Beyond Mr Franklin -as easy as riding a bicycle but.....

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PJ McGivern
Beyond Mr Franklin -as easy as riding a bicycle but.....

Dear All,

I need your help.

I have not participated in a forum here previously but have a small problem and  I would appreciate some help with it.

Quite simply - 

If you were asked by a reluctant or returning rider for a book or video about how to ride in UK on roads, what could you recommend ?  

I've read Mark's blog and agree that Mr F is not quite right on some points. Is there an alternative?

Looking forward to your views 

Many thanks


Cliff Matthews

If you are a reluctant rider then my advice would be do not ride a bike, at least not on the road. You need a certain amount of confidence on the road and you won't get it from a video or book. Try taking your bike to an off road area and get some confidence before you then go into traffic.

If you are a returning rider then I would only suggest the highway code, though not many car drivers recognise this book it does give you guidance about how to navigate your way through the many highway obstacles on British roads.

Of course British roads vary enormously from inner city cycling in London to congested towns like Ipswich through to the rural hinterlands, the problems presented to the cyclist vary enormously.

If you want to watch videos then GCN have a channel on Youtube with all kinds of useful advice but they won't prepare you much for real life. Start to cycle when the traffic is light ie not rush hour, get the hang of your local roads, use the footpath whenever you feel unsafe on the road, be careful whenever traffic is moving slower than you, passing cars, lorries etc is when you have to be vigilant.


My suggestion is to move upward in small steps, over at least a 12 month period, from segregated cycle tracks to ever-busier roads. Also, of course, read the relevant sections of the highway code and become familiar with the most hazardous situations identified by accident statistics.  I have an untested hunch that motorists are more respectful of cyclists with action cams on dayglow helmets.

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