Forum home Road cycling forum The bottom bracket

Road Tax / Licence

saifsaif Posts: 100
edited November 2007 in The bottom bracket
Would this help improve the life of cyclists in any way ?

Should we have licence for Cycling 0 votes

Yes
0% 0 votes
No
0% 0 votes

Posts

  • Rob SallnowRob Sallnow Posts: 6,279
    Given that some very small cars are zero rated due to their very low emmisions how much do you think Bike Excise Duty is going to cost.
    I'd rather walk than use Shimano
  • Um.

    On the one hand it might improve standards of cycling and help educate some of the suicidal gutter-wobblers I see every day in dark clothing with no lights in pitch darkness.

    On the other, it'd probably put some people off taking up cycling - and as soon as the gubmint has a way of making money out of us, they will.

    Can't decide. Has it been done anywhere else? What was the result?
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • CunobelinCunobelin Posts: 11,792
    I pay the full taxation for my vehicle class and I am insured......

    Where do we go from here?
    <b><i>He that buys land buys many stones.
    He that buys flesh buys many bones.
    He that buys eggs buys many shells,
    But he that buys good beer buys nothing else.</b></i>
    (Unattributed Trad.)
  • on the roadon the road Posts: 5,631
    This is a silly thread :roll:
  • only when the motor car has died. How about asking the question about bikies taking a test? maybe not.....
  • CunobelinCunobelin Posts: 11,792
    OK...

    I pay the full taxation for the vehicle class, I am insured and have passed the required National Standard Test for Cycling (Cycling Proficiency in 1968)

    Where do we go from here?
    <b><i>He that buys land buys many stones.
    He that buys flesh buys many bones.
    He that buys eggs buys many shells,
    But he that buys good beer buys nothing else.</b></i>
    (Unattributed Trad.)
  • I took the 1977 cycling proficiency test - it was much harder than the '68 version so you need to undergo an intesnive weeks training and testing... :wink:
  • You should have tried the 2001 CPT. It was like Bad Lads Army.... but for 11 year olds.
  • ivancarlosivancarlos Posts: 1,034
    How about a licence for Shanks' Pony as well? :wink:
    I have pain!
  • Let's extend it way out, I've always advocated:

    Test for pushchairs: 'You are not in the red arrows, so don't process down the high street in formation, line abreast.' 'You do not have automatic right of way.'

    Tests for umbrellas: 'If you're short the spikey things around the umbrella are right at my eye level so be a bit careful eh love?' 'If you are one person, in a high street and not on a golf couse, you do not need an umbrella the size of belgium' 'Bear in mind that they'll go up down but they won't come down up. Think on.'
    There's always one more idiot than you bargained for.
  • BronzieBronzie Posts: 4,927
    They can't even enforce the current scheme for motorised vehicles properly yet (although Automatic Numberplate Recognition is a major new weapon) - how exactly could any scheme for pedal cycles be enforced (presuming it had any benefit, which I can't see it does)?
  • BigWombleBigWomble Posts: 455
    Rob Sallnow's point about VED is spot on. There is no feasible way to tax VED on bicycles. Indeed, it's more than about time that VAT was taken off bicycles.

    At the time of the 'penny farthing', the bicycle was smaller and more vulnerable than a horse and carriage, but at least it was faster (20mph v. 12mph). Now, the horseless carriage is even bigger and faster (20mph v. 35mph). At least the bicycle is on the road as a matter of right, and the car driver is only there by permission. Imagine if the cyclist was licensed.

    Firstly, the minority of car drivers who go for cyclists would if anything go for them more, and the classic defence of cycling by right would no longer be there. Secondly, many people who currently cycle couldn't do so, for example, children, and ex-prisoners. I learnt to ride a bicycle as a child, with licensing I wouldn't have been able to. We also want to rehabilitate criminals, and giving them a bicycle and training them to use it gives them the transport they need to start out in life.

    Thirdly, it won't be long before there are calls to remove cyclists from certain categories of road (they get in my way, it's for their own good).

    If people were really serious about increasing the safety of cyclists then they would provide cycle training, as follows:

    1. Provide it everywhere in the UK, not just some councils.
    2. Provide it free of charge (since persuading people that bicycles should cost more than £50 is going to be difficult, and charging £20/hr on top isn't going to work).
    3. Offer it at the time of purchase.

    Point 3 is important. I bought my older bicycle in Cheltenham, and paid the princely sum of £170 for it. I then had to get it home, not having ridden a bicycle in over 10 years. I was a bit rusty. I made it home, but there was lot of wobbling going on. :oops: It would be better, I think, to offer them free :D training when they buy the bicycle and take the bicycle to the training centre in the back of a van. That way, they start out cycling on the road after some training, and not before it.
    Ta - Arabic for moo-cow
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    As long as I can get a refund for the two cars that are sitting on the drive when I cycle anywhere! As VED is supposed to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the roads, us cyclists should be entitled to a refund!
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • BigWomble wrote:
    Rob Sallnow's point about VED is spot on. There is no feasible way to tax VED on bicycles. Indeed, it's more than about time that VAT was taken off bicycles.
    I agree with you about the VAT, but I'm sure a way would be found to levy VED on bikes if the gubmint thought the resulting revenue would be worth it. Fortunately, under the current VED regime they'd be zero rated anyway (as are all zero emission vehicles) so it's unlikely anybody will bother going to the trouble and expense to do it.
    BigWomble wrote:
    At the time of the 'penny farthing', the bicycle was smaller and more vulnerable than a horse and carriage, but at least it was faster (20mph v. 12mph). Now, the horseless carriage is even bigger and faster (20mph v. 35mph). At least the bicycle is on the road as a matter of right, and the car driver is only there by permission. Imagine if the cyclist was licensed.

    Firstly, the minority of car drivers who go for cyclists would if anything go for them more, and the classic defence of cycling by right would no longer be there.
    I might be completely missing your point here, but I don't think the average cardine would give a toss whether bikes are licensed or not, beyond a bit of schadenfreude.
    BigWomble wrote:
    Secondly, many people who currently cycle couldn't do so, for example, children, and ex-prisoners. I learnt to ride a bicycle as a child, with licensing I wouldn't have been able to. We also want to rehabilitate criminals, and giving them a bicycle and training them to use it gives them the transport they need to start out in life.
    With you on the children, though there's no reason why the lower age limit for taking the test couldn't be, say, ten or twelve - and kids younger could be allowed to cycle on the roads if accompanied by a licensed adult.

    Why on earth do you assume that ex-prisoners wouldn't be allowed to hold a license?
    BigWomble wrote:
    Thirdly, it won't be long before there are calls to remove cyclists from certain categories of road (they get in my way, it's for their own good).
    Those calls are made already, again I don't see that licensing has any relevance to it.
    BigWomble wrote:
    If people were really serious about increasing the safety of cyclists then they would provide cycle training, as follows:

    1. Provide it everywhere in the UK, not just some councils.
    2. Provide it free of charge (since persuading people that bicycles should cost more than £50 is going to be difficult, and charging £20/hr on top isn't going to work).
    3. Offer it at the time of purchase.

    Point 3 is important. I bought my older bicycle in Cheltenham, and paid the princely sum of £170 for it. I then had to get it home, not having ridden a bicycle in over 10 years. I was a bit rusty. I made it home, but there was lot of wobbling going on. :oops: It would be better, I think, to offer them free :D training when they buy the bicycle and take the bicycle to the training centre in the back of a van. That way, they start out cycling on the road after some training, and not before it.
    Sounds like a good idea. I don't know that the majority of people would necessarily ride their first bike home (I didn't, simply because I wasn't fit enough to ride the three or four miles home) but giving a training voucher with every bike purchased, and the option for immediate training if required, would presumably increase the uptake.

    Just to make it clear, I'm not particularly in favour of bike licensing - just playing Devil's advocate. 8)
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • GarybeeGarybee Posts: 815
    Some very sensible comments on this thread above. We need incentives to get people cycling, not barriers to stop them.

    Hypocrisy is only a bad thing in other people.
  • BigWombleBigWomble Posts: 455
    Shadowduck wrote:
    BigWomble wrote:
    At the time of the 'penny farthing', the bicycle was smaller and more vulnerable than a horse and carriage, but at least it was faster (20mph v. 12mph). Now, the horseless carriage is even bigger and faster (20mph v. 35mph). At least the bicycle is on the road as a matter of right, and the car driver is only there by permission. Imagine if the cyclist was licensed.

    Firstly, the minority of car drivers who go for cyclists would if anything go for them more, and the classic defence of cycling by right would no longer be there.
    I might be completely missing your point here, but I don't think the average cardine would give a toss whether bikes are licensed or not, beyond a bit of schadenfreude.
    Well, on the road, if the odd car driver wants to cause trouble, then no. But these things are decided in public debate, and it is from the public debate that attitudes are learnt. It is a key point that cyclists are not the censored end of motoring. On the contrary, cyclists have a right to be there. It helps to balance the fact that cyclists are in a minority.
    BigWomble wrote:
    Secondly, many people who currently cycle couldn't do so, for example, children, and ex-prisoners. I learnt to ride a bicycle as a child, with licensing I wouldn't have been able to. We also want to rehabilitate criminals, and giving them a bicycle and training them to use it gives them the transport they need to start out in life.
    Shadowduck wrote:
    With you on the children, though there's no reason why the lower age limit for taking the test couldn't be, say, ten or twelve - and kids younger could be allowed to cycle on the roads if accompanied by a licensed adult.

    Why on earth do you assume that ex-prisoners wouldn't be allowed to hold a license?
    .
    I was out on the roads, by myself, way earlier than secondary school - as are plenty of children round here, on scooters and bicycles. I wouldn't want to increase the restrictions on children further. The way we're going, children won't have a childhood anymore.

    Governments of all hues, these days, believe that there is nothing wrong with being more reactionary on crime than the next person. Rehabilitation of criminals is not a popular topic. I may well be healthily paranoid, but I wouldn't trust most politicians on this one.
    BigWomble wrote:
    Thirdly, it won't be long before there are calls to remove cyclists from certain categories of road (they get in my way, it's for their own good).
    Those calls are made already, again I don't see that licensing has any relevance to it.
    Quite the contrary, it is fundamental. To each call to remove cyclists from various roads, the defense is always that they have a fundamental right to be there. When licensing is brought in, then the right disappears. It is now a permission, and gaining a license indicates acceptance of the conditions for that permission, as they vary from time to time. One day, politicians could decide that there's some easy votes in limiting cyclists, probably following some road accident or further restriction on car drivers.
    BigWomble wrote:
    If people were really serious about increasing the safety of cyclists then they would provide cycle training, as follows:

    1. Provide it everywhere in the UK, not just some councils.
    2. Provide it free of charge (since persuading people that bicycles should cost more than £50 is going to be difficult, and charging £20/hr on top isn't going to work).
    3. Offer it at the time of purchase.

    Point 3 is important. I bought my older bicycle in Cheltenham, and paid the princely sum of £170 for it. I then had to get it home, not having ridden a bicycle in over 10 years. I was a bit rusty. I made it home, but there was lot of wobbling going on. :oops: It would be better, I think, to offer them free :D training when they buy the bicycle and take the bicycle to the training centre in the back of a van. That way, they start out cycling on the road after some training, and not before it.
    Sounds like a good idea. I don't know that the majority of people would necessarily ride their first bike home (I didn't, simply because I wasn't fit enough to ride the three or four miles home) but giving a training voucher with every bike purchased, and the option for immediate training if required, would presumably increase the uptake.

    Just to make it clear, I'm not particularly in favour of bike licensing - just playing Devil's advocate. 8)
    Ta - Arabic for moo-cow
  • BigWombleBigWomble Posts: 455
    Defn: Surreal

    In fact, I think last time I was in favour of licensing. I guess I've changed my mind. :roll:
    Ta - Arabic for moo-cow
  • bryanmbryanm Posts: 270
    Monty Dog wrote:
    As long as I can get a refund for the two cars that are sitting on the drive when I cycle anywhere! As VED is supposed to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the roads, us cyclists should be entitled to a refund!

    No, no, no, no.....

    VED does not pay for road building or maintenance!
  • CunobelinCunobelin Posts: 11,792
    bryanm wrote:
    Monty Dog wrote:
    As long as I can get a refund for the two cars that are sitting on the drive when I cycle anywhere! As VED is supposed to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the roads, us cyclists should be entitled to a refund!

    No, no, no, no.....

    VED does not pay for road building or maintenance!


    Churchill actually voted against "Road Tax" in the originaal debates, as he though that people would "see that it was a tax to pay for the roads and then claim ownership of the roads on the grounds that they had paid or them"

    A very astute person.

    It is all about cooking the figures and what you include and don't include. Even If you decide just to include road building then the figures simply don't add up!

    According to the audit Office the income (including carried over from the previous year) was 4.95 billion, in 2005 / 6 - the road widening scheme of the M! alone eats that up at 5.1 Billion according the Nicholls report!

    Now add other costs like maintenance, policing and accidents and the argument is even less substantial as the subsidy of the motorist by the general tax payer becomes greater.

    The figure will depend on the organisation and bias, some figures from the Green Charities even put the subsidy per vehicle as high as £2000 - 3000 per annum.

    So let's forget this argument as the general taxpayer is the one who pays the largest chunk of road travel costs!
    <b><i>He that buys land buys many stones.
    He that buys flesh buys many bones.
    He that buys eggs buys many shells,
    But he that buys good beer buys nothing else.</b></i>
    (Unattributed Trad.)
  • saifsaif Posts: 100
    There are some very good arguments being presented here .

    Think about other licenses , TV License ? how has that survived ?
    National Standard Test , if combined together with a nominal fees for registration , would that help building up a national cyclist database ? we are happy to register in millions for Oyster cards.

    Could the money collected from licensing , be put to finance some key cycling initiatives ?

    we need more debate on benefits vs drawbacks , what can be achieved of licensing ?
  • bryanmbryanm Posts: 270
    Oyster cards? What's that got to do with anything?
  • BigWomble, I see where you're coming from that licensing would move cycling on the roads from being a right to a priviledge, but I suspect it's too subtle a point to have much effect on things. There's even a possibility licensing would lend us an air of legitimacy in the eyes of the general public, and it would probably remove some of "those" cyclists (the ones that give the rest of us a bad name) from the road, or improve their behaviour.

    As I said, I'm kind of undecided on this one.
    Even if the voices aren't real, they have some very good ideas.
  • saifsaif Posts: 100
    I'm (not) surprised to see that this debate is alive ...

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/7a354dcc-89b0 ... ck_check=1

    check this one too ..

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/4788f4e2-8112 ... fd2ac.html
  • How about give people with licensed bikes salary-based tax relief?
  • nwallacenwallace Posts: 1,465
    VED applies to Cycles used for Trade purposes.

    According to
    This http://www.direct.gov.uk/prod_consum_dg ... dition=Web
    and
    This
    http://www.direct.gov.uk/en/Motoring/Ow ... G_10012524

    Trade Licence for a Bicycles and Tricycles with laden load under 450 kilos is £64 for 12 months. Other Vehicles is £165
    Do Nellyphants count?

    Commuter: FCN 9
    Cheapo Roadie: FCN 5
    Off Road: FCN 11

    +1 when I don't get round to shaving for x days
  • Jon GJon G Posts: 281
    Monty Dog wrote:
    VED is supposed to pay for the maintenance and upkeep of the roads!

    It is not, any more than alcohol excise duty is for maintaining pubs. VED, like alcohol ED is a tax like any other, so the revenue goes to the state's general revenue account. Most highway maintainance is paid for by local authorities.

    Jon
  • saifsaif Posts: 100
    trying to post the links and the article published by Financial Times , again

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/7a354dcc-89b0-1 ... ail=y.html
    Cycle licence proposal could tackle an unbalanced relationship

    Published: November 3 2007 02:00 | Last updated: November 3 2007 02:00

    From Mr Martin Weisinger.

    Sir, I have distributed Richard Tomkins' article to the two-wheeled maniacs in my office (also known as "Lycra louts") with whom I have regular arguments on the subject of lawless cycling.

    The article superbly summarises all my feelings about the subject and so I am just writing to thank Mr Tomkins so much for drawing attention to this terrible disease on the streets of London.

    I feel that the relationship between cars and pedestrians is in general a fair one with both sides understanding where the boundaries lie. However, the relationship between cyclists with both pedestrians and drivers is unbalanced and unjust and needs to be tackled.

    The cycle licence idea is an excellent one and I am amazed that Ken Livingstone has not taken it up, given his penchant for road pricing schemes.

    Martin Weisinger,

    Thames River Capital LLP,

    London W1J 5BB


    and this ..

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/4788f4e2-8112-1 ... ail=y.html

    Proper rules for cyclists

    By Richard Tomkins

    Published: October 26 2007 18:34 | Last updated: October 26 2007 18:34

    Some while ago I read a newspaper story saying male cyclists who rode a lot risked impotence because of the damaging effect of the saddle on their reproductive organs. It quite made my day. In my opinion, anything that stops cyclists breeding is to be welcomed as an unmitigated good.

    I hate cyclists. At least, I hate the ones I see in London every day. Outwardly, they may appear to be nice, respectable, law-abiding, middle-class people, and perhaps they normally are. But the moment they straddle their bikes, something snaps.

    It is not just the self-righteousness that gets to them. It is a deep-seated sense of injustice. On the one hand, they feel smug and superior, yet on the other, they are constantly humiliated by the knowledge of their acute vulnerability. The unfairness of it all fills them with such outrage that they turn into complete nutters, gripped by a desire for vengeance on a world that has wronged them so cruelly.

    Their contempt for the law is breathtaking. They routinely ignore red traffic lights, menacing pedestrians crossing the road when it ought to be safe. They cycle the wrong way along one-way streets, notably outside our local primary school where they play dodge ’em with the parents and children every morning. They race over pedestrian crossings and along the pavements whenever it suits them, the more aggressive of them screaming abuse at anyone who gets in their way. Yet heaven help anyone, car driver or pedestrian, who strays even momentarily into a cycle lane.

    Does it matter? Yes, very much. Obviously, cyclists’ flagrant disrespect for the law is a threat to public safety. It also affects the quality of life in London, not just by making walking unpleasant and sometimes even frightening, but by contributing to a sense of lawlessness and disorder.

    More important, it is bad enough that a particular group of road users should regard themselves as above the law; it is much worse that the government and police should connive in it. Why should cyclists be allowed to commit dangerous traffic offences at will while vast numbers of police, traffic wardens and private sector contractors, assisted by spy cameras and other technology, are ready to pounce on car drivers for even the most trivial violations and punish them with heavy fines, the confiscation of their vehicles or worse?

    It is time London cracked down on cyclists’ behaviour. I do not want to stop people cycling but I do want them to realise that the green halo hovering over their helmets does not put them in a special category of road users to whom no laws apply, any more than cycling to the supermarket gives them the right to shoplift with impunity.

    I realise the difficulty. At present, it is difficult to punish cyclists for breaking the law. The police stop a cyclist for jumping a red light, she gives them a false name and address and off she goes, the wrong way up a one way street. There is nothing much anyone can do.

    Except, there is. It is time to introduce cyclist licensing. All cyclists over the age of 16 using public roads should be required to hold a licence. They would not need to pass a test to obtain one but the system would have to be self-financing, requiring applicants to pay a fee. This is not asking much when you consider that cyclists are otherwise freeloaders on road infrastructure that is overwhelmingly paid for by motorists.

    Licensing would transform enforcement. Cyclists would be required to carry their licences with them at all times, providing proof of their identity. Those stopped for an offence who failed to produce one would have their cycles confiscated until they did so. As with motorists, cyclists endangering pedestrians or other road users would have their licences endorsed, with three offences leading to a ban.

    Today’s piffling fines – £30 for riding on the pavement – should also be drastically raised. Then, enforcement could become self-financing. As with motorists, local authorities could employ teams of wardens to hunt down and penalise errant cyclists, or else turn the job over to private contractors.

    I realise not all cyclists are bad; just a few months ago, I saw one stop at a red light. But the good ones will benefit from these measures if the rest of us hate cyclists less. So that is what I would change. I would introduce cyclist licensing now, for a safer, fairer and altogether more civil society.

    Richard Tomkins is FT’s chief feature writer. This is the second in a series of eight features by FT writers introducing our essay competition

    What would you change?

    If you would like to see your argument for change appear on this page, enter our essay competition and tell us “What I would change”. For terms and conditions and details of how to enter, go to www.ft.com/essay. The winner will receive a made-to-measure men’s or women’s suit courtesy of Huntsman, Savile Row. The winning entry will be published in the FT early next year.

    Copyright The Financial Times Limited 2007
  • Jon GJon G Posts: 281
    saif wrote:
    It is time to introduce cyclist licensing. All cyclists over the age of 16 using public roads should be required to hold a licence. They would not need to pass a test to obtain one but the system would have to be self-financing, requiring applicants to pay a fee.
    Licensing would transform enforcement. Cyclists would be required to carry their licences with them at all times, providing proof of their identity.

    Won't the planned identity cards serve the same purpose?

    Jon
Sign In or Register to comment.