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12/07/2010 // INFO 2 Comments

Cycling in London

Future of cycling in the city

Cycling in London is one of life’s great pleasures. Of course, pedalling through the surrey hills or clambering up alpine passes is special, but cycling in the city is something special that adds joy to our lives on a daily basis.

Here are our top 5 reasons we love cycling in London:

1. The lie of the land – nature has dealt London a privileged hand when it comes to cycling. It is mostly flat, so cycling across town is no sweat.  It’s got a beautiful river running through the middle that you can cycle alongside or across, providing stunning views.  Finally London is an ideal size for cycling. Distances are large enough to justify getting on your bike but not too far. Paris is great for walking, London is ideal for cycling.

2. Temperate climes – London’s weather is mostly perfect for cycling. Not too warm and rarely too cold or wet. You don’t believe me? Well in all my years of commuting to work it has rarely rained in the morning and evening. And in any event, a decent jacket keeps out the London drizzle.

3. Flexibility – Anyone who has tried to commute on the District Line to the City will not be surprised that the average commute time in London is 55 minutes (although I am sure that Parsons Green to Moorgate averages over an hour!). Cycling gets you there much faster and more reliably. What other mode of transport allows you to get from meeting to meeting, from cafe to restaurant, from office to home with such freedom and control? By bike you know how long a journey is going to take before you leave. Traffic hardly effects you, tube engineers no longer control your life and barging in front of people to grab the solitary available taxi is a thing of the past.

4. Other cyclists – London cyclists are a friendly bunch. We talk to each other without having met before, we are courteous and polite, we don’t cut each other up and we (furtively) admire each others’ kit.

5. The things you see – it’s amazing what you can encounter when you are cycling through London. Today, on a ride from Victoria to Camden, I spotted giraffes through the bushes (London zoo), television broadcasting vans in Hyde Park (what were they doing there?), vast swathes of tourists on Oxford Street, lycra clad roadies looping round the outer circle and an A380 swooping into Heathrow. Much more interesting than going underground, don’t you think?

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2 comments [leave one]
Loving the Bike July 20, 2010 at 3:22 pm

All great reasons. I really need to get over and do some cycling in London one day.

Darryl

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Ann on the hill July 20, 2010 at 7:40 pm

London is flat is it? Try leaving the central bit.

No matter which direction I take it’s downhill, until the journey home. And that’s only 5 miles south of Victoria.

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