Mansfield '˜double standards' row over tour cycle ban
A leading cycling organisation has accused Mansfield District Council of double standards for allowing a stage of The Tour of Britain where cyclists are currently banned.
The authority banned people riding around the market place to combat “anti-social” cycling last year, but has now said that “responsible” cyclists were welcome in the same place for the Tour of Britain on September 6.
Campaign group Cycling UK, which is currently supporting six cyclists who are challenging the council over a public spaces protection order (PSPO), issued a year ago prohibits people from cycling in the pedestrianised market place area, described the move as ‘illogical’.
Anyone who fails to dismount when asked faces a fine.
Cycling UK spokesman Duncan Dollimore said: “They are marketing the town as cycle friendly, but not to people who want to shop there.
“We would never defend cycling anti-social behaviour, but why not deal with those being stupid and not responsible cyclists? They are effectively saying cycling is anti-social.”
He also criticised the council’s own promotional video showing a cyclist riding through areas which are prohibited.
In a statement, Mansfield District Council said it welcomed responsible cyclists to the town to view the race, but with care and consideration.
Riders have been encouraged to dismount, but “normal” rules concerning the PSPO will not be in operation for the “special event”.
Mansfield’s mayor Kate Allsop said: “This is about safety. This event will be properly monitored and managed.
“What we don’t want is people dashing through the town centre on their bikes frightening or upsetting people.
“This is a special event and it would have been a dreadful shame if we were so inflexible that we would not host this amazing opportunity.”