Wandsworth cyclists anticipate Boris Bike information meeting


The first in a series of free public sessions, locations for the new bike docking stations will be discussed tomorrow.


By Alex Christian

Wandsworth’s cyclists will have their first Boris Bike information meeting in Putney tomorrow.

The first in a series of free public sessions, locations for the new bike docking stations will be discussed.

Wandsworth residents can also provide feedback on the current shortlist of docking sites, used to hire and return a bike for as little as £1 for 30 minutes.

The information sessions follow Mayor Boris Johnson’s and TfL’s announcement three weeks ago that the hugely popular Barclays Cycle Hire Scheme will expand into south-west London.

Wandsworth residents were first asked last year to help pick suitable locations for the docking stations.

Sixty points are set to be installed in the north of the borough across Putney, Wandsworth Town, Clapham and Battersea by spring 2014.

Wandsworth Council had pushed for the introduction of Boris Bikes into the area as part of a wider improvement to its transport network.

Council Leader Ravi Govindia said: “It’s fantastic to see this exciting project moving forward.

“We’ve fought long and hard to secure this expansion and we will continue to press for a borough-wide roll out in the months ahead.

“The job’s not finished until every household in Wandsworth is covered by this scheme.”

London boroughs included in the expansion were asked to contribute £2million towards the scheme, with Wandsworth Council targeting funds from a levy on local developers.

Docking stations will also be brought into Kensington & Chelsea, Lambeth and Hammersmith & Fulham – over 2,000 new bikes plus 5,000 new docking stations will be in place by spring 2014.

Putney cyclist Ben Storey, 23, said: “I’ve used Boris Bikes in areas like Hyde Park where it’s really safe to cycle, and Putney and Wandsworth have a lot of green spaces so I’d definitely use them here recreationally.

“I’ve wanted them in the wider area for a while. It’s a very good service – my dad and myself have been subjected to quite a few thefts in the past so to ride a bike without actually needing to own it and only pay £45 a year is good value.”

However, Mr Storey added he would not use the service as part of his daily commute without a safer cycle route brought to Wandsworth.

“I don’t feel confident enough on a bike to get from Putney to central London daily – I would definitely like to see some more cycle highways introduced.”

Such topics will be discussed at tomorrow’s Boris Bike meeting held in Putney Exchange Shopping Centre on the High Street between 4pm-6pm.

There will be two further information sessions on Tuesday, one in ASDA by Clapham Junction between 12pm-2pm and one in Wandsworth Town’s Southside Shopping Centre from 4pm-6pm.

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