Portsmouth cyclist 'really shaken' after being subjected to abuse over shared pathway

A WOMAN who was shouted at while using a shared pathway for pedestrians and cyclists has called for better signage to be put in place.

Monday, 1st November 2021, 9:45 am

Keen rider Pat Huxtable, 67, was cycling along Duisburg Way, in Southsea, south of the rainbow zebra crossing when a man took offence to her presence.

The incident earlier this month left Pat ‘feeling really shaken’ and making further calls to Portsmouth City Council asking for improved signposting the path is for cyclists as well.

She said: ‘The ignorance and the anger by this one man who just kept on mouthing off, shouting and gesticulating, way above what I would have considered normal, was off the scale unacceptable.’

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Pat Huxtable (67) who suffered a verbal attack for using the cycle lane. Picture: Mike Cooter (080921)

Two small green rectangular signs urging people to share considerately have been put into pavement at either end.

But Pat said ‘hardly anyone notices’ them. ‘From the start I thought they wouldn't make any difference,’ she said.

She told The News: ‘All they need is to get someone down there to paint a flipping white line down the middle, then even the slowest of us might recognise that it is indeed a shared pathway.’

Portsmouth City Council has said it will monitor and review any incidents that are reported, transport cabinet member Councillor Lynne Stagg said.

Pat Huxtable (67) next to the tiny sign which shows that the pavement is to be shared by pedestrians and cyclists. Picture: Mike Cooter (080921)

There are markings on the ground and on lampposts.

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Pat said: ‘There are small circular signs on some of the trees, maybe three max, but because the trees’ foliage has grown, they’re mainly obscured.

‘It’s got to the stage now that there are days when I feel I’m not up to the challenge of being harangued and insulted along this route and take another, which I really shouldn’t have to do.

Pat Huxtable (67) underneath the small sign located far above the eyeline of pedestrians. Picture: Mike Cooter (080921)

‘We’re supposed to be pushing our cycle friendly status and this incident, and incidents such as this, are really off-putting.

‘I know people who won’t use this supposed shared path way and choose to use the road, which along Duisburg Way appears narrower and doesn’t feel cycle friendly – and even on the road they’ve got abuse.’

The council said no complaints had been received in the decade the pathway has been shared.

Cllr Stagg said: ‘We haven't received any previous concerns raised about this shared path, but we'll monitor this situation and if problems continue to arise, we'll review whether any additional signage is required.’

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