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Cyclists could face speed limits and may need number plates, reports say | UK News

Cyclists could face 20mph speed limits and may need number plates, after Transport Secretary Grant Shapps flagged a shake-up in road laws.

Less than a fortnight after vowing to create a “death by dangerous cycling” law that will treat killer cyclists the same as motorists, Mr Shapps said he wanted to stop certain behaviour on the roads.

He told the Daily Mail: “Somewhere where cyclists are actually not breaking the law is when they speed, and that cannot be right, so I absolutely propose extending speed limit restrictions to cyclists.

“Particularly where you’ve got 20mph limits on increasing numbers of roads, cyclists can easily exceed those, so I want to make speed limits apply to cyclists.

“That obviously does then lead you into the question of: ‘Well, how are you going to recognise the cyclist? Do you need registration plates and insurance? And that sort of thing,” he told the paper.

Mr Shapps said he is proposing that there should be a review on how to track cyclists who break the law.

The Highway Code and Road Traffic Act speeding limits only apply to motor vehicles and their drivers. While local authorities can impose speed limits on cyclists, it has been rarely done.

The Department for Transport refused to provide comment to the PA news agency on Mr Shapps’ interview.

Department officials did acknowledge to the Mail the flagged measures would require cyclists to have number plates or other identification markings for enforcement purposes.

Mr Shapps told the Mail that while he doesn’t want to stop people from getting on their bike, we should not “turn a blind eye” to cyclists who break road laws, speed and “bust red lights” and “get away with it”.

It comes after Mr Shapps pledged to create a “death by dangerous cycling” law to “impress on cyclists the real harm they can cause when speed is combined with lack of care”.

The move will close a legal loophole which means that cyclists who kill pedestrians can only be jailed for two years.

Under Mr Shapps’ proposal, the new law would be added to the Transport Bill due to be put before Parliament in the autumn.

Record number of jobs being advertised – with actors and dancers in high demand | UK News

A record number of jobs are being advertised, with big increases for actors, entertainers, driving instructors and dancers, according to recruiters.

Vacancies for water and waste roles such as sewerage plant operatives have also increased, which recruiters said could be related to the prolonged dry weather and fears of droughts.

There were 1.85 million job adverts in the last week of July, with up to 200,000 being added every week in the past month, according to the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

Three out of the UK’s top 10 hiring hotspots were in London in the last week of July.

Kate Shoesmith, deputy chief executive of the REC, said: “This new data shows the continued strength of the jobs market, despite any wider economic uncertainty.

“The number of job adverts being posted each week is stable. It’s a great time to be looking for work as a jobseeker, as employers are having to think more about the pay, benefits, conditions and development opportunities they offer both new starters and current staff as they compete for talent.

“There is a danger that with costs soaring, employers will have to reprioritise – as there is still no viable support package for businesses to meet these rising costs.

“We know that employers’ confidence in the broader economy has started to drop. Government must play its role, both in supporting people and businesses through the current crisis, and also by working with industry to create a sustainable labour market.

“We need a long-term workforce strategy that encompasses skills, immigration and makes childcare and local transport part of the infrastructure of our labour market.”

Vacancies for probation officers, health and social care workers fell in recent weeks, according to the report.

Tory leadership race: Rishi Sunak wins over audience in Sky News’ Battle for Number 10 programme | Politics News

Rishi Sunak was deemed to have won Sky News’ Battle for Number 10 after the majority of audience members voted for him over rival Liz Truss.

Ms Truss and Mr Sunak faced tough challenges from Conservative members who are mostly undecided, followed by questions from Sky News’ Kay Burley.

After the pair put forward their arguments for why they should replace Boris Johnson as leader of the Tory party, and therefore prime minister, the audience members were asked who they thought had won the argument.

The audience, made up of Conservative Party members, convincingly backed Mr Sunak in a show of hands, rather than Ms Truss – who has been winning polls since the battle was whittled down to two.

Live updates: Truss says recession ‘not inevitable’; Sunak told he ‘knifed’ Johnson

Read more: Truss refuses request to apologise over public sector pay policy U-turn

Ms Truss put herself forward as the candidate of integrity, repeatedly saying she will always listen to people and will do something different if a policy is not working.

She said a recession is “not inevitable”, hours after interest rates were hiked, and promised “bold” action compared with Mr Sunak’s caution.

However, former chancellor Mr Sunak said Ms Truss’ vision “will make the situation worse” as he reminded audience members of his financial actions to help people during the COVID pandemic.

He stressed a need to get a grip on runaway inflation before cutting taxes, adding: “But it all starts with not making the situation worse.

“Because if we just put fuel on the fire of this inflation spiral, all of us, all of you, are just going to end up with higher mortgage rates, savings and pensions that are eaten away, and misery for millions.”