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Norwich launches clampdown on anti-social cyclists

Nearly 200 stopped by police for cycling on pavements or riding without lights

Norwich has become the latest city to launch a crackdown on anti-social cycling, with nearly 200 riders stopped by police in the Earlham Road area for cycling on the pavement or riding without lights.

Police stopped 186 cyclists in total, with five issued with £30 penalty notices after they were caught a second time. Inspector Nigel Richards of the Norfolk Police’s West Centre community policing team told Norwich Evening News: “We have stopped nearly 200 cyclists who have committed offences, both cycling on the pavements and riding without lights at dusk.”

“We have spoken to numerous cyclists and educated them as many are aware of the law or where the cycle path ends,” Inspector Richards continued. However if this warning is ignored then we take a more robust approach and issue a on the spot fine of £30.

“Footpaths are there for the safety of pedestrians and not cyclists. If cyclists do not feel safe riding on busy roads then they should walk with their bicycle on footpaths.”

The initiative was launched after a meeting in October of the Safer Neighbourhood Action Panel and was publicised through posters in local shops and adverts in material published by the University of East Anglia.

The paper highlighted one resident of Earlham Road, Cameron Spencer, who had been hit by a cyclist riding on the pavement, forcing him to take over three weeks off work and use painkilling drugs.

“I walked out of my gate and just felt an impact,” said Mr Spencer. “I felt a shooting pain down one leg, I had no recognition of the bike until it hit me,” he added, saying, “I was on the floor and the guy came off his bike, I was in excruciating pain. But he didn't seem very bothered and just disappeared.
I am very, very angry about it. For three weeks I was in a great deal of pain.”

Mr Spencer told the paper that while he was recovering he was hit by a second cyclist, and that the effects of the accident had contributed to his decision to close down the shop he ran, The Period House Store.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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Tom Amos | 14 years ago

Average number of pedestrians killed by cyclists per annum : 2 (two too many, I agree)

Average number of cyclists killed on Britain's roads by motorists per annum : 150

It's great to know that the police have their priorities right and are doing all they can to help us cyclists.

I agree that there are many bad cyclists out there but let's get some sense of proportion on this!

Many "cyclists" riding on pavements are just kids from what I've observed. Yes it is wrong but don't lump us all together Mr Plod.

Tony Farrelly | 14 years ago

Spot-on I'd say AdamML

AdamML | 14 years ago

I used to live in Norwich, and a lot of the problem with reckless cycling was caused by students at the University. I'm not trying to shove all the blame there (I was a student too) but there should be an awareness campaign at UEA.

I saw a small child missed by an inch or so by a red-light-jumper at almost the same spot as Mr. Spencer was hit.

As cyclists we want respect from drivers and pedestrians - we ALL have to work together to earn it.

Barry Fry-up | 14 years ago

pity they're not offering them free lights like some of the other plod round the country. my take is that if there's 200 cyclists ignoring the law then there's a problem and the police should act. we'd expect them to if it was 200 drivers ignoring the law.

hammergonewest | 14 years ago

But the police are in a bit of a bind on this one aren't they - if local people feel unsafe because of people cycling on the pavement (which is illegal btw) and someone has been injured they can't really ignore the problem can they?

therevokid | 14 years ago

you'll notice that "anti social" cyclists get targeted
'cos the plod can't catch anyone else !!!

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