"Boris Bikes (3)." Cycling Tip by planxty
Cycling, London: 27 reviews and 60 photos
I hope you have come to this page via my Boris Bikes (1) and (2) pages where I promised that, in the interest of fair reporting, I would write an update to these pages. Here it is. For those coming straight to this page, here is a btief outline. The so -called Boris Bikes, named for the cycling Mayor of London, Boris Johnson. It is basically a system of public use bicycles that you can hire either by the day, month or year. You go to a docking station, access a bike, go to your destination and dock it in again. It is intended for short journeys and the charges escalate dramatically for longer use.
I had, to say the least, a fairly torrid time accessing the system, although I have now eventually managed it. The system is basically a good one but still fundamentally flawed. The two photos accompanying this tip demonstrate some of the problems. The night photo (apologies for the quality) is a docking station in the City of London at just before eight at night. Not a single bicycle for hire. I had to walk a considerable distance to get one at another station. Not good. Coming to the end of my journey, you can see the situation at the other end where I wanted to dock the bike. Almost full. Luckily, there was one space left but anyone coming five minutes after me would have had to go elsewhere. It appears that bikes tend to be cycled into the City in the morning, and cycled out in the evening.
The other problem is obviously the traffic. there are some designated cycleways but often you are riding in bus lanes. the problem with this is the buses (obviously) and licensed taxi cabs who are also allowed to use them. They seem to have little consideration for cyclists, and I have been "cut up" several times. Diesel fumes are also a problem. On balance, though, I am quite enjoying my cycling, and I was surprised at how quickly I can get around, even as unfit as I am!
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