TV presenter Noel Edmonds has struck a savage blow for the common man by illegally driving along Bristol’s bus lanes in his unlicensed London taxi: a move that has been praised by commuters and environmental pressure groups alike.
Edmonds has been using the black cab – in which he always travels alone – to drive from his home to the Endemol television studios, where his hit random number-guessing gameshow Deal Or No Deal is filmed.
John Cottersham, who drives along the same route as Edmonds every day while taking his disabled son Peter to school, described the scene during the TV legend’s last bus lane journey.
“It was absolute gridlock – all I could see were cars, cars, cars, stretching into the distance,” Mr. Cottersham told us. “Then, suddenly, I became aware of a black cab pulling out of the queue behind us. As it passed us, I realised Noel Edmonds was at the wheel.
Then he drove on, up the bus lane and into the distance, and as he passed all the stationery vehicles, the commuters cheered and waved. I think some even had little flags, saying stuff like ‘Go Noel!’ on them,” Mr. Cottersham added, wiping a single tear from his cheek, “it was just a magical moment.”
Friends of the Earth are among the many environmental pressure groups that have recently voiced public support for Edmonds.
“There are an estimated 170,000 private cars on the road in Bristol, so we get a lot of traffic problems,” said local activist Susan Haslem. “By taking his car off the main highway and onto bus lanes, Mr. Edmonds is effectively reducing congestion on these roads by as much as one seventeen-hundreth of a percent, while causing only minimum disruption to the thousands of people who travel by bus each day. That’s one in the eye for all those doubters who say one man can’t make a difference.”
When asked to comment on Edmonds’ conduct earlier today, Bristol City Council transport chief Jon Rogers appeared to visibly well up, before beginning slowly to clap. The applause was taken up by members of his department until it became a deafening standing ovation.
“God bless Noel Edmonds,” Mr. Rogers mumbled finally, tears streaming down his face, “God bless him.”