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7:50am Thursday 14th June 2012 in Letters
Sir – Nigel Clarke asks for a “road tax” on cycling (Letters, June 7). One presumes he thinks he pays one for his car? One also wonders if he still pays window tax, as that too, has been abolished for quite some time.
What motorists actually pay is Vehicle Excise Duty, this is important to understand — it isn’t, and has never been a hypothecated tax towards the road. It is a green levy on emissions — a fact of the matter is that many motor vehicles are exempt (pre-1974, electric cars and motorcycles, even disabled drivers).
People like Mr Clarke must now surely accept that they’re in a minority, and must educate themselves on what they pay and why. There is nothing to be gained from this strange jealous attitude, and all it does is add to conflict on and off the road between different vehicle users.
We must regard and respect cycling for its many benefits: the fact its users need less NHS care over the years, less wear on the road surface, no emissions and very little risk statistically posed to others (countries with high cycle usage have incredible safety records).
In fact, market research by Fiat found that 83 per cent of cyclists surveyed owned a car and had a full driving licence. British Cycling found similar at 88 per cent.
DJ Cook, Sholing, Southampton