might be worth reminding people how to create a geofence to combat the problem. This article is specifically Strava orientated but I’m sure most tracking apps have a similar feature. 

Creating a Privacy Zone

On the website, go to your Settings page by hovering over your profile picture in the top right and selecting “Settings”.

Click on the Privacy tab on the left side of the page.

Enter a location in the text field provided under “Hide your house/office on your activity maps”, select the size of the privacy radius, and click “Create Privacy Zone.”

https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000173384-Privacy-Zones

How it Works

The portion of your activity that starts or stops within your privacy zone will be hidden from other Strava athletes who view your activity. You will be able to see data inside your privacy zone, but other athletes will not.

  • If you stop in a privacy zone during the middle of an activity, this portion will not be hidden.
  • Your privacy zone will be automatically applied to all past and future activities.
  • GPS location-based lat/long coordinates can be used in place of a street address for cases where there is no street address.
  • Only one privacy zone can be applied to the start or end point for each activity. So if you have multiple, overlapping privacy zones, only one will be applied to each start or end point.
  • If a friend starts their activity from within your privacy zone, the portion that began in your zone will not be hidden on their activity.
  • You will not appear on any segment leaderboard that starts/stops within your Privacy Zone and you cannot hold or earn any KOMs/CRs on those segments. Removing a Privacy Zone will reinstate your segment matches and any associated KOMs/CRs.
  • Your Privacy Zone will be respected when you share on Facebook.

Manage Followers & Block Athletes

From your profile page, you can easily manage your current followers from the “Following” tab. When you block an athlete, it stops him/her from following you again, seeing certain Profile details, or accessing your activities. You will be removed from his/her list of followers and Activity Feed. Someone you’ve blocked will be able to see your activity entries in public areas like segment leaderboards, club feeds, and segment explore.

https://support.strava.com/hc/en-us/articles/115000173484

Save your trails before they are lost for good

Over 10,000 miles of paths across England and Wales are at risk of being lost forever unless we make an effort to put them on the map. Cycling UK campaigns officer Sophie Gordon explains how we can save them before they disappear.

Whether you use them for riding, running or walking the dog, our public paths are a gateway to adventure – a way to take time out, connect with nature and explore new places. They bring to life our history and heritage, your path could be an old Roman road or a way used by pilgrims to travel to church. 

However, many of these routes that have been used for centuries aren’t officially recorded on the map, and if they aren’t added by the cut-off date of 2026, they could be lost forever. 

Identifying and recording these lost ways is a huge task, but by combining efforts with individuals and groups all over the country, you can help make sure they are put on the map. 

The clock is ticking 

The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 (CRoW Act) brought in several improvements to public access, like allowing open access on foot on some areas of land and promoting strategic planning of rights of way networks. It also introduced a cut-off date of January 2026 for any rights of way created before 1949 to

be added to the definitive map (the legal record of public rights of way), so the public right to use them would be officially recognised. If these historic paths are not recorded, the legal right to use them will be extinguished in 2026. 

Find out more about how we got to this point. 

Many historic paths may be in frequent use by the public already, but as they are not recorded as rights of way, the landowner is able to close them off at any time. Others might be forgotten and overgrown, but could potentially be a useful route. 

This is particularly significant for off-road cycling and horse riding due to the fragmented nature of the bridleway network. There are many places where adding historic rights of way to the map could form a crucial link between existing rights of way. 

There are other cases where rights of way were incorrectly recorded as footpaths but actually carry higher rights, for example where they were previously used as a road for horses and carriages. Making sure these are recorded correctly could open up more rights of way for cycling.

Adding rights of way to the map 

Proving that a right of way exists involves gathering evidence from historic maps. Any route shown on old maps as a public road or bridle path that doesn’t appear on current Ordnance Survey maps could be a contender. 

Ever spotted one of those odd bridleways that suddenly turn into a footpath at a parish boundary? Chances are the footpath was incorrectly recorded when the council first produced their definitive map, and actually carries higher rights. 

The more evidence you can find to support your claim, the greater the chance of success. Once you’ve gathered all your evidence, you can put in an application to the local authority for a Definitive Map Modification Order (DMMO). 

Then sit back and pat yourself on the back, but don’t hold your breath – councils have a large backlog of applications and some take years to go through. 

Help and resources 

Researching historic rights of way may seem like a bit of an undertaking, but the British Horse Society and Ramblers have produced some great information and online tools to help steer you through and make life easier.  

Rather than reinventing the wheel, we’ve gathered all the resources here in one place so they are easy to find. 

Changing the status of rights of way

Cycling UK’s briefing is a good place to start for an overview of the processes for recording and upgrading rights of way.

British Horse Society – Project 2026 

  • BHS’s Project 2026 is designed to help groups and individuals start researching and recording lost rights of way, and is as relevant for cyclists as it is for horse riders.  
  • Their Project 2026 toolkit is an excellent place to start for a step-by-step guide to researching historic routes. 
  • Once you’re ready to dive in, there is also a more detailed guide with everything you could wish to know about doing the research and making the application. 
  • To share information and avoid duplicating efforts, BHS has created a mapping tool to help gather evidence and mark routes that an application has been made for. 
  • Financial support is available to recover any costs incurred in researching and making an application, and there are also training sessions for a systematic approach to researching historic rights of way. Both of these are available for anyone researching lost routes, not just BHS members. 

The man behind all of this is Will Steel, BHS’ 2026 project manager. He told us why it is so essential that these routes are protected: 

“Project 2026 is so important as it could be our last chance to safeguard thousands of rights of way that will otherwise be lost at the cut-off date of 1 January 2026.  

“Protecting these routes will help people to get out and about – on a horse or bike, driving a carriage or walking – and experience the natural environment avoiding the ever-busier road network.   

“The missing routes can often be key links in the minor highway network that also provide an opportunity to meet wider objectives around active and sustainable travel. I would really encourage anyone interested to get involved before it is too late.” 

Ramblers – Don’t Lose Your Way campaign 

Jack Cornish, Don’t Lose Your Way programme manager, explained his passion for lost rights of way and why you should get involved:  

“Our paths are one of our most precious assets. They connect us to our landscapes, and to our history and the people who formed them over the centuries.  

“If we lose our paths, a little bit of our past goes with them. This is our only opportunity to save thousands of miles of rights of way and time is running out.  

“Joining our group of citizen geographers is a really easy way to help and by doing so, you’ll become part of the movement that puts these paths back on the map for generations to come.” 

What’s the significance of 2026?

The National Parks and Access to the Countryside Act 1949 placed a legal requirement on all local authorities in England and Wales to create a definitive map of public rights of way in their area. This process took a long time (decades in some cases), and many rights of way were left off or incorrectly recorded.

The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 aimed to create some certainty by defining a date when the definitive maps would be deemed ‘complete’ and no more historic rights of way could be added. This was set as 1 January 2026. Any rights of way that existed before 1949 but have not been added to the definitive map by then will be extinguished and the public right to use them will be lost.

In 2001 the Government set up the Discovering Lost Ways project as a systematic research programme to ensure that the definitive maps would be fully complete by the cut-off date. However, the lengthy bureaucracy involved with processing claims for historic rights of way meant that six years later the project was deemed unviable, having not achieved very much in the time since. So the task of researching lost ways and submitting claims was left to volunteers.

The Deregulation Act 2015 was designed to make the process simpler, but five years later it still hasn’t been brought into effect. 

Cyclist settles case for £30,000 after hitting pedestrian who was looking at phone

Cyclist faced threat of ruinous legal costs despite judge ruling both parties equally to blame.

A cyclist who knocked over a woman who was looking at her mobile phone while crossing a road and was then threatened with financially ruinous legal costs has settled the case.

Both the cyclist, Robert Hazeldean, a garden designer, and the pedestrian, Gemma Brushett, who works in finance and also ran yoga retreats, were left unconscious after the rush-hour collision in July 2015.

Last year a judge ruled that both were equally to blame for the accident on a busy junction near London Bridge, but only Brushett was entitled to a payout because she had put in a claim and Hazeldean had not.

The case exposed how vulnerable uninsured cyclists are to expensive civil claims if they are involved in accidents.

Brushett’s lawyers had claimed costs of £112,000 – a sum that would have left Hazeldean facing bankruptcy since he was uninsured. The claim prompted Hazeldean’s supporters to set up a GoFundMe appeal that raised more than £59,000 from more than 4,000 people.

On Monday, Hazeldean tweeted that he had now agreed to settle the case for £30,000 on top of damages of £4,300 and his own costs of more than £25,000. The final settlement still left him £2,979 out of pocket, but avoided the financial ruin he feared last year.

In an email to the Guardian, Hazeldean said: “It’s not the result I was hoping for, but everything was spiralling and the risk of being bankrupted regardless of the outcome was too high. I felt I didn’t really have a choice.”

He wanted to settle the case for less and donate any surplus from the GoFundMe appeal to the charity ActionAid UK.

Hazeldean said he felt no bitterness towards Brushett, but was angered by the compensation system.

He said that because he decided against making a counter-claim against Brushett, he had no means of recovering his own costs. Under a system introduced in 2013 called “qualified one-way cost shifting”, if someone involved in accidents does not put in a counter-claim, they can be liable to pay damages and legal costs.

If Hazeldean had been insured, Brushett’s lawyers could have claimed a maximum of only £6,690 in costs.

Hazeldean said the support he had received had been “incredibly touching”, adding: “I was struck by how many said it could easily have been them. Not just that they could be involved in an accident, but that they could have spent four hellish years being dragged inexorably towards bankruptcy.”

He said the compensation system “desperately needs reforming” and in the meantime, he urged cyclists to insure themselves.

Cycle Seahaven is an affiliated member of Cycling UK. They provide various cycle insurance packages