Barclays Cycle Dire…

I read yesterday about ‘cycle’ rack rage in the capital, in reference to theBarclays sponsored Bicycle Hire scheme. Part of me found the story funny, imagining the scene of people squabbling over cycle racks, but there’s also a serious point to it…

A couple of Monday’s ago, with the sun shining and the birds tweeting, I headed to my local Barclays Cycle Hire station to travel to my dental appointment. Stupidly, I thought the day would go positively!

I arrived at the docking station and like most of the times in the past, there were no bikes to hire! Hmmm… I thought to myself, a walk to the next station it was. As I approached the second one, I saw two bikes left in the docks and thought ‘cool’. But, I found myself disappointed yet again. Both bikes had red lights showing, which sadly meant for me they were faulty and I couldn’t take one.

So, off to a third station I trotted, some distance away mind you. And yes, you guessed it – upon my arrival whilst sweating like a camel in the dessert (do they actually sweat?), there were no bikes to be seen. I gave up and headed for the local bus stop and arrived nicely late for my appointment.

On a recent Wednesday mid-afternoon, I went to my local docking station to cycle into town. Upon my approach, I saw about 15 Barclays bikes. I did however think… it was too good to be true… it being the afternoon and lots of bikes available. And it was. All bikes showed red, after I inserted my key. A faulty docking station this time!

It’s great having a bicycle hire scheme, but not so when it doesn’t work. In the mornings you can’t get a bike as the stations are empty and in the evenings (if you’ve been lucky to get one), you can’t dock because they’re full.

I signed-up for the scheme at the start of it, but sadly it’s just not delivering. I have ‘tried’ most of the stations in London, too. I’m thinking the Mayor doesn’t have this problem with his bikes! It was a great idea and the bikes look pretty in blue, but some ‘supposedly‘ undeveloped capitals transport systems (and bikes) put ours to shame… and I’ve been around!

So, back to walking for me it is then.

This has been a very slow peddaling ‘View from the Bottom’ on the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme.

Ciao, Max.

Oh yes, for transparency, I’ve sent a copy of my blog to Barclays Cycle Hire / Transport for London

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© Kevin Maxwell Film, Media & Performance 2011 – Published by My Mum