George Ferguson was the first of Bristol’s mayoral candidates to answer our questions on cycling, now a more controversial candidate has given us his views on the subject. This candidate changed his name by deed poll to ‘Mr Corrupt Self Serving Lying Thieving B’stard’ ready for November election, here’s what he had to say:
Do you cycle? If so, what sort of cyclist would you describe yourself? (eg commuter, wobbler, lycra-wearer)
Cycle everywhere because I don't drive. I'll be honest though, I am considering finally learning to drive, because I now have a 21 month old daughter and travelling on public transport, especially longer distances, like when going camping, is a bit too much of a nightmare, especially busy trains, with zero luggage storage, but that’s not the issue here is it.
In general terms, what is your opinion of cyclists in Bristol? (eg congestion busting, eco-warriors; above the law bunch of *****; other)
They're Human Beings just like everyone else. Some are considerate eco busting warriors, some are angry aggressive above the law types. Walking with my daughter down the Bristol to bath cycle path is taking our life into our hands sometimes, in fact at times I would feel safer walking on the motorway. However, I acknowledge that it’s a transport route and people have busy lives, it’s just a pity because it’s a lovely walk.
What in your view are the biggest problems faced by cyclists in Bristol?
Getting killed on the roads. There are nowhere near enough wide, safe, cycle only paths in Bristol
What was your opinion of Bristol as a Cycling City?
I was a bit harsh in my comment above, I think Bristol has done a lot to create more cycling routes, but it needs a whole lot more. Amsterdam is a cycling city, Bristol is not....Yet!!
If there was one thing you could do to improve cycling in the city, what would it be?
More wide, safe, cycle only paths.
The Greater Bristol Cycling Strategy 2011-2026 has targets of 20% of all journeys by bike by 2026 (with an intermediate target of 9% by 2015). The baseline figure was 4% of all journeys in 2008 Do you endorse these targets?
The same strategy suggests that funding should be allocated at £11 per capita across the strategy area, rising to £20 in target areas. If elected, would you commit this level of resources to cycling?
If elected, I propose to introduce the Automated Payment Transaction Tax (a small percentage tax on all transactions involving money i.e. a tax on spending rather than income) this could raise the money that would enable me to commit to these levels of resources.
Will you endorse the Times Campaign 8 point manifesto?
What other measures would you seek to introduce which either directly or indirectly will promote cycling? Do you have any other comments about cycling, walking or other methods of sustainable travel?
It is my single manifesto promise to pay every adult in Bristol an Unconditional Basic Income of £15,000 every year, funded by the Automated Payment Transaction Tax (a small percentage tax on all transactions involving money i.e. a tax on spending rather than income).
Being "gifted" an Unconditional Basic Income will give every adult the choice to run a business or work for someone else in order to earn extra money, but will also give every adult the freedom to follow their Passion in life and contribute it to the community of Bristol "Just For The Love Of It".
The Unconditional Basic Income would revolutionize the way society works, eliminating poverty, improving health, reducing crime and would therefore also affect transport needs and the ways people travel.
Maybe people would need less journeys in general, maybe, with more free time to spend, people would use slower methods of travel, like walking or cycling, maybe someone’s passion is to set up a community transport company, where people work for free and they just need to cover costs.
Heck maybe we’ll see a lot more rickshaws.
I also have one other thing I would do.
I would sack "first bus" and give the contract to "Lothian buses" from Edinburgh. They run a service in Edinburgh that matches the tube in London. It has abundant routes, abundant services, usually a bus every 10 minutes, and a bus pass costs £48 a month. This would fill the buses and reduce congestion, making the roads a lot safer for cyclists and pedestrians. Job Done.
Let us know what you think to Mr Corrupt Self Serving Lying Thieving B’stard’s responses to our cycling based questions by commenting below, we’d love to hear your views.