THIS morning a giant tombstone was unveiled outside the Scottish Parliament to highlight the eight cyclists who have lost their lives in Scotland in 2013.
Of course, demonstrations and appeals to MSPs on cycling are nothing new. But today’s heartbreaking stand is not just about funding, or about car versus bike. It is about the fundamental safety of those who travel on two wheels. The evidence is all around us that collectively we must do more.
Our elected representatives can of course lobby the Scottish Government and local councils for greater funding to improve infrastructure.
The courts too, must do more. The shockingly lenient sentence delivered to Gary McCourt after he was convicted of causing the death of Audrey Fyfe shows that we do not take crimes of this nature seriously. But the greatest change must come from within. Car, van and lorry drivers must realise that all road users deserve space. Cyclists must accept that they too need to obey the Highway Code. And parents should encourage their children to cycle with care.
A fit, healthy and sustainable Scotland must include a strong population of cyclists. For that to happen, we all need to feel safe on the roads.
Answers on way
THE news today that former Lord Advocate Dame Elish Angiolini has interviewed two former bosses at Mortonhall Crematorium, George Bell and Ann Grannum, is encouraging for all who want to get to the bottom of the ashes scandal. Dame Elish is due to publish preliminary results of her inquiry soon, ahead of a full report in the autumn.
The fact she has been able to question two of the key people who were running the crematorium should give confidence that the inquiry will get to the root of the issue and provide answers for the many grieving parents.