I have broken the law. There. I said it. You probably have too, and your mum, maybe even your nan. That’s because there are loads of little-known cycling rules and regulations in the UK that mean anyone who’s ridden a bike before has probably, at some point, committed a criminal offence.
The Highway Code is a combination of both advisory and mandatory rules, described as either "should-do’s/not do’s" or "must-do’s/not do’s". Whilst you should wear a helmet, should keep two hands on the handlebars except when signalling or changing gear, and should avoid carrying anything which will affect your balance or may get tangled up with your wheels or chain, you cannot be penalised for failure to comply. (Though it is worth mentioning that breaking these rules can be used against you in court as evidence of, say, cycling recklessly, which is an offence). "Must-do’s", on the other hand, are compulsory by law and by breaking them you could land yourself a hefty fine, or even a prison sentence.
Here are some of the more unusual ways that you can break the law on a bike…
These lads look like they know how to have a good time, let’s just hope they save the drinking for after the cycling
Former London mayor and lawbreaker Boris Johnson
Second from the right has just spotted the police up front - but don’t worry, my friend, penny farthings are A-OK under UK law
You don’t want to see Alberto Contador when he’s furious