Bike Minded in the Borough of Kensington and Chelsea

Here at ibikelondon we're big fans of some of the work the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea does in promoting riding a bike as a means of getting about.  This is the borough that staged the excellent "Like Riding a Bike" exhibition last year, mounted the "Road Hug" safety campaign, and invited, um, me, to speak at their annual cycling forum this year on 'Inviting Cycling'.  The Council Chambers even have their very own Boris Bike docking station; if that's not sending out a pro-bike message then I don't know what is.

The Borough is continuing its fantastic work with the launch of their most recent project.  The "Bike Minded" website will become a central point of reference for cyclists in the area and those who would like to ride a bike.  They can find out where their nearest bike shop is, learn about how to access cycle training, find out about the best routes through the borough and read interviews with other movers and shakers in the cycling world.



What I really like about this project is the non-preachy approach that Bike Minded takes.  There's no stern lectures about red light jumping or wearing a helmet, no insistence that you *must* get dressed up in order to go for a ride.  It just accepts that all kinds of cycling are valid and sends out the message that wherever you ride in the Borough you are officially welcome.  With over 8000 people on bikes in this one Borough alone, it's nice to know the powers that be care.

The website is easy to use and full of funky graphics and positive images of everyday and ordinary cyclists.  It also offers aspiring cyclists the chance to ride some brand new very beautiful bikes - including a Moulton - to see if they like it.  I could only dream of riding a bike like that when I first started out!

And to prove that cycling in London doesn't just have to be all about getting to work, they've produced a downloadable App which will take you on a guided bike tour of the Blue Plaques of Kensington and Chelsea; find out where Oscar Wilde used to hang out and Mark Twain's old haunts.

If every London borough was as switched on and bike facing as this, we'd really be starting to get somewhere!

The BikeMinded website is here, as well as on Twitter and Facebook.

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3 comments:

Living In London Guide said...

Great site! Ive recently taken the leap into cycling, so think Ill be back for some tips! Thanks!

Jon said...

Despite this project, RBKC remains one of the worst central London boroughs to cycle in, though. This sort of initiative is headline grabbing, but is actually cheaper and much less helpful for cyclists than taking action such as installing cycle lanes and cycle parking, putting in 20mph zones or getting rid of gyratories that RBKC is much less keen on.

Don't be a sucker to their PR team and fall for this cut-price substitute!

George Johnston said...

Completely agree with Jon's comment above.

RBKC is one of the worst boroughs for London in terms of cycle infrastructure and has no substantially segregated cycle routes along any of its roads. Instead of building these, or going 20 MPH, it wastes hundreds of thousands of £ each year on 'BikeMinded' which achieves no changes to lethal road layout whatsoever.

What about Eilidh Cairns who was killed because the Council refuse to segregate Notting Hill Gate junction?