Cycling World Magazine July 2017 - Page 7

July 2017| 7 ED's LETTER July 2017: Cars vs Bikes I spend a lot of time in the lovely town of Sandwich, Kent. Being a good eight miles away from my home town, with a convenient off-road cycle path almost the whole way, it is a fantastic destination for bike-riding days with the kids. There is a lovely shady nature reserve along the way, as well as a small cafΓ© with an amazing view, handily situated about half way along the route. It is not the longest ride, and is downhill most of the way, but to do the journey there and then back again, with some rather steep slopes on the way home, is more than enough for my boys! The town itself is full of cycling enthusiasts, with Locks of Sandwich bike shop providing the residents with everything they could possibly need and also organising regular group events. There is also a Strava segment that takes you through the historic town, and so groups of cyclists are a common sight. Unfortunately, the town is very much split between those who cycle, and those who do not! Sandwich is a very old town, with a total number of 443 listed buildings! As the layout of the town has changed very little since Roman times, the roads are narrow and the pathways are even narrower! Driving through the area, therefore, can be stressful at times, as you try to navigate extremely tight corners and drive halfway down a very thin road, only to have to reverse back up it in order to let another car through. It is not uncommon for the whole town to come to a standstill because a lorry has tried to squeeze into a ridiculously cramped side road and become stuck between two houses on either side of the road. So, for many, cycling is the obvious answer; no more being held up in traffic because the train gates have got stuck down (again!) and nipping in and out of the beautiful, but tiny back roads is easy. For those that don’t cycle, however, cyclists are just another irritation in the minefield that is driving through the area. Where do I stand? Well, as someone who has attempted both modes of transport in Sandwich, I have to say, that if EVERYONE were to make a trip to their local bike shop and use their new wheels to get around the area, traffic probl •΅Μέ½Υ±‰”Ή½Έ΄)•α₯ΝΡ•ΉΠ°Α±Ύݔέ½Υ±…±°‰”‘•…±Ρ‘₯•Θ°‘…ΑΑ₯•Θ…Ή)±•Ν́ΝΡΙ•ΝΝ•Έ5…剔½Ή”‘…ηŠ