POLICE have hailed the success of a crackdown on pavement cyclists three weeks after special patrols hit the streets.

Since the November 17 launch, officers have caught almost two offenders each day.

They have issued 21 on-the-spot fines of £30 to the more serious perpetrators and warned 19 others.

Police chiefs launched the operation after traders, shoppers and residents complained of nuisance bikers blighting the town centre, particularly on The Rock and Kay Gardens.

Inspector Charlotte Cadden of the Bury East Neighbourhood Police Team, said: “Incidents of cyclists using pavements and pedestrianised areas to cycle around the town is a genuine concern and is regularly raised by residents at community meetings.

“Many people, particularly older people, can feel very intimidated by cyclists using footpaths and, of course, there is a real risk that someone could be hurt.”

A Greater Manchester Police spokesman added: “Officers have so far had a lot of positive feedback from shopkeepers.”

Julia Mcloughlin, manager of Help The Aged, in The Rock, said: “People cycling on the pavements has been a problem in recent years because sometimes they don't realise how fast they are going and it is unsettling for elderly people.

“I have noticed fewer cyclists in pedestrianised areas since the start of this scheme and I welcome it strongly.”