City 'should copy London on rickshaws'

THE city council should adapt a rickshaw scheme used in London for Glasgow, it was claimed today.

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Rickshaw campaigners have called on Glasgow to adopt the same system as London
Rickshaw campaigners have called on Glasgow to adopt the same system as London

Greens councillor Nina Baker has also urged rickshaw operators to group together and form a national association.

The pleas came as a legal fight continued in a bid to overturn the council's decision to refuse to grant street trader licences for rickshaw taxi drivers.

The Evening Times has previously told how a group of rickshaw peddlers are taking legal action after local authority bosses decided to halt the transport in the city in late 2010.

The transport is popular in most large cities across the world, including London, New York and Edinburgh.

Anderston/City councillor Ms Baker has been discussing the issue with local rickshaw groups as well as the London Pedicabs Operators Association.

She is trying to arrange a meeting with licensing and the roads department next week to try and clarify some of the issues.

She said: "One of the pedicab operators in Glasgow came to me more than two years ago to talk about the difficulties they were facing. Since then I've been gathering information so this issue can hopefully be resolved.

"There is no national standard as far as I can tell, so against what standard does the council wish the pedicabs to be inspected?

"Neither London or New York require an inspection against a particular structural standard for their licence holders."

The councillor said rickshaw groups across the country should pull together.

Cyclist and former rickshaw operator Norman Armstrong, 56, welcomed the move to introduce a Scottish association.

He said: "It is a good idea and we have talked about it in the past.

He added: "We have been in talks with the London pedicabs association and they have come up with a process for rickshaw operators in London which we would be happy to emulate. We run a coherent and environmentally sustainable form of transport in Glasgow and we cannot understand why the council will not welcome it."

A spokesman from Glasgow City Council said they had a policy in place for licencing pedicabs which ensured they were safe.

He added: "If we are going to license a vehicle, it needs to be safe - passenger and driver safety is paramount.

"We are waiting for the trade to get a vehicle tested or demonstrate that they can meet safety standards."

Local government

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