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CyclingMikey wishes Ashley Neal would "leave me alone" as YouTube driving instructor uploads another video criticising his approach

In his latest "Ashley's Analysis" video the footballer-turned-driving instructor questioned Mikey's riding around pedestrians, arguing it is "concerning" if his followers copy...

Ashley Neal — son of former Liverpool and England footballer Phil Neal — has uploaded another video, this time questioning fellow YouTube road safety figure CyclingMikey's riding around pedestrians.

The Liverpool-based driving instructor shared the video — which included two pieces of footage originally uploaded by CyclingMikey, real name Mike van Erp — with his 134,000 subscribers as part of his "Ashley's Analysis" series and said he has "concerns that with such a large following, people copy some of his behaviour".

In the video, Neal criticised Mikey's decision-making around pedestrians in one incident in south-west London's Richmond Park as well as another outside London Paddington Station, saying "social media is an influential place and content creators need to take great care with the content they produce because a lot of people listen".

The driving instructor told his viewers that Mikey rang his bell at pedestrians on a shared-use path as "a way of saying 'get out of my way'" and hinted that he should not have told the woman that she should be walking at the side of the path.

However, in response, Mikey said he "didn't mind waiting for her" and only "took offence at her being angry with the other cyclist" who had passed the walkers seconds earlier.

The road safety campaigner who reports law-breaking drivers using their mobile phones behind the wheel also said he wishes Neal would "leave me alone" but is "mildly amused by him having to use me to create content, perhaps he doesn't have enough of his own creativity".

> "People need to see justice being done": CyclingMikey says camera cyclists suffer online abuse because some motorists "feel they have the right to drive how they want"

Neal praised Mikey's earlier "nice use of the bell" with a pedestrian who moved to side of the path to let him pass, saying "everything was dealt with nicely here" in a "shared space where the pedestrians are more vulnerable, especially with a young child".

However, as the clip develops, Neal suggested the second group of pedestrians had legitimate reason to be upset with the "close pass" of the cyclist riding ahead of Mikey and criticised his interaction with the group while passing.

"If we think of things from this lady's perspective just for a second," Neal said. "She has just been close passed, then told she should be moving out of the way for cyclists when, in effect, she was maybe only taking her primary position so any pass of her and her group could be done and should be done safely. Was she just being awkward?"

In the second video Neal analyses, he takes issue with Mikey warning a cyclist about waiting on her phone by a junction as a bus turns left and blames the rider for not making it a "non-event" when a taxi driver "pulls out when it probably shouldn't have".

These incidents precede the main portion of the video in which Mikey argues with a pedestrian who stepped out in front of him when the lights were green for traffic.

Neal accused Mikey of "trying to create content just for views" before pointing out two cyclists rolling through the red light at walking pace in the background of the shot.

"You cannot criticise everyone else bar from your own group," Neal suggested, less than two minutes after the footage of Mikey telling the phone-using cyclist to be more careful. 

> CyclingMikey ends up on car bonnet during confrontation with angry motorist

"It's like me not calling out driving instructors when I see them doing something wrong," Neal continued. "So what is my reason behind releasing this video? Primarily, it is to show Mikey there are alternative ways to deal with things. His following is large and his outreach is great and it is concerning if people take up a similar mindset.

"If we are ever going to truly make the roads a better place we all need to work together, follow the rules and always think of things from other people's perspectives."

Mikey brushed off the video, saying: "I just wish he'd leave me alone. I want nothing to do with these people. I'm mildly amused by him having to use me to create content, perhaps he doesn't have enough of his own creativity."

Neal has previously said he "wholeheartedly" disagrees with the approach taken by Mikey, this his second video about the cycling safety campaigner who counts Guy Ritchie and Chris Eubank among the list of phone-using drivers he has reported to the Metropolitan Police. 

"What Mikey has done is actually rallied many cyclists to take a similar reporting approach," Neil said in a video uploaded last May. "This may have a positive impact nationally on stopping people using their mobile phones, but honestly, I think it's created a different problem. I've actually asked Mikey about this on his videos before but he didn't respond.

"Quite often you can see on the footage while he's challenging the motorist for contravening the keep left bollard, cyclists doing exactly the same. Now, I understand that anyone driving a tonne's worth of metal is going to do a hell of a lot more damage than anyone riding a bike, but with the speeds involved at this junction and at this crossing area, honestly, it becomes a lot less relevant.

"Some motorists think because of the lack of requirement for number plates and licences to ride a bicycle, cyclists are getting away with things that motorists don't."

Dan is the road.cc news editor and has spent the past four years writing stories and features, as well as (hopefully) keeping you entertained on the live blog. Having previously written about nearly every other sport under the sun for the Express, and the weird and wonderful world of non-league football for the Non-League Paper, Dan joined road.cc in 2020. Come the weekend you'll find him labouring up a hill, probably with a mouth full of jelly babies, or making a bonk-induced trip to a south of England petrol station... in search of more jelly babies.

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107 comments

Avatar
Andrewbanshee replied to iandusud | 1 year ago
4 likes

I too have experienced this. No matter how I communicate my presence it is not heard, and then a jump sidewards as if cattle prodded. I always slow down too and take extra care.
It is easy to become distracted and not hear your immediate surroundings though, or be in deep thoughts, which is why some people go for walks of course.
Last night whilst cycling through a village I was on a narrow lane, cars parked in the incoming lane when a driver, having seen me decided to drive at me anyway, and scream at me to get out of their way. I obviously responded in kind.
I can tell you that if this driver was cycling, running, or walking, they would still be an arrogant tw...

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eburtthebike | 1 year ago
6 likes

If using a hands-free phone is distracting, how distracting is it to read out a script while you're driving?  I suspect that it is quite distracting, and not something anyone concerned about driving safely would do, but hey AN knows best.  Of course he does, he's better than anyone else.

As for criticising Mikey for ringing his bell at the rather aggressive pedestrian woman, she clearly wasn't interested in the safety of the child or herself, otherwise she wouldn't have forced Mikey to ride between them.  She appeared to be only interested in asserting her right to walk wherever she deemed fit.  As AN himself says, we've got to share and behave safely, but he doesn't seem to apply that logic to pedestrians.

I've always wondered about that; why pedestrians on shared use paths almost always split up to both sides, not to one side, which would make things easier and safer for everyone.

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ChuckSneed | 1 year ago
2 likes

Love Mikey, but when you spend your life criticising people you have to learn to take it too. I don't criticise because I know I can't take it.

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cycle92 replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago
5 likes

I keep saying to Mikey he should critique some of Ashley's videos. The difference is, Ashley is open to this as he says, we learn from our mistakes. 

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JustTryingToGet... replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes
cycle92 wrote:

I keep saying to Mikey he should critique some of Ashley's videos. The difference is, Ashley is open to this as he says, we learn from our mistakes. 

No one talking bollocks has the rights to someone else's time.
AN occasionally says some good stuff but he also comes out with trash for clicks. No one owes him a response.

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cycle92 replied to JustTryingToGetFromAtoB | 1 year ago
1 like

That's fine. I didn't say he was owed a response.

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Flintshire Boy replied to JustTryingToGetFromAtoB | 1 year ago
1 like

.

Look out. Look out.

.

Bike Fascist about.

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You WILL NOT have different opinions to mine.

.

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chrisonabike replied to ChuckSneed | 1 year ago
4 likes
ChuckSneed wrote:

... I don't criticise because I know I can't take it.

?

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ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
7 likes

Ashley Neal talking out of his rectum there, it's starting to look like he has an agenda against cyclists, he is certainly biased. The pedestrian was very obviously being deliberately obtuse, obstructive and blocking the highway in a petulant manner. You cannot blame either cyclist for her irrational behaviour. Ringing the bell to remind them that the space is shared with other users is quite reasonable, her reaction is totally unreasonable. It's also noticeable that this selfish woman deliberately blocking the entire highway has resulted in the pedestrians going the other way having to walk in the mud to go around them, seriously inconsiderate with an attitude problem.

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
2 likes

Mikey's action and the way you speak is exactly like a driver tailgating a cyclist while using the horn to say 'get out of my way'. 

Correct action: Sound the bell leading up to the pedestrians (Mikey did a great job here), keep a safe non-intidating distance back (where he failed) from the party and pass when it's safe to do so. With an agitated pedestrian and a child present, hold back until it's safe to pass while taking extra care. 

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ChrisB200SX replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes

cycle92 wrote:

Mikey's action and the way you speak is exactly like a driver tailgating a cyclist while using the horn to say 'get out of my way'. 

Correct action: Sound the bell leading up to the pedestrians (Mikey did a great job here), keep a safe non-intidating distance back (where he failed) from the party and pass when it's safe to do so. With an agitated pedestrian and a child present, hold back until it's safe to pass while taking extra care. 

No, it's nothing like. You are drawing a false equivalence to use as a straw man.

You could perhaps equate it to a group of cyclists deliberating weaving across the entire highway to block an approaching car because they want to be arses... and then using the horn to remind them that the road is also for motorvehicles and you should deliberately block the highway, which is totally reasonable.

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
1 like

It's funny you should say as I've seen a case where a group of cyclists wouldn't move on tiktok and the driver thankfully was patient enough to wait behind. 

It's not worth raging about. The pedestrian is the more vulnerable in that particular case. Just like a cyclist is in comparison to a car. Never push past. 

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ChrisB200SX replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
3 likes

cycle92 wrote:

It's funny you should say as I've seen a case where a group of cyclists wouldn't move on tiktok and the driver thankfully was patient enough to wait behind. 

It's not worth raging about. The pedestrian is the more vulnerable in that particular case. Just like a cyclist is in comparison to a car. Never push past. 

I've not seen that video, but you seem to be making my point for me  1 

I don't agree that the pedestrian is more vulnerable. If anything the reverse is usually true, although in this particular case the vulnerability is equal due to the low speed. Regardless, this obviously does not even remotely equate to the vulnerability of a cyclist v a motorvehicle.

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
2 likes

That's fine. I'll choose to take extra care as I was taught. You do you.

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marmotte27 replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes
cycle92 wrote:

Just like a cyclist is in comparison to a car. Never push past. 

No, false equivalence. A car, because of its mass and speed, is 100 times more dangerous than a cyclist.

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cycle92 replied to marmotte27 | 1 year ago
0 likes

So push past? Cars are more dangerous, that is true. That doesn't mean bikes can't be dangerous depending on the situation. You do you, I'll do me.

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HoarseMann replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
8 likes

cycle92 wrote:

With an agitated pedestrian and a child present, hold back until it's safe to pass while taking extra care. 

That's exactly what Mikey did. Crikey, it's not like he's driving an HGV through a playground. He was going at walking pace, you'd be a greater risk to pedestrians pushing a shopping trolley around the supermarket!

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cycle92 replied to HoarseMann | 1 year ago
3 likes

Personally I think he went too close and forced her hand but that's just me. You do you and I'll ride how I was taught. I grew up around a lot of heavy machinery (farming), I learned how to drive in a 1996 Scania 430. I stand by my view, choose to respect those more vulnerable and choose the safest option.

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Oldfatgit replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes

"learned how to drive in a 1996 Scania 430."
Not legally as you need to have had a full drivers licence for at least 2 years before you can drive a HGV on the road.

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mark1a replied to Oldfatgit | 1 year ago
3 likes

Oldfatgit wrote:

"learned how to drive in a 1996 Scania 430." Not legally as you need to have had a full drivers licence for at least 2 years before you can drive a HGV on the road.

That's not entirely true, there must be or have been exceptions. My dad passed his (HGV) driving test in a Thornycroft mk7 fire engine just after he joined the Royal Navy back in the 70s, and got a car licence after that. Never taken a test in a car. 

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cycle92 replied to mark1a | 1 year ago
0 likes

Not in my case but I wouldn't be surprised if that was true. 

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cycle92 replied to Oldfatgit | 1 year ago
2 likes

No, that would not be legal. I didn't say I learnt to drive on the road. Like everyone else, I took lessons and passed my test as you would. I have my motorbike, car and HGV as well as HIAB. I had a lot of private land to play on, I grew up on 780 acre farm. We used 3 trucks to draw grain during the harvest. The majority of people brought up farming is taught to drive from a young age. 

Sad to see you took a swipe at something non relevant to the article. My point was from driving large vehicles, I learned to be more aware and respect more vulnerable highway users. Seems like certain people have an agenda here, road safety isn't one. 

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Flintshire Boy replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
1 like

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'Sad to see you took a swipe at something non relevant to the article'.

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This is Road.cc.

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How DARE YOU complain about narrow minded Bike Fascists wanting to shut you down?

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How DARE YOU, Sir?!

.

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cycle92 replied to Flintshire Boy | 1 year ago
1 like

😂 You're not wrong. It is the very much like 'The Sun' newspaper of cycling journalism. Tabloid gossip like mostly.. Reading the comments, the followers are similar to readers who buy The Sun too. Cycling Mikey is at home here.

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ChrisB200SX replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
3 likes

cycle92 wrote:

😂 You're not wrong. It is the very much like 'The Sun' newspaper of cycling journalism. Tabloid gossip like mostly.. Reading the comments, the followers are similar to readers who buy The Sun too. Cycling Mikey is at home here.

TROLL!

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
1 like

Reading the comments, I'm not the troll here.

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ChrisB200SX replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes

cycle92 wrote:

Personally I think he went too close and forced her hand but that's just me. You do you and I'll ride how I was taught. I grew up around a lot of heavy machinery (farming), I learned how to drive in a 1996 Scania 430. I stand by my view, choose to respect those more vulnerable and choose the safest option.

Do you think her deliberately blocking the highway and holding her arms out was respectful and the safest option?

The safest option is to stay at home, but you do you  3

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
1 like

No but I have to do what I can to make the situation safer. Pushing past or creating an altercation isn't the best option in my view.

You stay at home if that's your safest choice, it may do pedestrians a favour. I'll do me, respect their safety no matter how rude they can be to me and explore.

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ChrisB200SX replied to cycle92 | 1 year ago
4 likes

cycle92 wrote:

No but I have to do what I can to make the situation safer. Pushing past or creating an altercation isn't the best option in my view. You stay at home if that's your safest choice, it may do pedestrians a favour. I'll do me, respect their safety no matter how rude they can be to me and explore.

Oh dear, I was actually telling you to stay at home because you claim to be about the safest option. Sorry if you aren't bright enough to understand.

Glad you agree that her behaviour was not the safest option and she therefore started the altercation by deliberately blocking the highway (which is illegal)  1

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cycle92 replied to ChrisB200SX | 1 year ago
0 likes

I actually didn't know a pedestrian blocking a shared pathway was illegal. Where is this stated?

Can we do this without the sneers please.

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