Cycle Hub at Teddington Station

cyclehub….was opened by the Deputy Mayor who arrived by bike (although it later transpired that it had been borrowed from her son. )  She talked about encouraging commuters to leave their cars at home ..but the remark about this leaving space for parents returning from driving their children to school suggests that the message has not fully got through. The Network Rail person’s emphasis on planning for future increase in demand was more welcome.

We get : lots of decent cycle parking – and there is space between the double decker racks to pull down the upper and load your bike from the end-  , a pump which doubles as a maintenance stand and a chained set of tools all overlooked by a security camera with info on trains and weather on a monitor.

Now all we need is good routes to cycle to the station !

Bike Marking – from Fulwell Police SNG.

Please be advised and make aware as many residents as possible about future bike marking events on Fulwell and Hampton Hill beat:

14/01/2015 16:00-17:00 – Fulwell Rail Station

17/01/2015 14:30-15:30 – Bushy Park gate (end of the High Street Hampton Hill – opposite to The Rising Sun Pub)

26/02/2015 17:00-18:00 – Fulwell Rail Station

As you may know theft of bikes from sheds is a concern across the London; often expensive bikes are left unsecure or locked with very cheap lock in poorly secured sheds.

These events will give the opportunity to mark & register your bikes, and learn how to secure your property.

Bike thefts – update from Richmond upon Thames Community Safety Partnership.

Bicycle thefts continue Over the last 4 weeks 105 individual bicycles have been stolen, worth a total value of £63,820. The peak area for thefts is Teddington with a mixture of bikes stolen from the street and the garden (mainly sheds overnight) with other locations including Twickenham town centre, Sandycoombe Road, St Margaret’s, Kew Road, Richmond and Second Avenue to Barnes High Street. Suspects include white males between 15-20 either alone or with 1 other. 55% offences took place overnight with offences during the day mainly being from the street between 12:00 to 19:59. Specialized was the most popular type of bike stolen. Tracker bikes have been deployed to various locations.

Is that how you lock your bike??

Have you had your bike tea leafed yet? Because the downside of being a borough where lots of people cycle is that there’s lots of bikes being stolen.

So here’s some key tips from the Police who attended the Cycling Liaison Group. You’ve probably heard a lot of these before, but we were surprised at how some obvious ones are still being ignored by locals.

  • Lock it to something solid 
  • Lock it through the frame
  • Spend some money on your lock. You don’t need to spend the earth on it, but you can be fairly sure that if you spend less than £20 on it, it probably won’t do a very good job for you
  • Lock it to a proper stand – British Transport Police told us that more bikes are stolen from ‘ad-hoc’ locking places like railings, than proper stands.

And, ideally, use two locks. This might be a bit of a pain, but putting two locks on a bike and following the above rules is really the best way to go about making sure no-one nicks your wheels. We’ve collated lots of advice on trying to avoid becoming another theft statistic on our bike security page.

Here’s Carlton Reid (from BikeBiz) with a video outlining all the key tips.

And finally, don’t give up hope! London Cyclist has some tips on looking for a lost bike

Now it’s “Are you one of the 4,181?”

How not to lock your bike!

When we last looked into the cycle theft stats in the borough back in 2010, the post was ‘Are you one of the 2,296’. This time around 4,181 bikes have been reported stolen between the start of 2010 and the end of July 2012. This comes after we were told that 1 in every 5 theft in the borough is of a bike. We obtained the numbers via a Freedom of Information request and we’ve uploaded both the FoI response from the Met and an analysis of the numbers so you can look at them for yourself. For comparison, this is the previous FoI response from 2010. Some of the main points:

  • On average, across the borough, 4.5 bikes are reported stolen every day (that’s a lot of unicycles..)
  • There has been an 152% increase in the number of reported thefts between 2007 and 2012, with a step change in 2010. Either the Mr Big of cycle theft has moved into the area in 2010, or perhaps there is better reporting and we are seeing a truer picture?
  • In the first 7 months of this year there have already been 938 thefts, an increase of 3% over 2011
  • Several wards have shown an improvement – Barnes;  Ham, Petersham & Richmond Riverside; Hampton and Hampton Wick wards are on track this year to nearly halve the number of bikes stolen in 2011
  • Thefts have increased significantly in several wards this year, particularly Fulwell and Hampton Hill, North Richmond and West Twickenham
  • While a greater number of bikes are recovered, due to the increase in thefts it amounts to only 5% of bicycles reported stolen

The chart below shows where the thefts have occurred since 2010 (click on the chart to see a larger version).

We asked the police in Richmond what they were doing to tackle cycle theft in the Borough and they provided the following statement:

“Richmond upon Thames SNT’s regularly perform cycle marking at a variety of community events and locations. SNT’s also operate an ‘on demand’ system to mark cycles for the public. Since inception, the total number of cycles security marked across the borough is just approaching 12500 (as of 15/08/2012). They also plan their patrols around the locations of reported crime and the feedback received from Police Liaison Group meetings with local residents. The Richmond Borough Safer Transport Team do a lot of work around the borough’s transport hubs to deter and prevent thefts. They have run and continue to do so, pro active operations targeted at bicycle thieves and their uniformed presence at rail stations is a key deterrent. Richmond Borough Police also work closely with the Richmond Local Authority as part of the Community Safety Partnership. They post cycle crime prevention advice via both the Council and Police websites as well as through Twitter. Communication on cycle crime prevention advice is provided by Operation Lockout at regular events in collaboration with SNT’s. Pan London the Metropolitan Police Service has The Cycle Task Force which is a dedicated unit to tackle cycle theft and improve cycle security across London.”

Here at RCC, earlier this year we contacted Richmond Police, with the offer to promote their cycle marking events on our website and in our monthly email newsletter – so far North Richmond, South Richmond and Kew Safer Neighbourhood Teams have taken us up on our offer and we hope others will too. We’ve also produced an updated Bike Security page, with advice on how to lock your bike securely, getting it marked and minimising your chances of becoming a statistic in our next round up in two years time. As a local cyclist shared with us, it’s not fun losing your pride and joy.

Community and Police Partnership meeting report

A few items of cycling interest.

Bike Theft. – the police reported 506 bikes stolen (from street ?) and 683 “non-residential burglaries (mainly bikes stolen from sheds) for the year so far. The latter is a 7% increase. I did ask whether this usually unlocked sheds – apparently not always.  Expensive bikes are being targeted. One decoy bike was stolen and quickly taken to Westminster. The Borough Commander – CSI Chalk who is himself a regular cyclist – will send on more details and I will add them here.

Sgt Boulton of  Richmond Park Safer Parks Team told me that they had a problem with cyclists not wanting to mar their lightweight bikes with a lock and then leaving them outside a cafe. They will tag bikes on request.

Usual complaints from an individual about cyclists on the footway in Broad Street , Teddington. Why on earth would anyone do that when congestion traffic-calms the road pretty effectively ?

Notice of 3 LBRuT cycle schemes

Details of 3 schemes have been posted recently on the Richmond Borough website and the associated reports give an insight on their strategic thinking.  Paragraph 6.3 of the Cross Deep report says “The Council will seek to provide practical facilities for the safe and convenient movement of cyclists” which gives us a standard to test both the credibility of the existing network and planned work.  It goes on to talk about “the development of a local cycle route to complement the London Cycle Network” and “New development must be designed to give high priority to cycle facilities and to link to the cycle route network and include secure parking in accordance with standards.”

I said in previous postings secure cycle parking is a recurring theme in current and future spending plans and this is why:”It will also seek to provide and support the provision of secure parking areas for cycles in shopping and leisure centres, public transport interchanges and other public buildings.” Cycle Parking at Railway Stations lists the net increase of 116 cycle spaces for £105,000 and in Teddington High Street 5 stands as part of a scheme costing £14,000.

Send your thoughts on these schemes to ahead of the next meeting of the Cycling Liaison Group on Monday 24th January.