Keen on exploring London on two wheels? Here's the some of the best the city has to offer for cyclists…
London school ?of cycling, Hackney
A bike novice? Then this school will help to equip you with the skills they need to confidently navigate their way through the city’s busy streets. They offer courses for adults who are complete beginners, travel training for cyclists keen to learn to tackle the roads and bike maintenance.
147 Amhurst Road, E8 2AW
Tube: Hackney Downs Rail
Street art london bike tour, East London
The vibrant artwork sprayed on the dull grey walls of east London brings the city to life. Street Art London knows where all the best pieces are to be found. On their bike tours, they introduce cyclists to the scene, taking in the handiwork of more than 40 artists. Street art in this area is beautifully dynamic and alters daily as pieces are scrubbed away by the council or replaced by fresh designs. It’s an every-changing canvas which has to be seen – before it disappears.
Sundays 10am. 3-4 hours
Tube: Tour starts outside exit two of Old Street Underground Station
Cycle-IN cinema, Bethnal Green
Cinema-goers hook up their two-wheeled beasts to a generator and proceed to pedal, powering the 4000 Lumen projector and 500W of audio equipment. Cycle on down with your friends, bring a blanket and an FM Radio to tune into Jim Hensen’s Eighties gothic fantasy, Labyrinth.
Saturday, October 9. 7.30pm
1A Goldsmiths Row, E2 8QA
Bicycle Ballet, London-wide
This professional outdoor arts company combines cycling with dance, circus skills and physical theatre. Their mass participatory performances blur the boundaries of art, sport, environment and health, transforming familiar landscapes into exciting places of discovery.
Totally Tandems Bicycle Hire, Chiswick
Just you and a mate, riding together, experiencing the great outdoors – what better way to explore London? Totally Tandem offers routes or you can sign up for the London to Brighton trip – popular with stag and hen parties.
Hire for a day, weekend or week
V&A Power of Making Exhibition, South Kensington
This exhibition features a selection of magnificent cycling creations. Highlights include a handbuilt low-rider encrusted with more than 110,000 Swarovski crystals, and a Splinter Bike, the result of a £1 bet, which has “no bolts or screws, just wood and glues”, and took 1,000 hours to design and construct. The museum is also running a Bespoke Bicycles Saddle Upholstery workshop on 15 October.
Until Jan 2, 2012
Cromwell Rd, London, SW7 2R
Tube: South Kensington
Critical Mass London, Across london
A bit like a flashpoint, this group holds spontaneous which welcome anyone to participate. It isn’t just for cyclists either: wheelchair-users, skateboarders and rollerbladers are all encouraged to take part ?and reclaim the roads in these peaceful parades. ?The Mass meets at 6pm ?on the last Friday of every month on the South Bank under Waterloo Bridge.
Last Friday of the month. 6pm
On the South Bank under Waterloo Bridge
Look Mum, No Hands! Cycling Café, Islington
This venue caters for the culinary, caffeine and mechanical needs of velophiles and thirsty locals alike. As well as coffee and cakes, it serves beer as well – the house offering is named “Slag”. In addition to the onsite workshop run by four mechanics, it regularly shows cycle racing and films on huge projector screen, and host art exhibitions. ?The Bike Film Festival will ?be holding its wrap party here on Sunday, Oct 9.
49 Old Street, EC1V 9HX
Bicycology, locations vary
Members of this non-hierarchical, non-profit organisation use their passion for cycling to promote sustainability through a combination of education, entertainment and creative direct action, implementing imaginative methods to encourage environmental responsibility. Learn how to transform old spokes into flowers, worn-out chains into bracelets, and tetra-paks into wallets at one of their workshops, or go along to a meeting to find out how you can contribute to the cycling community.
London Bicycle Tour Company, Across London
London’s first bicycle tour company was established in 1992 and was so popular it expanded to boast a bike hire company and repairs shop, too. The team are friendly, fun and relaxed and know London inside out making their tours, which take in the city’s greatest sights, fascinating and endlessly entertaining.
1a Gabriel’s Wharf, 56 ?Upper Ground, SE1 9PP
Hardcourt Bike Polo Association, across London
Who needs horses when you’ve got two wheels? London has the world’s largest bike polo community with more than 200 players – from teenagers to pensioners. The LHBPA is working towards achieving sporting status for the bike polo – and the first ladies-majority tournament, “Hell’s Belles”, kicks off this autumn. If you don’t have a bike or mallet there are plenty of players willing to lend you theirs.
Rollapaluza Roller Racing, London-wide
Roller-racing, a popular activity in the 1950s, was on the brink of extinction until the sport was revived by London’s couriers. Rollapaluza puts ?on hi-octane nights where participants battle it out ?on custom-built rollers connected to dials with ?split-second digital timing, reaching speeds in excess ?of 50mph. Thanks to the thumping music, bellowing MCs and cheering crowds, the atmosphere is always electric at these unique adrenaline-filled, beer-fuelled nights. As part of this month’s Bike Film Festival, Rollapaluza will be hosting a fixed freestyle competition at the Barbican. Be warned: it’s not for the faint-hearted (or unfit).
Thurs, Oct 6. 7pm-11pm
Barbican Centre, Silk Street, EC2Y 8DS
w hotel ?wow bike rental, Leicester square
Inspired by the distinctive Boris Bike design, cult artist Benedict Radcliffe has collaborated with celebrity designers and artists including Paloma Faith and Alice Temperley to produce customised bikes for hire for residents. At the end of October, they’ll be auctioned off for the Elton John Aids Foundation.
Until Oct 29
10 Wardour Street, W1D 6DQ
Tube: Piccadilly Circus
The Cycling Artist Exhibition, Blackheath
Tina Mammoser combines her passions for biking and art in her abstract seascape pieces. The self-styled “cycling artist” has been documenting her on-going journey along the British coastline, producing paintings capturing the ever-changing colours of the sea and sky, highlighting how the landscapes are continually shifting.
Until Oct 28
Blackheath Gallery, 34a Tranquil Vale, SE3 0AX
Tube: Blackheath Rail
Quarterre Furniture ?for Bikes, Islington
Dynamic new studio, Quarterre has just launched its debut collection of Furniture For Bikes as part of the 2011 London Design Festival. Driven by a passion for cycling, the designers have united cycling culture with interior design, using technical expertise to craft ?a range of sculptural stand. Bikes can now be seamlessly integrated stylishly into ?a home environment.
6 St John’s Place, EC1M 4NP