CYCLISTS say they would strongly oppose any move to make helmets compulsory after comments by transport minister Jesse Norman.

Speaking at a walking and cycling safety conference this week Norman did not rule out a forthcoming Government review making the use of helmets and high-visibility jackets compulsory.

But cycling groups fear the policy would cut the number taking to the road and point to research showing vehicles pass closer to bicycles when the user is wearing a helmet.

Norman said compulsory helmets would be looked at under the Cycle Safety Review set up after the case of Charlie Alliston, 20, jailed for 18 months after he killed pedestrian Kim Briggs as he cycled in London on a bike with no front brakes.

Boardman, whose cyclist mother Carol was killed in crash with a pickup truck in July last year, said: “The Cycle Safety Review will be based on evidence, and evidence shows that helmets do not make a significant difference to people’s safety.

More than 100 cyclists in total were killed on Britain’s roads in 2016, up two per cent on the previous year.

Sam Jones of Cycling UK said:”Making helmet-wearing compulsory ... could undermine levels of cycle use.”