In my youth I was a dedicated cyclist and I always had, and used, a bicycle bell, as was then a legal requirement. The bell and its law seem to have fallen into abeyance.
This is a dangerous development now that cyclists share footways, sometimes legally, with pedestrians. For example, on many mornings my dog and I, neither at an agile age, are constrained to use the shared way beside the Brighton Road emerging from Lewes. Cyclists hurtle past us, silently and without warning, speeding down the hill. I usually have to jerk my dog aside; often I have to jump aside myself. Fewer than one in 20 has a bell.
Sooner or later a cyclist will not notice the nylon lead connecting me to my dog, and will cause a nasty accident. I implore any cyclist who sees this letter to get a bell and use it.
John Postgate, Lewes