Critical mass cycle in Bath

Riders in Dorchester Street

Riders in near City of Bath College

The first of the new “Critical Mass” rides took place on Friday 27th September, with 15 cyclists, most on their way home from work, starting in Kingsmead Square.  The “mass” was hardly “critical”, with 15 riders mostly on their way home from work.  The short route was along Dorchester Street, over Pulteney Bridge, Bathwick Street, the Paragon, Milsom Street and back to Kingsmead Square via Cheap Street and Westgate Street.

Rides will continue on the last Friday of every month, meeting in Kingsmead Square at 5.30pm. The aim is not to disrupt traffic, which at that time last Friday was practically stationary anyway, but to demonstrate what the future may be like with many more bikes on the road.  If there is a transfer from cars to bikes maybe traffic would not come to a halt as often.  About 85% of cyclists drive cars so there would seem to be scope for more to leave their cars at home and take to two wheels.

Stopped in traffic on Paragon

Stopped in traffic on Paragon

There was only one unpleasant moment when a very impatient x39 bus driver hooted and tried to pass just to get one car’s length further up the queue.  Would she have hooted at a car in front, or was it just because she didn’t want to be held up by people on bikes?

The balance is changing with more and more people riding bikes on our roads, so there has to be an adjustment in the amount of space provided.  It seems that it is this that drivers find difficult to accept.  There needs to be a greater understanding, awareness and tolerance of others from all road users.

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4 Responses to Critical mass cycle in Bath

  1. Peter says:

    Fantastic to see the re-emergence of Critical mass.!! I used to be a regular at the meets in London during the mid-late 90s and always enjoyed the atmosphere and energy that was generated whilst spreading the word of a happier & healthier ( & usually quicker) way of commuting.. Will definitely be along to the next gathering..

    Happy cycling.

  2. Nico says:

    Last winter I was shocked when a bus driver “honked” me aggressively as she attempted to pass me on the roundabout (London Rd West/A46) just before it merges to one lane heading west into town. It was dark, there was little traffic and I was cycling quite quickly in the inside lane, she was driving even faster in the middle lane (the right hand lane sends you north up the A46) and it appeared that she wished me to slow down so that she could get ‘safely’ infront of me. Could this be the same agressive female bus driver?

    • Roger says:

      Thanks for responding to the blog post. It could be. The one we encountered has medium length fair hair and drives for First Group. You might be interested in a meeting between First’s bus drivers and cyclists to talk about and experience each others’ difficulties on Saturday 5th October 09:00 – 12:00 at the Odd Down Cycle Circuit, off Chelwood Drive, Bath

      RSVP to

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