timandkathy.co.uk

An update

I haven’t blogged for quite a while. Social media (Twitter, Facebook &c.) seemed like it had replaced blogging for the purposes I used it for. Also, I hadn’t been able to log in to my Wordpress installation for quite a while, and I haven’t yet been able to figure out how to fix the problem. Separately, one of the bloggers I follow on Twitter, Raymond Camden, recently ported his own blog to Hugo, a static site generator written in the Go programming language. Read more...

The Pavement Cycling Issue

The Road “Safety” Crackdown comes in the wake of the hit-and-run death of a cyclist, Jake Gilmore, in Bath in November. He was one of a number of cyclists who died in what was a dark month for road safety in the UK. Police forces in other locations - notably London, Edinburgh and Bristol - have also mounted similar crackdowns in the last few weeks. “Crackdowns” are barely more than PR exercises. Read more...

Bath's 'Bladud' Bikes - a hire scheme before its time?

[I started this post back in March] News reaches me via @katie_monk on Twitter that “Word on the street is that the bike scheme might be getting scrapped because the bikes are getting vandalised. Boo hiss!“ It would indeed be a shame for the scheme to close… or would it? It was funded with EU Civitas money, implemented by Bicincitta (an Italian company), and launched last year with no little amusement at the (initially) badly-translated web site and frustration at (and, in one case, concern at the security of) the sign-up process, which was said to be extremely awkward, and lacking the casual-use flexibility of the much-larger “Boris Bikes” scheme in London; a scheme that, although better technically than the Bladud Bikes, still work out as the most expensive bikes in the world. Read more...

I wonder what the cyclist is

-- I wrote this poem when I was preparing my report on Andrea Leadsom’s Dangerous Cycling Ten-minute Bill for The Pod Delusion. The report featured in Episode 83. Spring is sprung, the grass is ris I wonder what the cyclist is? Fitter, happier, more productive? Or furiously, wantonly destructive? You won’t get balance from the papers Or broadcast media about their capers. They’re either being squashed by a lorry, Read more...

Conscientious Objection and the "War on the Motorist"

Philip “Hoverboard” Hammond?p=1328, Secretary of State for Transport, says he’s going to “end the war on the motorist”, as if such a war exists rather than being the mental (in both senses) construct of the car-sick UK press and government. Anyway, a comment on a Guardian editorial on the absurdity of this assertion made me think: “I have to admit, there is a nice driver or two about who – in rush hour – politely wait for me to cross a four lane roundabout feed with no pedestrian crossing in the pouring rain pulling my wheelie suitcase. Read more...

West addicts facing jump in drug prices by end of month

This is a parody. Oil is an addiction. Addicts in the West could be paying up to 130p a hit for drugs by the beginning of next year, an industry body has warned. The Retail Drugs Industry Independent Crack Dealers Association (RDI Crack) predicted prices could soar by 3 per cent ahead of the August Bank Holiday weekend and 8 per cent by the end of 2010. RDI Crack, which represents around two-thirds of Britain’s 9,000 drugs forecourt sites, said the average crack price nationally could rise as high as 125. Read more...

Charlie Simpson, cycling and charity

BBC News: bq. A seven-year-old boy from London who was aiming to raise £500 for the Haiti quake relief effort through a sponsored bike ride has raised more than £72,000 (n.b. now over £100,000). – http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/london/8477345.stm The bike ride is a great effort, and the fundraising really got going after Charlie was featured on BBC Breakfast. None of what follows is intended to knock what Charlie has done, so please don’t take it in that way; it is merely a comment on our collective attitude to cycling here in the UK, with reference to kids in The Netherlands (highlighted on David Hembrow’s blog%20travel). Read more...

Changes are afoot

Since leaving Digerati Studio in June, I’ve been picking up odd bits of freelance work but not yet really enough to provide a decent income for my family. I mentioned on Twitter on Friday that I’d had an interview and been offered a job. On Monday, I accepted the offer. So far, I haven’t mentioned what – or where – the job is. Fear not, your wait is over. I will be working for a medium-sized company called N4 Solutions, which is based near Cirencester. Read more...

Paris vs Bristol

Bristol, Britain’s first Cycling City, aims to introduce a Paris Velib-style cycle hire scheme, operated by Hourbike. My fear is that, by having a system that is too small, the scheme will fail. Some quotes from the Happy Birthday Velib video (linked below) bear this out: bq. “you have to go big enough to where it’s at least 1 bike per 200 residents. I think that’s a bare minimum for the good function of the system” Read more...
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