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“Criminal mischief”: The cyclist on a mission to un-deface bad drivers’ number plates, plus BMX legend Ken Floyde on the Podcast

The podcast is back for 2023, and we've got two special and fascinating guests...

It’s the first podcast of 2023, and we're talking un-defacing naughty NYC drivers' defaced number plates with a public-spirited cyclist and BMX with a very deserved new recipient of the British Empire Medal! 

Listen to the podcast on Apple Podcasts
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Listen to the Podcast on Amazon Music
Ken Floyde (British Cycling)
(British Cycling)

First up, George and I talk to Ken Floyde, the legendary founder of Brixton BMX Club, who has rightly been recognised with a British Empire Medal for his decades of tireless voluntary service to the South London BMX scene.

Ken started the club almost by chance way back in 1981 in the midst of the Brixton riots, when he realised disenfranchised young people in the area didn't exactly identify with any kind of cyclesport as it was then. The vision to provide a place for those youngsters in the early 80s to ride their BMX bikes and feel part of a community is still paying dividends today, with Ken nurturing the talents of elite BMX riders such as Charlie Reynolds, and helping countless people to discover cycling through the sport of BMX. As you’ll find out in the podcast, Ken’s influence has stretched far beyond South London and he’s not planning to stop any time soon. 

In part 2 Simon catches up with Gersh Kuntzman of Streetsblog NYC, who is proving to be a real nuisance for naughty New York drivers obscuring their number plates, predominantly to avoid picking up fines for indiscretions.

Find out why Gersh is on a mission to make the streets of the Big Apple safer for cyclists and pedestrians with “criminal mischief”, a term coined when the NYPD remarkably decided to arrest a friend of Gersh’s for un-defacing an offending vehicle. As you can see from the tweet above he's still going, and despite the publicity, the NYPD are still yet to fully crack down on the problem by the looks of things...

The Podcast is available on Apple PodcastsSpotify and Amazon Music, and if you have an Alexa you can just tell it to play the Podcast. It's also embedded further up the page, so if preferred you can just press play.

Arriving at in 2017 via 220 Triathlon Magazine, Jack dipped his toe in most jobs on the site and over at eBikeTips before being named the new editor of in 2020, much to his surprise. His cycling life began during his students days, when he cobbled together a few hundred quid off the back of a hard winter selling hats (long story) and bought his first road bike - a Trek 1.1 that was quickly relegated to winter steed, before it was sadly pinched a few years later. Creatively replacing it with a Trek 1.2, Jack mostly rides this bike around local cycle paths nowadays, but when he wants to get the racer out and be competitive his preferred events are time trials, sportives, triathlons and pogo sticking - the latter being another long story.  

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mattw | 1 year ago

Interesting on parking in cities.

Coming soon to somewhere near you: Workplace Parking Levy?

In Nottingham this has raised nearly £100m for various travel projects over the last decade.


OldRidgeback | 1 year ago

Brilliant to hear Ken being interviewed  1

Sriracha | 1 year ago


Rik Mayals unde... replied to Sriracha | 1 year ago

You know, this is becoming very common in the UK, particulalry amongst supercar drivers, they don't seem to like having a number plate on the front. I asked someone I know who has a Porsche and a Ferrari why they didn't have number plates on the front. He said he didn't like them as they spoilt the front end of a car. It's a good job our police are so crap at enforcing road traffic law because they could impound millions of pounds worth of exotic metal.

IanMSpencer replied to Rik Mayals underpants | 1 year ago

Plenty of supercars have no means of attaching a front plate - they are fundamentally designed as track cars, only designed to barely comply with road going legislation for sales purposes.

When I visited our local supercar showroom as part of a social event some time ago, there was more than one Aston Martin less than 9 months old with 7 owners. These are not cars for driving on UK roads as I suspect the purchasers found.

Dicklexic replied to IanMSpencer | 1 year ago

Yeah many do not have a 'proper' plate location or recess designed in. However every car bought in the UK should be displaying one, so the dealers are supposed fit a bracket or adapter to the car, but often leave it to the owner to decide whether or not they want to attach it. In principal a bit like bike shops supplying a bag of loose reflectors and a bell with every new bike. Of course supercar owners tend to be wealthy folk, so the minimal risk of a £100 fine (which to them is pretty insignificant) is worth it to them to improve the aesthetics of their shiny new car.

Sriracha replied to Dicklexic | 1 year ago

It's supposed to be a £1000 fine, not £100.

And it's supposed to be an MOT failure too, so either the motorists are swapping their plates for the MOT (so being without excuse they merit the maximum penalty), or MOT examiners are complicit.

For example, the blue BMW I pictured above is reg XK51KHX (illegally spaced and darkened on the rear plate) and has an MOT dated 6 Oct. Did the owner sellotape a plate onto the front for the MOT? Was the MOT examiner blind, or complicit?

wtjs replied to Rik Mayals underpants | 1 year ago
1 like

It's a good job our police are so crap at enforcing road traffic law because they could impound millions of pounds worth of exotic metal

In Lancashire, you can do what you like with number plates with zero chance of anything being done about illegal plates

quiff replied to wtjs | 1 year ago

For anyone else wondering what's wrong with that number plate, the DVLA doesn't recognise the number.

HoarseMann replied to Sriracha | 1 year ago

...and what on earth have they got dangling from the rear-view mirror, obstructing the view out of the windscreen?

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