Those Pressing ‘Guardian’ Concerns…

London is not alone in lacking gender parity in cycling. Sustainable transport consultant Alix Stredwick quotes 2008 research by the Department for Transport showing that UK-wide, women make 27% of cycle journeys, just ahead of the US at 25%, but below Canada at 30% – and in a different league entirely to Germany at 49%, and Denmark and the Netherlands, where women cyclists outnumber men at around 55%.

And this CANNOT BE ALLOWED TO STAND..! How can we have a gender imbalance in something so utterly vital?

What’s that? There’s also a gender imbalance in refuse collection and sewerage work? Oh.



Look, never mind, back to cycling!

Stredwick says the gender imbalance in London “reflects the hostile road environment for cycling”. “I’ve come to the conclusion that we get the cyclists we deserve. If we have a street environment that’s hostile, that has no facilities, that has fast traffic with heavy lorries thundering past, we will get low numbers of courageous people, mainly men, on racing bikes and pretty well no one else. But if you provide a street environment where it’s much more egalitarian, where your granny can cycle to the shops safely and have somewhere to park her Dutch-style bike – that’s when we’ll get those kind of cyclists. But you have to be able to provide for them.”

Maybe your granny wouldn’t want to cycle? Maybe she’d rather drive, or get the bus?

Where Stredwick lives, in the inner London borough of Hackney, 15% of commuters now cycle, double the inner London average, but the share of women cyclists is little improved, she says. She puts this partly down to the council’s resistance to segregate bike lanes on main roads, for fear that they will interfere with bus travel and car parking spaces.

“Maybe we need fewer buses, pumping out diesel particulates. People could get off the buses and cycle instead.”

Maybe Stredwick should cycle if she wants to, and worry less about what other people want to do…

14 comments for “Those Pressing ‘Guardian’ Concerns…

  1. john in cheshire
    July 11, 2015 at 12:22 pm

    This seems to be a case of if you don’t have something serious to be exercised about, then make up something.

    • July 12, 2015 at 7:46 am

      Well, that’s the ‘Guardian’s’ business model… 🙂

  2. PeterA5145
    July 11, 2015 at 12:59 pm

    Surely a good way of achieving gender balance in cycling would be to reduce the number of male cyclists.

    • Lord T
      July 11, 2015 at 6:49 pm


      Good point and to incentivise them we should allow men to not pay the London Driving Tax and triple it for women, especially those that are just dropping their kids off.

    • July 12, 2015 at 7:47 am

      Tipper trucks and lorries are doing their best, Peter..!

  3. July 11, 2015 at 1:37 pm

    It should be mandatory that all public roads should have at a minimum 40% female cyclists on them by 2020. It may be necessary to transgender a lot of people, even get Bruce Jenner to make some adverts.

  4. July 11, 2015 at 2:49 pm

    Quotas – only thing. Force all women to ride bikes near lorries in London. The only compassionate equality possible. Never mind if they have no bike – make them!

  5. July 11, 2015 at 4:49 pm

    Perhaps women have more sense than riding bikes in central London, all those fat blonde men around.

  6. Ed P
    July 11, 2015 at 8:59 pm

    Is Mr. Stredwick really sustainable as a transport consultant?

  7. Ed P
    July 11, 2015 at 9:01 pm

    As (I’ve just noticed) it’s Alix with an “eye” Stredwick, perhaps my gender assumption was erroneous. Mea Culpa

    • July 12, 2015 at 7:48 am


  8. Ed P
    July 11, 2015 at 9:04 pm

    Tennis corner: Serannie the trannie or freak?

  9. Mudplugger
    July 13, 2015 at 8:24 am

    It’s always wise to avoid a woman on her cycle……

  10. David
    July 13, 2015 at 3:43 pm

    I think that freedom from fear of crime, traffic accidents, being blown by Islamists etc is important.
    It is equally important that a responsible cyclist is safe on the roads as that a tube is not blown up Islamists.
    However why the gender parity is important is hard to fathom.

Comments are closed.