The Dutch are streets ahead

Thanks to Andrew Robertson

There is many a thing that springs to mind when I think of the Netherlands. Windmills, cheese, liberal cannabis policy, open prostitution, the colour orange, flatness and cycling.

Yes indeed, there is many a reason to admire these neighbours of ours, including the fact that the majority of the population live on land reclaimed from the sea. Any people capable of living where the sea ought to be gets my respect. But there is something else these ingenious folk have created that has me gushing in admiration, and that is the fact they have created a cycling nation.

So why are the Dutch such keen cyclists, so much more so than us English, or for that matter, anyone else in Europe? Why don’t they take a car like everyone else does? What has taken place there to create a bicycle paradise, a nation which has more bikes than people?

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