In an example of life imitating art, Secretary of State for Transport Patrick McLoughlin today said that roads need to be made safe for cyclists, but that cyclists need to behave better.
At the Conservative Party Conference McLoughlin also confirmed £170million would be spent on new road schemes – but didn’t say motorists should behave in return.
McLoughlin’s words were spookily reminiscent of a spoof article we ran last month, detailing how motorists would only receive further funding if they behave on the road.
McLoughlin said today: "This was the summer that Britain got cycling. The number of people cycling is soaring, but the number of accidents has gone up too. We’ve got to change that.
"We’ve got to build safety into our roads for everyone that means better design and better education too because this isn’t just about getting motorists to take care, it is also about getting cyclists to do their bit too."
Interestingly, McLoughlin went on to pay tribute to ‘big transport projects’ that are sometimes controversial initially, but once built become popular and hugely beneficial to the country.
Referring to the HS2 railway project, he said: "Our competitors around the world are investing in transport and we must too. No big infrastructure project is done without controversy, but once they are built people rely on them.
"It’s no good creating good [transport] systems, if people can’t afford to use them.
"We need better roads too, to keep car, trucks and buses moving. Let’s face it, we’ve underinvested as a country for years. There is too much congestion. Not enough new schemes. It’s madness and we’re going to get it sorted out.
"You can’t just click your fingers to solve it [congestion]. You need to think big and hold your nerve for decades."
Like the Dutch did in the 1970s when they set about making their roads safer for cyclists? (More here).
McLoughlin’s speech in full can be heard at the Spectator.