Time for revision?

indalo

Banned
Sep 13, 2009
1,380
1
Herts & Spain
I think, increasingly, I'm turning into Victor Meldrew. My latest irritation, one which really bothers me driving my car rather than riding my bike, is the number of horses on the road in the rural area around where I live.

Horses occupy a larger piece of road space than bicycles yet riding them on our roads seems less regulated than the riding of bikes, unless somebody knows better. There has been a number of occasions on which I have been driving round a fast, sweeping bend only to find I need to apply the anchors sharply as the left side of the road has become a bridle path. Fortunately, I don't drive very fast and have never been close to actually colliding with the beasts but the kind of roads I refer to are regulated only by the national speed limit yet most of the bends are blind and signage is lacking.

There is one road in particular, a hill, on which I no longer ride my bike as I have had a few near misses with vehicles. Curiously, it seems to me that when a vehicle comes racing up behind me, the driver braking hard until he sees an opportunity to pass, I am then overtaken with very little clearance. Those drivers give much more clearance when passing horses. Has anyone else noticed that?

For me, horses have no place on our roads in this day and age and are simply an anachronism. Can you imagine the gridlock in our major cities if a bunch of horses were ridden, especially two abreast, at walking pace every rush hour? Apart from that, is it right that councils can prosecute dog owners for failing to clean up after their dog yet horses **** rather large smelly stuff over our roads, the owners seemingly enjoying no risk of prosecution? I know horse muck is good for the garden but no-one ever seems to pick up the stuff from my local roads and I can really recommend avoiding it with your bike tyres!

Legislation which interferes with fairly basic freedoms is not something that rests easily with me and I was never in favour of the compulsory wearing of helmets for m/cyclists, nor the compulsory wearing of seat belts for drivers although I am well aware of the arguments. I have a worry that one day soon, legislation of the same ilk will be created with regard to cycling helmets yet the horsey types will still be allowed to do as they please.

There are times when I'd like to drive all over the local farms and equestrian centres in a big 4WD machine just to annoy the landowners but I suppose that would be churlish.......just how much is the road tax for a horse? Plus....plus....is there any type approval requirement for them.....MOT, insurance? Do vehicle lighting regulations apply? Is there any maximum wattage requirement?

Actually, I quite like horses. They just seem so right at places like Epsom, Ascot and Aintree. Strangely, I doubt if the horses that perform at those places ever spend any time on the roads.

Indalo
(I don't believe it!)
 

mike killay

Esteemed Pedelecer
Feb 17, 2011
2,842
1,461
I am not too fussed about horses. The main answer is for side paths on all roads. To a certain extent, Belgium appears to have done this by painting a white line on one side of the road and moving the carriageway over a bit.
Last week end, using my campervan, I towed my boat to a lake in Mid Wales. Some of the A roads were so narrow that there was only room for one vehicle each way. At one straight, there was a vehicule coming towards me, I guess we were both doing about 50 mph. I then noticed a cyclist, dressed in black also approaching me. It became obvious that all three of us were going to pass each other at the same time, (ie, the oncoming vehicle would move out into my carriageway to pass the bike, just as I passed the oncoming vehicle). Now these roads have recently been resurfaced. It seems to me high time that councils should be required to add an extra two foot to the width, this is only a foot each side and should not normally be too expensive.
 

vectra

Pedelecer
Feb 5, 2011
212
4
I think, increasingly, I'm turning into Victor Meldrew. My latest irritation, one which really bothers me driving my car rather than riding my bike, is the number of horses on the road in the rural area around where I live.

Horses occupy a larger piece of road space than bicycles yet riding them on our roads seems less regulated than the riding of bikes, unless somebody knows better. There has been a number of occasions on which I have been driving round a fast, sweeping bend only to find I need to apply the anchors sharply as the left side of the road has become a bridle path. Fortunately, I don't drive very fast and have never been close to actually colliding with the beasts but the kind of roads I refer to are regulated only by the national speed limit yet most of the bends are blind and signage is lacking.

There is one road in particular, a hill, on which I no longer ride my bike as I have had a few near misses with vehicles. Curiously, it seems to me that when a vehicle comes racing up behind me, the driver braking hard until he sees an opportunity to pass, I am then overtaken with very little clearance. Those drivers give much more clearance when passing horses. Has anyone else noticed that?

For me, horses have no place on our roads in this day and age and are simply an anachronism. Can you imagine the gridlock in our major cities if a bunch of horses were ridden, especially two abreast, at walking pace every rush hour? Apart from that, is it right that councils can prosecute dog owners for failing to clean up after their dog yet horses **** rather large smelly stuff over our roads, the owners seemingly enjoying no risk of prosecution? I know horse muck is good for the garden but no-one ever seems to pick up the stuff from my local roads and I can really recommend avoiding it with your bike tyres!

Legislation which interferes with fairly basic freedoms is not something that rests easily with me and I was never in favour of the compulsory wearing of helmets for m/cyclists, nor the compulsory wearing of seat belts for drivers although I am well aware of the arguments. I have a worry that one day soon, legislation of the same ilk will be created with regard to cycling helmets yet the horsey types will still be allowed to do as they please.

There are times when I'd like to drive all over the local farms and equestrian centres in a big 4WD machine just to annoy the landowners but I suppose that would be churlish.......just how much is the road tax for a horse? Plus....plus....is there any type approval requirement for them.....MOT, insurance? Do vehicle lighting regulations apply? Is there any maximum wattage requirement?

Actually, I quite like horses. They just seem so right at places like Epsom, Ascot and Aintree. Strangely, I doubt if the horses that perform at those places ever spend any time on the roads.

Indalo
(I don't believe it!)
Hi.
Amazing! There are many out there who would dearly like to write the same kind of nonsense about cyclists! I live in a rural area. I drive in the knowledge that horses, cyclists, walkers, cattle, deer and other wild animals are about. Horses, I give a wide berth and pass at a very slow speed which inevitably brings a gesture of thanks form the rider.

It seems the only "right" type of horse is one that you could place a bet on? I can't believe this topic is other than a complete wind-up? I trust that consideration what what you were actually writing about?
Regards
vectra
 
C

Cyclezee

Guest
Hi Victor, oops I mean Indalo:p

I actually quite like horses, but couldn't eat a whole one:eek:

Used to ride when I was a kid, but falling off whilst riding bareback and being trampled followed by a week in hospital was rather off putting.

I'm merely and apprentice Victor Meldrew, I have a friend who is my tutor, he even looks and sounds like Victor.

Sorry if this post is off thread.............one more thing to moan about:rolleyes:
 

steveindenmark

Esteemed Pedelecer
Apr 10, 2011
406
2
Hey Victor,

Horses have every much as right to be on the road as old geezers with dodgy eyesight, dicky tickers and suspect reactions.

In fact as you are a member in this forum I can only assume you are looking to save the planet so sell the car and buy a horse. Not only do you save the planet, you will never have to mow the lawn again.

If all the above is all too much hassle just SLOW DOWN.

Steve
 

HarryB

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jan 22, 2007
1,317
3
London
I learnt about overtaking horses at a very early age as my mother (who was a self confessed awful driver) got too close to one and it made quite an impression on the wing. It was worse because she was out in the Bentley rather than the Renault 4 which would have been an easier repair. Really though I wish people would drive at a speed they could stop from if there was an obstruction in the road, be it a bike, horse or walker (or a car broken down). I lay blame at the speed freaks who are obsessed with speed limits, drumming the message into our heads. You then get the "I wasn't speeding 'cos it was a 60, and I was only doing 59".

PS should this be in the charging post section?
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,167
22,882
Most horse riding and driving regulations are detailed in the Highway Code, their regulation includes such things as hand and whip signals and lighting at night time (yes really!).

In my area much of my driving and riding is in the very horsey area of North East Surrey and I make the necessary allowances. I'm always ready to slow right down to a crawl when driving and acknowledge the rider(s), recognising the intrinsic difficult of their having a vehicle with it's own mind and free will.

Yes, they are an anachronism, but they were here first so I accept their prior rights, just like those of the other anachronisms in the modern world like deer, badgers and wild boar. Personally I think all these anachronisms immeasurably enrich our lives, long may they exist.
 

lemmy

Esteemed Pedelecer
Yes, they are an anachronism, but they were here first so I accept their prior rights, just like those of the other anachronisms in the modern world like deer, badgers and wild boar. Personally I think all these anachronisms immeasurably enrich our lives, long may they exist.
Absolutely, in spades and with knobs on!
 

Teejay

Pedelecer
Jan 22, 2008
74
12
NW London
It strikes me Indalo's post is really a satire on the increasing trend for Governments over the last 30 years or so to enact legislation that, instead of stopping us harming others in some way, forces us to do things they think are good for us (or prevents us from doing something they see as bad) as individuals.

So he's quite right in saying compulsory helmet wearing or seat-belt wearing should not have been enacted. Like him, I fear for our futures as cyclists, electric or manual. Whatever our individual choice in the matter, we should make it clear to our legislators that helmet compulsion would be quite unacceptable as well as undesirable.

Quite the worst example of this mindset has been the accursed smoking ban in pubs and clubs. Fancy, having a fag with your pint in a pub as a criminal act. How absurd! No wonder pubs are closing at the rate they are :mad:
 

TylerD

Pedelecer
Jul 8, 2010
175
0
Actually, I quite like horses. They just seem so right at places like Epsom, Ascot and Aintree. Strangely, I doubt if the horses that perform at those places ever spend any time on the roads.

Indalo
(I don't believe it!)
Yes they do actually, in big, smelly gas guzzling horseboxes so maybe we should ban these too? In fact if we could only get rid of all other vehicles except the ones with a maximum assisted speed of 15mph from our roads that would be perfect. Until the pedestrians ganged up on us and made us get rid of our electric bikes.:D
 

steveindenmark

Esteemed Pedelecer
Apr 10, 2011
406
2
I have owned 2 horses and Jannie has also owned 2 horses.

It is like everything else unless we learn about something we are pretty ignorant.

I used to think electric bikes were for old geezers just about to pop their clogs.....but I have educated myself ;Ø)

Steve
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,167
22,882
we should make it clear to our legislators that helmet compulsion would be quite unacceptable as well as undesirable.
There's no need Teejay. Our governments have repeatedly blocked all attempts to bring in helmet compulsion for cyclists, including blocking a determined and repeated attempt to get compulsion for children.

That's because they want to encourage cycling to be widespread and know all the evidence that compulsion drastically reduces cycling rates. The attitudes of almost all European governments are the same.

I will not see helmet wearing compulsion for cyclists in Britain in my lifetime, and you probably won't in yours either.
 

funkylyn

Esteemed Pedelecer
Feb 22, 2011
3,172
27
South Shields, Tyne & Wear
I'm sort of with you Victor especially the poo bit !
And its easy for people to say we should drive slower but to be honest, if you come across a horse suddenly on a bend you would have to be going at well under the legal speed limit to have any chance of avoiding damage.
Whilst I was always taught to be constantly aware of what is, or may be, going on ahead on the road, to suddenly slow to 10mph whilst going around bends on country roads is surely unrealistic ?
However, we do have to live and let live and all have more consideration for other road users and yes, the sensible answer for ALL slow moving road users (horses AND people) is to have a 'safe track' at the side of every road but I'm afraid that is in 'dream on' territory.........and dont worry TOO much about turning into Victor Meldrew.....it happens to ALL men after a certain age.......just dont go trying to make telephone calls with very cute daxie puppies (they dont have the correct dialling tone ) :) :)

Lynda
 

HarryB

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jan 22, 2007
1,317
3
London
And its easy for people to say we should drive slower but to be honest, if you come across a horse suddenly on a bend you would have to be going at well under the legal speed limit to have any chance of avoiding damage.


Lynda
That is the point I am making - the speed limit is not the safe speed for that road all the time. I think we have been spoon fed so much safety that we assume that somebody has gone over every road and worked out a speed limit. This is clearly nonsensical and you have to drive at a speed at which you know you can stop from in case of an obstruction. Some knowledge of stopping distances and what your car is capable of helps but nowadays drivers are so insulated from reality that they happily drive at the wrong speed. The worst offenders being those that rigidly stick to the speed limit thinking they are the safest on the road.
 

funkylyn

Esteemed Pedelecer
Feb 22, 2011
3,172
27
South Shields, Tyne & Wear
That is the point I am making - the speed limit is not the safe speed for that road all the time. I think we have been spoon fed so much safety that we assume that somebody has gone over every road and worked out a speed limit. This is clearly nonsensical and you have to drive at a speed at which you know you can stop from in case of an obstruction. Some knowledge of stopping distances and what your car is capable of helps but nowadays drivers are so insulated from reality that they happily drive at the wrong speed. The worst offenders being those that rigidly stick to the speed limit thinking they are the safest on the road.
Yes, I understand what you are saying, the point I was trying to make is that it is impossible to slow down to 10mph on every bend on a country road, which to be honest would be the only way of avoiding a very slow moving horse/pedestrian encountered on a sharp bend , it just isnt practical, we just have to drive carefully, be aware , and make sure that our tyres and brakes are in good working order ....as you say, if everyone had a realistic knowledge of their car stopping distances it would be a help.......it can be just as dangerous sometimes to drive too slowly....
 

NRG

Esteemed Pedelecer
Oct 6, 2009
2,593
10
If you cant stop within the distance you can see ahead then you are travelling too fast. Its as simple as that.
 

Bob_about

Pedelecer
Nov 17, 2009
113
1
Warks/Glos Border
If you cant stop within the distance you can see ahead then you are travelling too fast. Its as simple as that.
Completely agree

I think there is much here around how safe people feel in their insulated metal boxes which promotes risk taking.

I have done it myself going faster round a bend I know from years of travelling the same route - on one occassion the front of my car ended up under the back of a combine harvester with me looking up at the insides - I missed its back wheels by a fraction of an inch!

I am less likely to go round a bend too fast on my Honda PCX - the consequences of coming accross something I cannot avoid at 60mph (and yes it will go that fast) seem a little more real!

Line of sight is incredibly important - as anyone who paddles white water in a kayak to any significant grade will tell you - not knowing whats round that next bend in the river when it could be a significant waterfall can sharpen your senses a little!

I`d be an advocate of making every potential driver spend some time on a bicycle or scooter for a month before they are permitted in a car!

All the best

Bob_about
 

eTim

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 19, 2009
607
2
Andover, Hants.
I've had a few lessons on riding a horse, the amount of fun and satisfaction you get from riding a horse outstrips the fun to be had on an ebike. Long live the horse!