A DECISION to lift cycling restrictions in Bournemouth could break down the ‘us-and- them’ attitude residents have towards cyclists, a councillor has claimed.

Labour councillor Dennis Gritt said he fully supports the move to allow cycling in The Square and at Pier Approach for a trial period and questioned why the town had such an “anti-cycling attitude.”

However, the controversial move has been branded “madness” by another councillor and has sparked fears of an increase in accidents involving cyclists and pedestrians.

Cllr Gritt, who represents Kinson North, said: “It’s a brave decision and it’s an attempt to get away from this us-and-them attitude towards cyclists which strangely seems to ferment in this town.

“It’s an anti-cycling attitude which seems to have always been around and I cannot understand it. I remember the first cycle route I campaigned on was in Glenferness Avenue and people said then we couldn’t have that there.

“I also supported cycling on the promenade which I think is an unqualified success.

“We’ve got to support this trial and remind cyclists to be aware of pedestrians and of the speed limits and then I am sure it will be a success too.”

However independent Cllr Ron Whittaker, who rep-resents Throop and Muscliff, said: “One only has to look at the speed of some cyclists when they come down Richmond Hill and hit The Square to see that this will cause a problem.

“The Square is extremely busy with children and elderly folk often enjoying music and other entertainment during the summer, as is the Pier Approach. These cyclists can dismount for the few extra minutes it will take them.”