Conservative Mayoral hopeful Councillor Charles Lucas is promising to do more to educate and encourage those who travel around the city by bike to use existing cycling infrastructure provided for them.

However, he is keen to point out that such a programme will not come at the expense of other road users but be met within existing budgets.

Many Councillors often receive complaints, and incidents of reckless or unlawful riding are regularly reported in the press, concerning cyclists endangering themselves and others through flouting of the Highway Code.

Although the police periodically conduct sweeps to clamp down on offenders, by issuing fines, court summonses and cautions, these exercises are few and far between.

In addition, the refusal of many cyclists to use allocated pavement or road space represents a continuing source of frustration given the investment the city is making in this form of transport.

In 2014, the Mayor launched a radical £35 million plan which aims to get a fifth of all commuters onto their bikes by 2020.

Now, Cllr Lucas wants greater emphasis put into cycle safety training which forms one of the four stated aims of the so-called Bristol Cycle Strategy.

Cllr Lucas said: “The tensions between the cycling fraternity, motorists and pedestrians show no sign of diminishing.

“With far fewer fines being issued in recent years to cyclists who break the law, it seems to me that a policy of persuading riders to use the existing provision would be timely.

“As Mayor, I would like to see a drive to improve cycle safety training and proficiency standards – which is already a component of the Council’s costly four-year cycling programme.

“In fact, as Chair of the Neighbourhood Committee within our local partnership, I have already been involved in granting funds to deliver new cycle contra-flows in my area.

“Although backing such schemes in principle, I made the point there that these could not be introduced at the expense of the motorist or without properly addressing road safety concerns.

“Whilst supportive of the ambition to encourage larger numbers to take up peddle power, this cannot – as at present – be achieved on the basis of judgements which have an obvious ideological (anti-car) bias.

“If Bristol is to stick to its commitment to build a cycling network, then the least the local taxpayer can expect in return for this investment is a reciprocal obligation on the part of cyclists that they will actually use it.”