I grew up in a town that used to be a village when I first moved there. It used to be a village, and then it got a supermarket, and then it got more housing estates, and then it got a large road bypassing the whole place, and by the time that was completed it had lost pretty much everything else. It's a town full of good people but empty of opportunities, and without opportunities good people can still go wrong. It's the sort of town where the better half of town have no idea how bad things are for the worser half, the sort of town that London's marketing agencies are paid to gloss over when they offer their depictions of reality, the sort of town that politicians either do not know or do not care exists, and the sort of town that, sadly, I don't believe is unique in modern Britain.

I always rode a bicycle, and I always loved that bicycle...it's only as cliché as it is true. I rode it near to my house, then I rode it away from my house, into the countryside, and once I had hit the countryside it was only ever my ambition to go further and further. I rode my bicycle to the disused quarry where I played with my brother, to my grandparent's house 10 miles away, to school, and to the restaurants in which I worked as a teenager. Eventually I was riding into neighboring counties, into rides of 40, 50, 60 and 100 miles, chasing after average speeds of 20 mph. Occasionally I went too far, a couple of times my mother had to drive out and collect me, exhausted, from roadsides some distance away. I always loved it, even then; I loved the independence, the adventure, the challenge. I've loved it since long before I thought about putting it into words.

This is not for charity. This will not grin for the adverts and grimace for the film crew, this will not be narrated by a monotone harbinger of doom. This will not be the slice of human spirit to be purchased by Lloyds TSB, Profit Hunters or Bright Orange Futures, in order that they can claim to have the human concerns their businesses work actively against. This will not claim to be Everyone; this will reject the claims that a Telephone Company creates Everyone, because I know drug addicts and asylum seekers and shit hole towns that no Telephone Company has ever cared about or cared to even mention the existence of. This will not be the media and marketing carnival that encourages everyone to smile. This will state that society is not just not right but that it is wholesale wrong. That it is wrong for inept bankers to take multi-million pound, taxpayer-paid pensions, whilst forty-year old taxpayers work fifty-hour weeks at minimum wage to save their mortgages. Wrong that Tesco can trumpet 10,000 new jobs without mention of the 2,000 small businesses and livelihoods they help close down each year... Wrong that halfwits and hooligans can join our police force with the misunderstanding that they are to be masters rather than servants of the public. Wrong that MP's can between them claim £93,000,000 in expenses, plus a £63,200 basic salary, for presiding over a society so destitute that 280,000 people choose to leave it for crack-cocaine or heroin addictions anyway.

This is against myths that the Next Adventure is to buy the New Mini, that sophistication is the phone you buy, and that charisma comes as a mist of scented oxides that you buy in an aluminum can and spray into your armpit. This is against a perverse media establishment teaching people to fear and dislike one another as part of business strategies that will sell more papers and buy more viewers... this is against a daily loss of humanity in return for the monthly donation to a faraway cause that buys back your soul....This is against the idea that something must contract matted hair and fleas and pleading eyes before it becomes deserving of concern.

Our society depends on our sense of community and our interactions as human beings. Where a society forgoes such experiences it is only undermining itself and its future. Why would anyone care about a society of businesses with their interiors shipped-in from Chinese warehouses, their management directed from Seattle and their profits exported to some tax-free island you've never heard of? The future of society is not worth trading for 87,000 Starbucks combinations, for self-checkout services and car parking, or for going large at just an extra 50 pence. Those who have died in the acquisition of our Liberty deserve better than such cheap sale of their victories.

What do I aim to achieve? It's always easier to attack something else than propose something of your own, especially in a world that can seem so fundamentally flawed. My suggestions then; our politicians must remember, or must be made to remember, whose interests they are charged to represent, and they must represent them with vigour and action rather than just lip-service. The corporations that prosper from our society must pay both respect and tax to the society that underpins their prosperity. The backbone of our society. The small shops, family businesses, restaurants, cafes and local pubs must be protected, for it is through these institutions that a society finds its character and its voice.

I suggest, finally, that society should cycle. I do not know if I can make a difference, I doubt that I alone can stop The Downfall, but I can at least retrieve the Bicycle from it. Too much ugliness is committed in this world from behind masks of cunning marketing or outright deceit. For me the Bicycle is a thing too beautiful to meet such a fate, and it is not for charity that I seek its rescue.