A programme of group discussions and depth interviews held in four towns has revealed the attitudes of people to cycling. 88 people took part, half currently used a bicycle at least once a week and half were in their teens or early twenties. The strongest attitude found among respondents was that cycling is a childhood activity. Though the great majority had enjoyed cycling in their earlier years, they felt that they had to give it up because of social pressures from their peers. Giving up cycling was seen as part of growing up, even if it meant having to walk. Older respondents gave a range of reasons for not cycling such as discomfort, carrying children or shopping, lack of social acceptability or danger from other traffic but many simply never considered using a bicycle for any of their journeys. Those respondents who do cycle were less likely to talk about danger from other traffic but mentioned benefits such as low cost, physical exercise, freedom from traffic congestion and not having to wait for buses. Some felt pride in travelling under their own steam and not endangering other people. (A)

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