AffiliationUniversity of Chester
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AbstractIncreasing conflict over the use of road space in Britain during the 1930s can be seen in the rapid growth of casualty figures. In particular, concerns were raised over the rising number of cyclists’ deaths as part of the overall numbers. Reports and comments in Parliament, coroners’ reports and newspapers placing responsibility for road safety on non-motorised road users led to considerable reaction from cycle users and, ultimately, to the formation of a vociferous campaign group uniting previously disparate factions and interests from cycle users, sporting clubs and industry. Drawing on contemporary sources, in particular on the coverage of the conflict by the Cyclists’ Touring Club, and on parliamentary debate surrounding the 1930 and 1934 Road Traffic Acts, this paper examines the discursive production of cyclists as a previously invisible body of road users. It considers the complexities of the conflict over road safety and the location of responsibility for road safety in terms of class, representation, power and status of the groups of actors in relation to the governance of road space. The arguments over legitimacy and safety produced by the conflicting interests of different road user groups articulated in this period continue to have significant bearing on transport policy and practice today. This is especially the case given recent renewed interest in promoting cycling as a sustainable mode of urban mobility and the often vociferous debate between advocates of separate infrastructure and supporters of integrated road use
CitationIn G. Duc, O. Perroux, H. Schiedt, & F. Walter, (Eds.), Histoire des transports et de la mobilité: Entre concurrence modale et coordination (de 1918 à nos jours) (pp.279-305). Neuchâtel , Switzerland: Editions Alphil
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