Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Morning Commute - the changes

I have been commuting to and from work on a regular basis for getting on five years and in that time I have noticed quite a few changes.

Five years isn't long I hear many of you cry. That is true but before then I was only a once a week commuter and fair weather at that. It wasn't even on a Brompton but an ageing mountain bike. When I started to cycle to work regularly, I didn't really see too many other cyclists in the part of London work in. How that has changed!

I more or less set off for work at the same time every morning (going home is quite varied) and other cyclists must do the same as I pass certain familiar faces and bicycles at the same points on my commute. Some I know by name and say hello to and when at lights we have a brief chat, which is much longer on a Friday as we usually tell each other our cycling plans for the weekend. Some cyclists I merely nod to and they nod back. There are three other regular Brompton riders on my commute and more oft than not we ding bells at each other.

The biggest change I have noticed is that I am no longer alone. There are many more cyclists out there and in all weathers. On my commute this morning alone I saw the following bicycles:

  • Road bike x 9
  • Mountain bike x 11
  • Mountain bike with those massive tyres x 1
  • Hybrid x 5
  • Fixie x 2
  • BMX x 3
  • Brompton x 2
  • Electric hybrid x 1
  • Strida x 1

In addition to this I pass a tube station and the bike rack with bicycles locked up was packed. There are definitely more cyclists appearing every week. This is certainly true when transport strikes are on. My theory is that some people have a go at commuting on their bicycles, like it and never go back.

Whatever it is I am pleased that more and more people are taking to a cleaner and more healthy form of transport. I only wish that the cycling infrastructure would keep pace and make cycling in London and other cities in the UK that bit better.

What do you think. Have you noticed an increase in cyclists where you live. Leave a comment and let us know.

2 comments:

  1. Definitely, I work in Hull and over the last five years the number of cyclists has increased ten fold. I come in by train and Brompton, five years ago a bike or two appeared some days, now the bike-rack is full nearly every day. if I didn't have my B I'd standing in a doorway for the entire journey instead of B in a luggage rack and me on a seat!

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  2. I got my first tricycle at the age of 2 in 1962 and have enjoyed cycling ever since. During the 1980's and '90s I rarely saw anyone on a bike up here in Northampton, but its rare now to go outside and not see cyclists, whether on the commute or pootling about evenings and weekends. A bicycle is a very satisfying purchase as the sum of its parts gives its user so much more back than a collection of steel tubes, nuts and bolts might outwardly appear to promise.

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