Wednesday, 15 February 2012

A bevy of Bromptons

It has been a while since I stepped into any bike shop, but I was on the hunt for some knee warmers for when I go running. I went to Runners Need in Holborn which is above Cycle Surgery and they said they only have knee supports for runners and but you can get leg warmers for cyclists.

No luck with the knee warmers, they had some fancy leg warmers, (cheaper to get a pair of tights) but I had a look the prices of Bromptons. They have increased a lot since I first got mine. If I want to upgrade next year I will have trade in my current one to help with the cost.

Thursday, 9 February 2012

The Snow is back

I have just finished a bowl of homemade soup after a very cold and snowy journey back home on the Brompton after my etching print class in Shoreditch. As we packed away we heard that it had started to snow and it was a cold and icy journey back to London Bridge to catch the train. Luckily the trains were still running and the heating was on. Despite the cold and snow there were other night cyclists around.

The snow didn’t settle so I was able to pedal fast to keep warm and I wrapped my scarf around my mouth and cheeks.

At this rate I will have to invest in ski goggles.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Fourth Birthday

Today marks four years since I have had my Brompton. I have just had a quick read of the blog posts of those first days when I struggled with gears, took forever to get anywhere and was scared of the traffic. But I kept going because I really loved my Brompton and cycling.

Still love my bike.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Sun and Snow

I have been cycling around London the last few weeks in a permanent state of cold and the reason why they are no photos for January is that I was too cold to take off my gloves.

The shadow photo was taken on the 1 February and marks the Brompton’s first mini trip outside London to Bexleyheath in Kent. It was sunny enough for sunglasses but the temperature was freezing. I took the Brompton on the train to Bexleyheath Station and just pedalled the rest of the way to my appointment.

It snowed on Saturday night which was a lovely sight on Sunday morning. Even better the temperature rose and by yesterday when I got on the Brompton to cycle to Woolwich the roads were clear. The snow has almost gone but the icy wind has returned.

Saturday, 4 February 2012

The Times launches a national cycle campaign

The Times newspaper has launched a national campaign to improve safety for cyclists across the country under the slogan ‘Cities fit for cycling’. It is the first time I can recall that this issue has made the front page of a national newspaper. This campaign has come from the reaction to the injury of Mary Bowers a journalist at The Times who was knocked from her bike by a lorry last November. She remains unconscious in hospital.

The launch of the campaign on Thursday was hard hitting with statistics around increases in deaths to cyclists. Yesterday the campaign was back with details of the manifesto for safer cycling.

When I returned to cycling with the Brompton four years ago, in London there was a sense that more was getting done to improve safety with new paths, a commitment to training and the plan to introduce hire bikes. Sadly only the cycle hire is going strong.

There has to be a combination of a change of attitude towards sharing the road of all users, safety measures for large vehicles, accessible training and cycles paths that actually assist cyclists. None of these concerns are new. I would also like to see a series of television adverts about the safety aspects of cycling for drivers and cyclists.

I support the idea of a national campaign but there are going to be regional concerns that have to be addressed. The London Cycling Campaign continues to work hard on the very issues outlined in the Times.

It will be interesting to see how this campaign plays out in an Olympic year given the expectation that Britain will be gaining medals in Cycling.