After the success of the Olympics in 2012 Boris Johnson was keen to maintain some of the spirit and enthusiasm the city had for sport and decided to host a cycling festival in London last year. As such, the Prudential RideLondon was born and it was such a success that it returned to the capital this past weekend. I was curious to see what it would be like over the weekend.
There were various festival zones setup throughout the city where they had lots of cool activities going on from world record attempts, live music, children’s activities and much, much more making it more than just a day out on the bike for those involved.
For most of the day on Saturday a ten-mile long route of roads passing some of the cities most iconic landmarks was closed off to normal traffic and used as a giant cycle lane. It was a fun, friendly family event and thanks to the sun making an appearance an all round lovely day for a cycle! You could register in advance and use your own bike or of course just hop on a Barclays Hire Cycle (Boris bikes for those of you in the know) and enjoy a leisurely cycle. This is exactly what my friend Grant and I did after a wander around the Green Park festival zone. It was my first time using a Boris bike (another post about that coming soon) and also riding any bike in about two years so it was nice to know that you were safe from cars along the route. We went from Embankment to the festival zone at Tower Bridge and had a lot of fun doing so seeing parts of London I’ve never seen before.
The route closed at 4pm which gave people time to pop over to St James’s Park in time for the RideLondon Grand Prix. Grant and I chose not to head there instead having a well-earned drink and then a touristy wander across Tower Bridge.There was also the Prudential RideLondon-Surrey 100 which took place on the Sunday, a 100 mile ride starting at the Olympic Park down through Surrey and back again. I didn’t see any of this as I had a super busy Sunday but it must be quite an achievement. I was feeling slightly breathless after just the two miles we did!
I would love to cycle to and from work instead of taking the tube but sadly there isn’t a Hire Cycle docking point close enough to home to warrant it and I’m also bloody terrified by the traffic in central London as well. I wish they would close the London streets to cars more often! How cool would a pedestrianised city limit be?
Photos shamelessley stolen from Grant so why not head on over to check out his Facebook page.