#StAlbansCyclists campaign aims to tackle inconsiderate riders

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

A St Albans resident has launched a one-man social media campaign to name and shame irresponsible cyclists.

Gerald Quinlan, who actually rides a bike himself, has posted dozens of images of anti-social and dangerous cycling in the city centre using the hashtag #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

He was prompted to take action after being frequently threatened with violence when he challenged cyclists about their behaviour, which often involves using pavement areas and dodging between pedestrians.

"One fellow snatched my telephone - and twisted my wrist in the process - and threatened to destroy it unless I deleted images of him nearly running me over.

"I remain, disappointed that many of our local cycling groups/organisations have not tried to address this issue. Having said that, Verulum Cycle Club could not have been more helpful when I reported one of their members for abusing me - he received a verbal warning, and they were very clear about the conduct they expect from their members.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter.

One of the cyclists pictured by Gerald Quinlan using #StAlbansCyclists on Twitter. - Credit: Gerald Quinlan

Herts county council (HCC) has devised four different projects for St Albans to create safer, user-friendly spaces for those that cycle and walk after being awarded £6.4m from the government's Active Travel Fund, but Gerald is concerned that these will increase the amount of irresponsible cycling in the city centre.

He has now asked St Albans district council leader Cllr Chris White to explain what measures will be put in place to prevent cyclists from riding on the proposed new walking routes.

Gerald added: "Cyclists in the city centre are now treating footpaths as if they are cycle lanes, yet the council has done nothing to tackle this menace.

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"Clearly, robust measures are required to ensure that such anti-social and dangerous behaviour is not replicated on any walking routes.

"What would I like to happen? Simple: cyclists to stop behaving in a dangerous and anti-social manner.  I suppose the question is how can we stop this behaviour.

"Hopefully, these suggestions are food for thought: a campaign for considerate cycling and a code of conduct for such; getting local cycling groups/organisations to sign up to such a code, and making it a prerequisite for membership; appropriate signage for ‘No Cycling’ on pavements, etc; advertising, and the use of social media, to reinforce where cycling is inappropriate/illegal; enforcement; and having the council commit to ensuring that the wider community - and not just the cycle lobby - is involved in any ’cycling and walking’ working groups."