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The Bicycle Backlash Unfolds

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The Bicycle Backlash Unfolds

Postby Garry on Tue May 06, 2008 12:36 pm

There's an excellent article here on the BBC:

As cycling becomes more and more popular in London thanks to the new generation of folding bicycles, they are causing more trouble on our already overcrowded trains. Sadly this is leading to resentment of cyclists by many commuters, but in fact it's the train companies who should take responsibility and make their trains more bike friendly!

What are your experiences of travelling with a bicycle by train in London or elsewhere? I'm especially interested to hear about the situation in other countries, such as Asian cities where the folding bikes are massively more popular than in UK.

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Postby Timbo in Essex on Tue May 06, 2008 7:53 pm

I have carried my A-bike between Southend Victoria and Liverpool St for over 18 months and have never had any problem. The A-bike is small enough to fit between the seat backs, well out of the way of anybody standing up. Due to a change in jobs, I now travel from Southend Central to Fenchurch St and although there is no space between the seat backs on these trains, there is a small luggage area at the end of every other coach and the A-bike fits neatly in there. Again, I have never had any problem with other commuters
I suspect this is a non-story, invented by a journalist who simply doesn't like bikes although I accept some cyclists are their own worst enemy and can behave in an arrogant fashion.
I would be interested to hear if any A-biker has experienced harrassment from other train users, although I suspect because the A-bike is so small, it tends to generate amusement rather than resentment.

Shall we meet up again in London this Summer?

Best wishes to you all.
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Postby newcross on Wed May 07, 2008 8:55 am

Timbo in Essex wrote:Shall we meet up again in London this Summer?

Yes, definitely. I will start planing soon. Hope this time is slightly more organised. :D
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Chicago Metra trains

Postby Sherlock Holmes on Fri May 09, 2008 1:29 am

My experience has been pretty similar to Timbo's. I take my A-bike on the Chicago commuter train nearly everyday, and so far I have not had any problems. It is a bit awkward carrying the bike through some of the narrow staircases, and putting it in the luggage rack, but overall it goes quite smoothly. Mostly all I receive are mystified stares, pointed fingers, and the occasional question, "What is that?!?"

I do not take the Chicago subway or "L", which has more issues with crowding. I am guessing it might be more of an problem on those smaller trains.

That was an interesting article, but I believe you are right: the trains need to adapt to store the bikes. Everywhere you turn nowadays you are blasted with the message of "Go Green!" It kind of makes it hard, though, when we are not provided with the means.
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