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Cycling Brighton mum's anger at bus-t up
A cyclist claims she was subjected to a stream of abuse from a bus driver for carrying her young daughter on the back of her bike.
Rebecca Barkaway was making her way along Lewes Road, Brighton, with her two-year-old Florence when she was shouted at as she cycled around a number 48 bus to Bevendean that had stopped to pick up passengers.
The 33-year-old said: “The bus driver opened his window and shouted at me that I should never be on the road with a child on the bike.
“At the next set of traffic lights I stopped and banged on his doors and said, ‘What are you |talking about? It’s totally inappropriate for you to shout at me’.
“He said there are a lot of drivers around who don’t pay enough attention, talk on their mobile phones and things.
“But I am very careful – obviously, because I had my child on the back.”
She has only been cycling with Florence, who was wearing a helmet, for about six weeks and is building up her confidence cycling along the A270.
She said: “Lewes Road is intimidating because of the sheer volume of traffic, people parking in the cycle lanes and just not being aware and considerate of cyclists.”
The mother and daughter had been swimming and were on their way home when the incident happened on Tuesday lunchtime (October 23).
Mrs Barkaway, who lives off Coombe Road, said: “I was very angry. I do feel anxious about taking my small child on the road, but as with everything with parenting, you do it with the information you have and as carefully as you can.”
She has lodged a complaint with Brighton and Hove Bus and Coach Company.
Mrs Barkaway said: “There is tension between bus drivers and cyclists. I want to feel safe and that bus drivers are going to act appropriately.
“I have had bus drivers pull out in front of me before, but I have never been told off.
“This has not put me off, it makes me more determined.”
Roger French, the managing director of Brighton and Hove Buses, said the allegations would be looked into.
He said: “This is something we take very seriously. It is not for our drivers to make such a comment.
“I have never heard of a driver speaking to a cyclist like this before and we will ensure this is investigated.”
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