Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Bicycle, bicycle...

This weekend Husband cycled over to Bradford-on-Avon to watch the film Bicycle which is described on its website as a "humorous, lyrical and warm reflection on the bicycle and its place in cycling and its place in the British national psyche". 

Here's the trailer for the film:

The reviews I've heard are good - Husband says it's an upbeat and inspirational film depicting all aspects of cycling from Britain's Olympic successes to ordinary people using bikes as everyday transport, and Richard from our local community bike project rates it highly too - you can read his review here.

The film looks at the history of cycling in the UK and considers why the enthusiasm for cycling waned in the 60s and 70s when cars became more affordable, train services were axed by Dr Beeching, and the first motorways were being built.

Britain was not alone in facing such transport changes but did not foresee or forestall the possible impact in the way that other European countries did - Holland, for example, continued to invest in infrastructure for bikes. Even today in the UK, spending is weighted heavily towards car drivers - £70 per head is invested in roads and only £2 per head on cycling, as opposed to £20 per head on cycling in Holland and £30 per head in Denmark.

It definitely feels as if there is a sea change at the moment. Cycling is gaining in popularity; when Husband spent a few days in London cycling from Hanwell into the city every day earlier this year he was overawed by the number of commuting cyclists - in places they are so many that they control the road.

And yet, despite all the environmental, social and health benefits of cycling there is still much to be done to make cycling feel like a safe option for everyone in the UK. The film supports those such as Chris Boardman, who are lobbying the Government to raise spending on cycling to £10 per head.

If you'd like to watch the film, it's showing at a few selected UK venues before the end of the year. Or you can purchase the DVD (it would make a great Christmas prezzie for the cyclist in your life!). Check out the Bicycle film website for more details here. 

I couldn't think about the title of the film without humming the Queen song in my head, but I'm told that obviously the film is of such quality that it would never feature such a glaringly obvious link on its soundtrack.

I still can't help humming it though...


  1. The use of bicycle has decreased alot. But I still believe its the most pollution free transport and its use should be encouraged. Loved the trailer!

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