It may be autumn; the summer may be over; but falling leaves are no excuse to stop cycling. Lacking confidence? Free training is available. No ride? There are now new, ‘dockless’ bikes for hire – from Mobike.
The new bikes were made available in Acton in September and 750 of them have been placed in the borough for hire so far, with more to follow. Ealing Council has teamed up with operator Mobike to make it possible.
These dockless bikes do not need to be chained up or put on a cycle stand.
They are easy to use and affordable to hire and can be found whenever you want to pick one up. All you have to do is download an app on to your phone or device, and use it to find one of the bikes and digitally unlock it. Once you are finished, you park the bike in a designated area and lock it so it is ready for the next person to hire.
Councillor Bassam Mahfouz, the council’s cabinet member for transport, environment and leisure, said: “These new bikes are perfect for short journeys and I hope people will make use of them to get around. They will also help anyone who would like to cycle but are put off by the up-front expense of buying a bike, or by a lack of storage.”
Here are simple tips for making your winter cycling as enjoyable as it is in the warmer months:
- Check your tyres and brakes regularly (and use the free Dr Bike maintenance sessions around the borough – see more at www.ealing.gov.uk/cycling)
- Wear brightly coloured, reflective clothing, use lights on your bike and position yourself on the road to be visible to traffic
- If you buy waterproof trousers and jacket you can keep pedalling, regardless of the weather.
NEED A LITTLE MORE ENCOURAGEMENT?
If you want to feel more confident cycling in winter conditions, have not cycled for years, or are a total novice, the council runs cycle training all year round through Cycle Training UK for people of all ages.
It offers tailored help to cyclists of all abilities – from beginners upwards. Call 0800 093 6454 or visit www.cycletraining.co.uk