“Can I ride my bike in the Pedestrian Heart?” is a question lots of cyclists in the town have been asking since the work began. So, I emailed the council cycling officer:
I’m unclear about when will it be legal for me to ride my bike through the town centre. If I use Bondgate to access Northgate and North Road on my way home from work tonight, am I breaking the law?
To enter the Pedestrian Heart on Bondgate (map), I have to ride between two ‘No Entry’ signs on Bondgate. I also asked when the six month trial period will begin.
I recieved the following responses:
Until the signs are in place and the No Entry signs only are in place then technically it is illegal to ride your bike past these points. My advice at this stage would be to get off and push your bike past the signs. We are awaiting approval from Department for Transport who have had our Traffic Regulation Order requests for a number of months. It isn’t simply a case of putting the signs up as we need approval from DfT. The official six month trial will begin as soon as the works are completed in the town centre although cycling is allowed now as well.
I think the key is to take heed of the signs that are up at the moment – they have Traffic Regulation Orders behind them already. I know that the situation isn’t ideal but some of the signs rely on the infrastructure being there – like cycle bypasses – for them to work and we don’t have approval for the signs yet either. Once we have approval and all the signs go up then things will be much clearer.
So, it looks like I can ride that way, provided I walk my bike past the ‘No Entry’ signs. I assume this means we can ride anywhere within the Pedestrian Heart, provided we don’t ride in past any ‘No Entry’ signs.
I’m still unsure whether I can ride along, for example, High Row from Bondgate towards Blackwellgate; is this currently designated as a One Way road, since it was before the scheme began?