Re: 100M£ @ Terry Barnes
There are a number of problems with this theory. "behind" is where all the pollution comes from, which is not very nice. And "in the middle" is one of the least safe places to be, because you can get crushed between two vehicles when they come to a stop. And, finally, unless you block the lane, in the middle, you can still get killed at the left hand turn, because everybody will try and overtake you before you get there when the traffic moves off.
So, the safest place to be on a bike is at the front. You have no one in front of you, so you can get rear ended, but only by drivers going over the red light *and* you cannot get crushed. You can get around the left hand corner before the cars (since bikes accelerate faster than most cars and all lorries). And you get cleaner air.
The problem, of course, is that you have to get to the front, which means going up the left or the right. So, it's always a gamble -- shall I pass this bus on the left where I will be much less safe, so I can get to the front where I will be much safer. It's a problem.
Still, I agree the alternative, that we are pretentious twats and a road hazard, rather than mothers, fathers and children trying to stay alive, is equally likely.