I am slowly getting more confident on getting about with Lebs locally in SW16. I haven’t quite conquered the main high street with him yet, so I’m lucky it is still easily reachable via several back streets! The thought of pedalling furiously down the highroad in the bus lane with Lebs singing Fireman Sam songs and 2 or 3 buses looming over me just isn’t appealing to my sense of fun yet!
However even with limited high street experience I am noticing an issue. Not just with the need for cycle lanes, but with parking my bike. I wanted to take Lebs to the cinema in Streatham on two wheels in 10 minutes instead of two pairs of feet in 30 minutes. There are only 4 bike rails outside and I found them like this:
A little further down, on the other side of the road, this was the situation:
The pigeon on the right looked about as perplexed as me! It was a little more crowded then I had expected. The rails are all placed strategically enough. Two on the main road outside the library, four by the cinema and a two periodically along the high street outside supermarkets or banks. However they are popular. I walk or ride along the high road every day and a lot of these are in use from early on in the day
Later, at the nursery (also Streatham), the only place I could find to stick my bike was by the kitchens. My D lock couldn’t fit around the fixture there, so it’s a good thing it came with a cable. There was no cycle parking outside on the road, probably owing to the fact that the pavement is narrow. I noted that there is plenty of car parking provided in the nursery and most establishments along the same route.
Later, a couple of miles away in Norbury Highstreet I found all these rails in a small stretch of the main road, primarily surrounding the library:
Norbury is run by the Croydon borough whilst Streatham is within Lambeth. It’s such a shame to find the rails in Norbury largely unused. I think the placement of them is worse than Streatham. Why so many outside the library which is not particularly close to the other shops and banks and less along the main high street? It would be wonderful to see reflective strips on the bike rails in Streatham and more of them. I think the Streatham cinema is very central and would benefit from more cycle parking. What do you think? Do you find cycle parking sufficient in Lambeth?
*If you live in Lambeth like me and would like to read more about cycle parking then click here*