26 June 2010

Attending Mass: CM reclaims picture postcard London

It was a lovely evening for Critical Mass last night: a balmy June evening, and a spontaneous reclamation of the streets round some picture-postcard bits of London. For a few minutes Waterloo Bridge, Parliament Square, Whitehall, Horseguards Parade and the approach to Buckingham Palace were all ours.

A recent fashion among car drivers waiting for the cycle crocodile to pass is to hold their horns on continuously, to show their support. Perhaps they've been inspired by the World Cup vuvuzelas, and want to recreate that delightful swarm-of-hornets sound.

I peeled off around Buck House. I had a party to attend. Not there, obviously - it was in Vauxhall. And in the time it took me to look up the address on the A to Z - maybe two or three minutes - the entire CM had moved on without trace, and traffic was flowing as freely as ever.

So however annoying it might appear to an impatient cabbie, CM only disrupts the traffic for a very, very short time, once a month, on a few slivers of road.

Which makes it a failure. Or a success. Or something. Whatever it makes it, it proves I was right all along.


  1. Cars and Trucks and those Infernal Black Cabs cause Traffic Jams all the time but they do not on any circumstances attempt to get out of the way of Cyclists. When the Ball is on the other Foot so to Speak they get Shirty when the Road is full of Masses of Cyclists and expect them to Part like the Dead Sea and let Motorists Barge their way through.

    Cyclists are entitled to be on the Road just as much as them. In fact Traffic should be Barred in Cities and Towns,it should only be for Pedestrians and Cyclists.

  2. more pics here: http://annacyclestoparis.blogspot.com/2010/06/critical-mass-june-10.html


  3. What's with all the annoying pointless Capital Letters, cher homme au vélo?

  4. Oh, don't be so hard on the chap. I think they lend a rather grand Regency feel to things. In fact, a few of those elongated Ss that look like Fs would add something too.

    You know the sort of thing: 'A PROCESSION of Cyclifts, many decorated with Tattooes & outlandishly Drefs'd, occupying the Entire Street, to the Confternation and Choleric of the Hackney-carriage Drivers, Omnibufes, &c.'

  5. Was I being so hard? But your first sentence proves my point - a capital R is useful for Regency, but not for other words.