27 Mar 2012

Rolling With Clover

Posted by Mike Rubbo

If you’ve  read recent posts, followed the news in this town, you’ll know that that our Mayor, Clover Moore , has been under intense attack for her pro bike policies.

Egged on by the Tabloid press, the new state Premier is threatening to rip out the five kilometers of separated bike paths which the city Government has already built, plus block further construction

This has to be opposed. We want the whole separated path  network installed, all 55 kms of it.

We want to be able to  ride safely around the city on private and public bikes .

We’re Rolling with Clover, this  coming Sunday, April first.  starting at noon at the Town hall.

Clover’ll be there, I’m told, to see how we go.

We’re hoping hundreds of you will come to ride the hour and a half hour circuit,  ending up at Town hall again, and taking in some of the new separated bike ways.

We  want to extend a special invitation  to  visitors to Sydney, cyclists from other countries

My Friend,  Patrick Jeffery,   is working his way around the  the backpacker packer hostels this week to explain what we have in mind

The idea is that what you know about cycling in your home country,  can be useful here.

If you come from some city were bikes are big, public bike schemes thriving, please come along to tell us about it.

No doubt you’ve wondered  why you don’t see many people using bikes as transport here.

No doubt you’ve wondered where our public bikes are.

You have no bike  to ride in our rally most probably, but come anyway to the start of ride, noon at the Town Hall on George street,  and tell our cameras what it’s  like  where you live.

We expect the mainstream press to come.

Tell them Clover Moore is on the right track, that from your experience in Berlin, Copenhagen, Amsterdam, Paris, wherever, that  separated bike paths do work, that they increase cycling, making  it safer, more pleasant.

Whether the press pays attention or not, I’ll be there with my camera,  and a movie, featuring your comments,  will be up on Youtube very soon after the event.

For those who can ride, there will be two prizes given. One for the best video of the actual ride.

The second for the most business-like rider, in appearance,  that is.

The The Daily Telegraph has recently claimed that business men and women don’t ride bikes  in this city. We want to show them that’s wrong.

In both cases,  the prize will be Bike Art worth $250 which I’m donating.

It could be these solar prints.

Or a lino cut.

or a rubbing.

There will also be a prize for the visitor who tells the best story about cycling elsewhere, who turns up either with or without a bike.

Sitting in a Sydney cafe this week planning the rally, a hip young architect stroked his phone screen and called up London’s public bike scheme, the famous Boris bikes.

His fingers,  by turns squeezing and spreading across the small screen,   conjured  up for me   the hundreds of docking stations across London and then,  where the 5000 blue bikes actually were….


…..at that very moment.

If we’d been in London, we could have walked round the corner, knowing  that 5 bikes out of 25 , were waiting for us to hop on and ride.

It was a gob smacking demonstration of,  the beyond-modern meets classic  technology.

For bikes are classic stuff, you know, essentially unchanged in the long stretch of  130 years

Ah, what a shame that there’s no such public bike scheme as yet in Sydney, one  that this architect could call up on his phone.

No bikes outside on Albion st. that we could ride to the next event in our busy day.

See you on sunday.

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2 Responses to “Rolling With Clover”

  1. All the best for Sunday, Mike!!! I’m with you in spirit.



  2. I have to say looking from Queensland I have been completely discussed with your new Premier. I only visit Sydney about once a year and have scene the amount of people cycling ballon. Even my other half who does not ride is amazed.

    I have been whole heartly impressed with your mayor who has made the hard decisions but still done it and done it well.

    it is takky but

    “roll on clover roll on”


    Donald Campbell

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