Is it still okay for children under 10 to ride on the pavement?
The marvellous Carlton Reid discusses the issue of pavement riding in some depth over at Bikehub.
Cycling on footways (paths at the side of a carriageway) is prohibited by Section 72 of the Highway Act 1835, amended by Section 85(1) of the Local Government Act 1888. This is punishable by a fixed penalty notice of £30 under Section 51 and Schedule 3 of the Road Traffic Offenders Act 1988. There are no exceptions for children, little old ladies, those without lights or people riding home from the pub. The primary difference seems to be that children under the age of criminal responsibility (10 in England, 12 in Scotland) cannot face prosecution and fixed penalty notices do not apply to those under the age of 16.
Home Office guidance was released to accompany legislation that came into force in 1999, indicating that police and community traffic wardens should use sensitivity and discretion in relation to cyclists riding on the pavement out of a legitimate fear for their safety.
The situation is different in Scotland, where non-motorised access rights are enshrined in law by the Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2003. This means you can go pretty much where you please other than someone's garden or a working farm, unless you are hunting, shooting, fishing, being a nuisance, allowing your dog to be a nuisance, or engaged in criminal or commercial activity.
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Do women's bikes come in any colour other than pink or baby blue?
The choice has been fairly appalling, has it not?
Fortunately cycle manufacturers are absorbing the message that not all women wish to ride something that would not look out of place in a baby's nursery. Specialized's new Ruby Elite is a rather pleasing combination of black, white and red. The Scott Contessa comes in a model that is mostly black, with a splash of something that they describe as purple (although it looks suspiciously pink to me). The Trek Lexa C is white with black and red details. White, it would seem, is the new pink for ladies.
Orange bucks the trend with the Five Diva, a wonderfully aggressive-looking machine in black, black and more black.
It is taking a long time but we are getting there. Ladies, please keep telling manufacturers and buyers that we are not genetically pre-determined to prefer things that are pink or powder blue or covered in a floral pattern. If we don't make our voices heard then nothing will change because it will be assumed that we are content with our lot.