CTC President Jon Snow
CTC President Jon Snow

Jon Snow and Josie Dew at the Transport Select Committee

President and Vice-President of CTC respectively, Jon Snow and Josie Dew appeared alongside editor of The Times, James Harding, whose 'Cities fit for cycling' campaign has triggered a shift in political support for cycling. Two ministers with responsibility for cycling also gave evidence.

Since The Times launched its Cities fit for cycling campaign in February, political doors have opened and behind the scenes there has been a bit of progress on many of the 8 points which The Times originally argued for.

CTC had already given evidence to the Transport Select Committee's Inquiry into Road Safety but an additional day of evidence specifically on cycling was arranged, to which CTC's President, Vice-President and the editor of The Times were invited.

Watch Jon Snow speaking in the session:

See video

Following them came two Ministers, Mike Penning MP and Norman Baker MP. Both reviewed what they were already doing to improve cycle safety, but gave little substantive new information, although they did respond to questions sent in via Twitter.

One area in which they revealed considerable confusion was in comparative data with other countries. Armed with a list of the rate of cycle fatalities per 100,000 people in various countries, they claimed Britain had a better safety record than the Netherlands, because there were fewer deaths per head.

CTC has previously argued for measures of cycle safety to be made per mile - a position which the Department for Transport agreed to in its Strategic Framework for Road Safety. It is troubling that Ministers are still persisting with an inaccurate means of measuring safety. CTC has written to the Ministers to ask them to correct this section of their evidence.

Chris Peck