Going Dutch in 1990

Road Safety debate, from Hansard, 16 November 1990.

Mr Anthony Steen (South Hams)
My hon. Friend mentioned cycling. Great progress has been made in our major cities to provide for cyclists. I think that about 90,000 cyclists come into London every day, and the number is increasing. Are the Government going to make progress, so that cars are cleared off the principal routes and cycle tracks are provided throughout the capital, so that we can get about much better on two wheels than on four?

A few weeks ago, I spent a couple of days cycling in Copenhagen, where it is totally safe. Everybody is cycling because the entire city has been designed for cyclists. The same is true of Holland. There is no reason why this should not be done in London. The problem in London is too many cars: it is as simple as that. We must reduce the number of cars, but we will not do so simply by having many more traffic wardens; that just means more public expenditure.

You might remember Steen's successor in Totnes (formerly South Hams), from the Cities Fit For Cycling discussion, 22 years later:

Sarah Wollaston (Totnes, Conservative)
…I am grateful to my many constituents who have written to me today to give me their ideas, one of which was on speed limits. I know that other hon. Members have referred to this, but the Netherlands is rolling out changing to 60 kph on rural networks. That is the equivalent of 40 mph, as Nia Griffith said. Will the Minister consider that change? It is disappointing to hear that perhaps that is not something the Department will press forward with. On behalf of all hon. Members, I press him to reconsider…

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