The Highway Code
The Highway Code is currently being revised and these revisions have been published for formal consultation. The proposed ammendments have quite an impact on us as cyclists and as such we need to be aware of the changes when they are formally adopted. A statutory instrument has been laid before Parliament that means the updated Highway Code will come into effect on 29th January 2022, but there's no official plan to communicate the changes until they actually come into force.
Below is an outline of what are thought to be the most significant revisions:
New Hierarchy of Road Users (left) Drivers of vehicles that can cause the greatest harm in the event of a collision bear the greatest responsibility to take care and reduce the danger to others. This principle applies most strongly to drivers of HGVs, LGVs, cars/taxis and motorcycles. Cyclists and horse riders likewise have a responsibility to reduce danger to pedestrians.
New priority for pedestrians at junctions At a junction, drivers, motorcyclists, horse riders and cyclists should give way to pedestrians crossing or waiting to cross a road into which or from which you are turning. You should give way to pedestrians waiting to cross a zebra crossing (currently you only have to give way if they're already on the crossing), and to pedestrians and cyclists waiting to cross a parallel crossing.
New priority for cyclists when cars are turning You should not cut across cyclists, horse riders or horse drawn vehicles going ahead when you are turning into or out of a junction or changing direction or lane. This applies whether they are using a cycle lane, a cycle track, or riding ahead on the road and you should give way to them. Do not turn at a junction if to do so would cause the cyclist, horse rider or horse drawn vehicle going straight ahead to stop or swerve.