I used a cycle lane once. I hit a van, so haven't used one since...
Can I just check, you DONT have to use a cycle lane next to a road ?
I'm with you coffeeking. I'm neither pro or anti either modes of transport, both are equally valid. A bit of consideration from both motorists and cyclists is all that's needed. (I thank drivers who have given way to me regardless of whether they had to or not).However I certainly don't apologise for my presence on the road (driving or cycling).
The cycle lanes in my local area only seem to have been painted in as a traffic calming measure.
There was an interesting post on David Hembrow's blog recently, comparing his two recent bike commutes. On was his commute in Cambridge where he rode on the road, the other a similar distance in similar circumstances in Holland on Dutch bike paths. Guess which one had the highest average speed...
EDIT: here it is: http://hembrow.blogspot.com/2009/11/commuting-speeds.html
Now I know exactly which bit of road the OP was referring to - I use the road too. I didn't even realise there was a cycle path on that bit anyway. Fairly narrow shared pavement, plus lots of side turnings make the road far safer.
Wow. Three people on STW who know Thatcham. I reckon there's at least one more (Keva?).
I believe unless you have ridden where there is decent cycle provision like the low countries and Germany you really don't understand how good cycle provision can be - dramatically improving things for cycles without causing cars an great hassle
Miketullys link explains a bit.
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