Summer sun gets Brits on their bikes

The current heatwave is getting Brits out on their bikes. Bike shops are reporting an uptick in sales as existing cyclists appear to be riding more, and fair-weather cyclists have been buying more cycle accessories after dusting down their machines to take advantage of the sunny conditions.

Without a national sales data service it’s hard to accurately track this uplift but a proxy is available via the daily use of bike share schemes. Dockless operators have reported a surge in rentals, as has London’s Santander Cycles hire scheme. June 2018 saw the most rentals on record for any June since the capital’s cycle hire scheme began in 2010 with more than one million rides.

The 1.18m rentals of TfL’s cycle hire bikes in June follows a record-breaking May with 1.1m hires.

"London’s heatwave has helped encourage even more people to explore the capital on two wheels," said a TfL statement, adding that "record-breaking figures for Santander Cycles show that cycle hire is playing a significant role in helping to further grow cycling numbers across the capital."

TfL installed cyclist counters on the Blackfriars Bridge and Victoria Embankment Cycle Superhighways in February. These counters show that more than 1.2 million cyclists have now used CS3 and CS6. The highest number of cyclists was seen on 26th June, with nearly 13,000 cyclists passing the counters.

London’s Walking and Cycling Commissioner Will Norman said: “It’s fantastic to see record numbers of people enjoying cycling in this summer weather."

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