Life and Cycling

7 Dec

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Hi all

I am aware that it has been a while since my last post. When I first started up this blog in late 2012 I was college student with almost 4 days a week of spare time on my hands and very little to channel it into, since then I have become much more busy. Beginning with the founding of the Solihull Bicycle Campaign and the start of my university course in 2013, the launching of the SBiC monthly newsletter and my registration as a CTC Right to Ride rep earlier this year (resulting in me joining the Solihull Cycling Steering group earlier this month). All this together with a rapidly increasing university workload and various campaign and consultation meetings, has very quickly made me a busy person. Which brings me back to the blog, due to the time required to research and write posts for this blog it will regrettably be shifting to an as-and-when basis. I may down-shift to random small posts on a periodic basis but I still intend to complete the route review series.

All of this work seems to arrive and disappear in cycles, there will be times where I have to schedule my waking hours down to the half an hour just to get half of the things done that I need to, waking up at 5 am and getting my first down-time at 8 at night, 6 days a week. The are other weeks, especially during the summer, where it seems like I have all the time in the world to channel into the important things in my life. Thinking about these lows and highs, made me consider the other areas in which I experience similar changes.

As a cycle campaigner there are plenty: there are always those times when the council makes the right noises, support appears to be gathering or funding is announced and then you hit the brick wall. Comprising of government regulations, hamstrung funding, cycle behaviour filibusters and general lack of vision, consideration and forethought. Like when the government announces a ‘cycling revolution’ on the backs of a couple of million and then proposes billions of pounds for motoring in almost the same breath. Or when a visionary cycle scheme turns out to be nothing more than narrow shared-use pavements. Meaningful infrastructure is proposed, which is then either hamstrung or binned due to a few very vocal (or very rich) people. This is usually mirrored by cycles within cycling (excuse the pun). You get days where the sun shines, all drivers give you more than enough room, and cycling in the UK doesn’t seem like a bad thing it all, and then autumn hits and the grey drudgery and frustration of life in transportation limbo returns Faced by these constant cycles of depression it is no surprise that campaigners in the UK very quickly lose motivation and are ready to celebrate every advance no matter how small.

However it is also important not to forget what it is that we’re campaigning for. My drive is to make the world a better, happier and more sustainable place not just for me, but for my family and everyone else around me. And I will keep on working towards that ideal no matter what. So even if things look bleak remind yourself of your reasons,  ever lose hope that things can be better and don’t stop fighting just because someone tells you it’s impossible. Remember:
The night is darkest

So never give up!

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