Highway Code Rule 145:
"You MUST NOT drive on or over a pavement, footpath or bridleway except to gain lawful access to property, or in the case of an emergency."
This basic simple rule is based on the Law as set out in the Highway Act 1853 Section LXXII (Penalty on Persons committing Nuisances by riding on Footpaths, &c.):
"And be it further enacted, That if any Person shall wilfully ride upon any Footpath or Causeway by the Side of any Road made or set apart for the Use or Accommodation of Foot Passengers ; or shall wilfully lead or drive any Horse, Ass, Sheep, Mule, Swine, or Cattle, or Carriage of any Description, or any Truck or Sledge upon any such Footpath or Causeway ; or shall tether any Horse, Ass, Mule, Swine, or Cattle on any Highway, so as to suffer or permit the tethered Animal to be thereon ; or shall cause any Injury or Damage to be done to the said Highway, or the Hedges, Posts, Rails, Walls, or Fences thereof , or shall wilfully obstruct the Passage of any Footway; or wilfully destroy or injure the Surface of any Highway; or shall wilfully or wantonly pull up, cut down, remove, or damage the Posts, Blocks, or Stones fixed by the said Surveyor as herein directed; or dig or cut down the Banks which are the Securities and Defence of the said Highways ; or break, damage, or throw down the Stones, Bricks, or Wood fixed upon the Parapets or Battlements of Bridges, or otherwise injure or deface the same ; or pull down, destroy, obliterate, or deface any Milestone or Post, Graduated or Direction Post or Stone, erected upon any Highway; or shall play at Football or any other Game on any Part of the said Highways, to the Annoyance of any Passenger or Passengers ; or if any Hawker, Higgler, Gipsy, or other Person travelling shall pitch any Tent, Booth, Stall, or Stand, or encamp, upon any Part of any Highway; or if any Person shall make or assist in making any Fire, or shall wantonly fire off any Gun or Pistol, or shall set fire to or wantonly let off or throw any Squib, Rocket, Serpent, or other Firework whatsoever, within Fifty Feet of the Centre of such Carriageway or Cartway; or bait, or run for the Purpose of baiting, any Bull upon or near any Highway ; or shall lay any Timber, Stone, Hay, Straw, Dung, Manure, Lime, Soil, Ashes, Rubbish, or other Matter or Thing whatsoever upon such Highway, to the Injury of such Highway, or to the Injury, Interruption, or personal Danger of any Person travelling thereon ; or shall suffer any Filth, Dirt, Lime, or other offensive Matter or Thing whatsoever to run or flow into or upon any Highway from any House, Building, Erection, Lands, or Premises adjacent thereto; or shall in any Way wilfully obstruct the free Passage of any such Highway; every Person so offending in any of the Cases aforesaid shall for each and every such Offence forfeit and pay any Sum not exceeding Forty Shillings, over and above the Damages occasioned thereby."
It's not a difficult concept (cycle on the road or on a designated cycle-way) and the aim of the law is simple (to preserve the safety of pedestrians).
So why would the Boys in Blue prevent Government Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell from legally using a road, and instruct him to use a path that passes through a pedestrian gate?
I reckon that the Police were just too lazy to open the main gates for him.
Let's not forget that we're supposed to be a nation inspired by recent Olympic performances, and our Velodrome Heroes have urged more folk to get out on their bikes.
In this case, the Police deserve to be called morons.