Cyclists call for safer on-street storage

Scores of people have signed a petition calling for secure and sheltered bicycle storage at the Seven Dials.

Mark Bason, of Addison Road, Hove, started the petition, and obtained more than a hundred signatures.

All of those signing the petition – aimed at Brighton and Hove City Council – also expressed their interest in making use of better bike storage in the area.

Dr Bason said: “As an example of the response to the need, many UK councils have installed ‘bikehangars’ for their communities.

“These bikehangars fit into a standard two-metre parking bay and hold six bikes in the space of half a car.

“In Lambeth, the availability of these cycle parking spaces is outstripping demand. Users pay £3.50 per month for rental.”

Dr Bason said that the council was encouraging cycling but many people could not store a bike at home.

He started the petition after discussing bike thefts in the area during the first lockdown in April and May with his neighbours.

One said that they had seen secure bikehangar storage in London and that it could work well in streets like theirs where many people were living in flats in converted houses.

Dr Bason said: “I hadn’t heard of them before but once I saw them I thought they were quite cool.

“It seems they’re quite successful and in demand in London so why not have them here.”

Dr Bason said that he wanted to cycle to work at Sussex University but lived in a second-floor flat and could not store a bike indoors because of the building’s tight corners.

He said: “It’s hard to be able to cycle anywhere if you can’t store it. Leaving it on the street is not great. It’s not just the thefts. It’s the weather.”

The petition calls for a pilot scheme trialling bikehangars – or something similar – in the Seven Dials area before the scheme is extended across the city.

A bikehangar was installed in Shaftesbury Road, Brighton, near London Road railway station 10 years ago.

Dr Bason’s petition is due to be presented to the council’s Environment, Transport and Sustainability Committee at a “virtual” meeting at 4pm on Tuesday 24 November. The meeting is scheduled to be webcast on the council’s website.

To sign the petition, click here.

  1. Greens Out Reply

    Until the courts come down hard on thieves, which they won’t, Dr Basam, you may as well piss in the wind.

    There is no WAY I’d ever leave any of my my bikes, or cars before you pro cyclists get on your high horse…you can enjoy both…ANYWHERE in this town. Ever.

  2. Billy Reply

    My precious city bike was stolen a month ago – when doubly padlocked up to a railing outside a bar, and in full view of the pub security staff. I had two pints and then came out to get my bike, but it was gone.
    We can’t win with these thieves who go unchallenged whilst the police have other crime to chase.

    The best we can do is to use three locks and pay for good insurance. If you report to the police your bike got stolen then the best you get is a crime number – for the insurance. You won’t see that treasured bike again.

    It cost me several hundred pounds to replace a very basic folding bike – one that I can carry upstairs to store in my flat. I’m now fearful of locking it up outside anywhere I can’t guard it.
    There’s no way I’d leave my bike locked up outside, in a street-side ‘thief magnet’.
    Plus we have enough of this sort of misplaced/rusting clutter on our streets already.

    There’s the fantasy about how lovely it is to be cycling in this city – and then there’s this reality…

  3. Fabio Reply

    Bike theft is an epidemic in the city. Whilst the idea sounds good, nothing is truly secure and if I was a bike thief the ‘sheltered’ and paid for storage would be the first bikes to try and steal because they probably are the really expensive ones.

  4. Max Reply

    These secure cycle parking facilities would be a small step to levelling up privilege. Thousands of private cars are allowed to occupy publicly-owned space in residential roads for hours, days and weeks on end for free or for an annual permit of about £130 when commercial parking spaces would cost drivers at least £800 p.a. So Council Tax payers are effectively subsidising residential street parking.

  5. Valerie Reply

    People in converted house flats are really disadvantaged as carrying bikes up stairs & not having adequate internal space makes owning one nearly impossible.

    i usef to live up 65 stairs in The Drive & had a bike. I chained it outside on the property. Then an order came disallowing bikes in the (huge) entrance hall or outside on the property & my bike ended up storaged, then sold.

    Newbuild blocks of flats all have bike storage designed in, but lack of off-street options is blocking greater bike use for sure.

    The clutter of cars, huge bins, signs & lights is already ugly & stressful, so cycle storage will add to that, so needs to be more attractive than the one shown here.

  6. Steve Reply

    If you’re going to leave a bike locked up on the street make sure it’s a cheap bike. I am lucky enough to have 3 bikes. A road bike, a mtb and a ‘beer’ bike. I only ever leave the 20 year old £50 second hand Raleigh beer bike locked up as I’ve learnt my lesson. When I use it I am often surprised how well it rides for such a trashed looking bike. If everyone only locked up cheap bikes it would drive down the profit and demand of thieves. There’s also safety in numbers so the more bikes out there the safer yours will be. Add to that the Dutch rule of having one more lock than your neighbour’s bike and you’ll be fine.

  7. Chaz Reply

    Cyclists paying for something? Yes please provide these and make them pay their way.
    Whatever next, responsible cyclists and no pavement riding nor ignoring traffic lights?
    Bring it on.

  8. Dan Reply

    Brighton & Hove lacks the option of secure bike storage facilities. I, as many others, must prioritise between affordable accommodation vs. ample space. I love to cycle however housing costs means immensely less storage space. So, locking my bike up outside means risking theft, damage & weathering…all of which have a major cost.
    Please give proper consideration to secure bike storage. I’d happily pay a fee to know I could rely on a storage facility rather than needing to replace my bike much sooner than necessary.

  9. Adam Khan Reply

    People love bikes. If the City truly does as well, leaders should instruct the police to start treating bike thefts with appropriate seriousness. And enable safe bike storage — I for one would be happy to pay. As the comments seem to unanimously agree, these actions are much more important than daftly-placed bike lanes on roads no one wants to bike on.

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