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Police use close pass footage to prosecute cyclist for riding on shared-use path

“It highlights how clueless police are about cycling and to me seems to be an attack on cyclists”

A cyclist who submitted footage of a close pass to the Met Police has learned that he himself is to be prosecuted. The force says reader Giles is guilty of riding a pedal cycle on a footpath – but the cyclist points out that the stretch in question is a well-marked shared-use path.

The alleged offence happened at 6.45am on March 4 at the roundabout between New and Old Kent Roads in London. It occurs towards the end of the video above.

“As a result of my reporting a driver for what I considered a fast, close, aggressive pass, I am being prosecuted for ‘Ride a pedal cycle on a footpath,’ when in fact I was using a well-marked cycle path,” said Giles.

“After I reported the driver I was somewhat surprised to get an email a few days later saying that they were going to prosecute. They rarely prosecute for close passes. It turns out that they are prosecuting me rather than the driver.

“I am absolutely raging about this. It highlights how clueless police are about cycling and to me seems to be an attack on cyclists. They are ignoring the driver but jump at a chance to prosecute a cyclist.”

A look on Google StreetView shows that there is a sign indicating the area can be used by cyclists as well as pedestrians at the point at which Giles comes off the road.

Great Dover Street (via StreetView)

There are further signs round the corner.

Giles says that he often takes this route.

“In this case the roundabout was very quiet but there can often be lots of queuing traffic there. This makes it hard to get by on the road, especially leaving the roundabout where it is narrow. It's a lot easier on the shared cycle path – and the shared cycle path avoids two sets of lights.”

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