What you can do for cycling in Ireland as RTE TV series starts

Posted on: February 18th, 2019

RTE One Now You See Me cycling

The new RTE One TV series ‘Now You See Me’ is set of focus on cycling. And it’s a great chance for cyclists to make their voices heard about a range of cycling-related issues.


Tonight – Monday, February 18th – RTE One airs the first in a four-part series, Now You See Me, featuring the issues that impact on cyclists in Ireland.

This evening the show spends time with a family in Donegal who have taken to cycling in a big way. And one of the presenters, Bláthnaid Treacy, also goes to Copenhagen.

The Danish city is regarded as a world leader in providing for cyclists, with a huge number of people commuting by bike as a result.

We’ll have to wait to see what conclusions the series comes to and how balanced it is. But one thing is certain; it’s likely to cause a lot of debate on social media.

And this is where cyclists can play a part, especially on Twitter where much of the debate is likely to take place.

The hashtags #NowYouSeeMe and #NYSM have been used on some of the tweets related to the series, see below.

And the Twitter handles of the presenters – @BlathnaidT and @SimonDelaneyEsq – are also included in many of the Tweets, as well as RTE One’s Twitter handle, @rteone.

However, it looks like #NowYouSeeMe or #NYSM will be the main one to look for and the main one to use. So get online and have your say during and after the shows.

Point out the challenges facing cyclists in your part of the country. But also let people know the kind of facilities in your local area that are working well, if any.

Much of the conversation around cycling can be negative, so highlighting the positive things that are happening as well as the negative will be important.

One interesting aspect of tonight’s broadcast looks set to be the comparison with Copenhagen.

There should be plenty of material – things the Danes are doing right for cyclists – that could be replicated in Ireland if the political will was there.

So it may be good to point those out and tag Twitter accounts like the Road Safety Authority, Shane Ross and your local authority.

A key thing will be to create plenty of conversation and at a very basic level show RTE that this kind of programming is valuable and provokes real debate. So be sure to have your say!

“The people in Copenhagen have nailed it; they are incredible,” Treacy said of her cycling trip to the city.

“In the episode, I get to catch up with Irish people living there and see what it’s like cycling over there.

“The thing is, when I asked them if they would cycle at home, all of them said no, because it’s too dangerous for them.

“If you are used to cycling on segregated tracks, in an environment that is set up for cyclists with proper rules, and you come to Ireland, where it’s almost a free-for-all on the roads, it is terrifying.

“It is a similar size and layout to Dublin; it has a Temple Bar vibe in the middle and there are lots of suburbs all around it,” she added of Copenhagen.

“They managed to make it work, and, because of that, are almost a template for us. If they can do it, why can’t we?”

“I am a nervous cyclist here in Ireland. I prefer to cycle at a more leisurely pace, and so the city is a good place for me and my bike. If I had to cycle out to work in Donnybrook, I would be terrified.”