A forum poster on BikeBiz.com said being mauled by Nigel Havers is like being "savaged by a damp poodle" but the actor has been given editorial space in cyclist-hating newspaper The Daily Mail to once again give the "gods of the road" (Havers' own words) a kicking. His invective even extends to The Independent: "one newspaper yesterday devoted no less than 24 pages to [cycling] in a week-long celebration of life on two wheels." Havers splutters that there's an "emptiness" about cycling's "green credentials."

Nigel Havers REALLY hates cyclists

Last week in The Independent, Havers attacked cyclists for being law-breakers while he talked to the interviewing journalist from his car…on a mobile phone.

While motorists routinely get away with life-threatening speeding and anti-social pavement parking, Havers believes it’s cyclists who are the real villains.

"Normal rules about red lights, pavements and one-way streets are treated as a matter of supreme indifference by this new army of Lycra-clad maniacs, whose every action demonstrates their contempt for pedestrians and motorists," said the actor.

"The irony is that a green outlook, so fashionable in chic metropolitan political circles, is meant to be based on a concern for surroundings.

"But that is just the opposite to the attitude of the boorish cycling classes who, in a cocoon of self-absorption, believe the rest of the world can go hang.

"Much of their environmentalism is nothing more than posturing. If you conducted a complete audit of their lifestyles, you would quickly find that they are far less green than they claim.

"They probably go on regular cheap flights overseas to hip new locations in eastern Europe or Africa, feeling very good about themselves as their planes emit huge clouds of noxious gases.

"They do not bother to question whether their garish Lycra garments were made by children in the Third World, or, indeed, whether their bicycle was manufactured in some exploitative, low-wage factory in China."

"Pomposity and selfishness runs through everything committed cyclists do."

And then he wheels out the tired old cliche: "Unlike motorists, who individually pay hundreds, even thousands, of pounds a year in road tax and petrol duty, sustaining the upkeep of the network, cyclists get free use of our streets."

Havers clearly doesn’t realise that general taxation pays for the upkeep of roads, and cyclists are tax-payers just like motorists. Anyway, study after study has shown that the majority of cyclists are also car-owners so pay road tax and duties just like other motorists, it’s just that they sometimes choose to cycle rather than drive.

To date, Havers hasn’t used violence on cyclists but his article shows he could be about to tip:

"I have longed to have a stick to jam between the spokes of their wheels and bring them to a deservedly painful halt," he writes. And, after a fellow actor insisted on protecting his bike by bringing it inside the National Theatre, Havers said: "I often felt like putting a knife through the tyres."

Incitement to violence? Perhaps the police could take an interest in Mr Havers’ attitudes?

"Why do we have show such tolerance to those who infringe the law? asks Havers. Quite.


In other news...

Belgian start-up Gofluo raises €1 million to accelerate future growth

Gofluo has raised €1 million to accelerate company growth and expand to the US, France …