Cyclists to be allowed on motorway hard shoulders

A new ruling will allow cyclists and horse riders to use the hard shoulders of Britain's motorways

1st April 2017
Hard shoulder

Cyclists and horse riders will be permitted to use the hard shoulders of Britain’s motorways from this summer onwards. The Highways Agency told BBC Countryfile Magazine that “we have hundreds of miles of virtually unused road surfaces in the UK and this is the ideal opportunity to allow less polluting traffic to make use of the premier road network.”

Cycling organisations welcomed the change – a spokesperson from campaigning charity Roads for Bikes said “this will be like HS2 for the two-wheeled community. Now we can really go places.”

However, some motoring organisations have expressed concern: “cyclists and horse riders don’t pay road tax and so shouldn’t be allowed on motorways, even if it is the hard shoulder,” said Ann Greeviews of CAR. “This could also be dangerous.” The Highways Agency is considering a barrier between the hard shoulder and the inside lane to prevent collisions.

The new ruling is expected to come into effect on the 31 June 2017.

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