Cyclists attempting to reach Heathrow over the past four weeks have discovered a small local difficulty: the pedestrian and bicycle tunnel has been closed in order to convert it into a sixth lane for motor vehicles.

Contributor Simon Calder discovered that cyclists now have to depend upon a bicycle shuttle bus: a single-decker from which the seats have been removed. Heathrow Airport describes the service as 'a safe and comfortable means of access'. Simon Calder says: 'Presumably no one from the company has tried to hang on to a bike while one of the airport's more ambitious bus drivers introduces riders to hitherto unknown G-forces. Despite the odd surges of speed, traffic delays mean the journey to the perimeter now takes 10 minutes, five times longer than by bike.'

He wonders if the airport could be trying to make cyclists' lives so uncomfortable that they switch to cars and so increase profits from parking fees. Heathrow Airport obsessed with making money? Perish the thought.

Since the IRA has been using cars as mortar launching pads at the airport, surely it would help security if more people were encouraged to reach the airport by bike.