London – On Sunday 16 July 2017, We Ride London is holding its first weekend awareness ride in London, riding from the Epping Forest Tea Hut to the Blackheath Tea Hut.
We Ride London Is Campaigning To Stop Motorcycles And Scooters being Driven Off The Capital’s Roads
We Ride London is an unaffiliated and inclusive campaign acting as the main lobby and pressure group for grass-root riders of motorcycles, scooters and mopeds in London. It is also supporting the hundreds of small businesses that will be significantly impacted by some of the changes proposed by City Hall, including the ULEZ (Ultra Low Emission Zone) pollution charge.
We Ride London’s five campaign objectives to help the capital’s riders are:
- Protection of lane widths to allow safe filtering
- Exclusion from congestion and pollution charging
- Universal use of bus lanes nationally, as pioneered by Transport for London
- Adequate secure motorcycle parking
- More action against increasing bike theft and bike-jacking
We Ride London won’t stop until these objectives have been addressed, and it will continue to campaign and ride.
Since launching in late November 2016, We Ride London has gained more than 2,500 supporters through social media, and featured in numerous articles in the press and on radio and TV.
We Ride London is a truly inclusive movement, with a hugely diverse cross-section of supporters. It asks that whether you are a daily rider of a 20-year-old scooter, a 40-year-old classic, a be-chromed V-twin or the latest sports bike, you will join the campaign before motorcycles and scooters are banished from London forever.
Alongside the grass-root supporters, we’re delighted to welcome to the movement riding celebrities including adventure motorcyclist Charley Boorman (The Long Way Down with Ewan McGregor) and Matthew Wright (Channel 5’s The Wright Stuff).
Having such high-profile backers helps We Ride London reach more of the road users in London who identify themselves as functional riders of motorcycles and scooters, as well as those who may choose to ride for recreation in addition to commuting.
Charley Boorman notes: “Motorcycling in London is part of the solution for reducing congestion and pollution as much as bicycling, but policy makers continue to ignore the positive benefit motorcycling brings to our capital. Most people who ride in London do so because it’s cheaper and quicker than other forms of transport, and they have journeys that aren’t practical on a bicycle. Motorcycles take up less road space, are proven through TfL’s own studies to contribute to less than 1% of the overall pollution in London, and are more versatile than bicycles. Other capitals around the world recognise and embrace this; why not London?”
Matthew Wright adds: “Motorcycle and scooter riders are at the bottom of the pile – a long, long way below pedal cyclists, whose successful lobbying has won them miles of underused cycle lanes worth tens of millions of pounds. We Ride London and its supporters want to change the common perception of motorcyclists. We want road planners to be consistent; for instance, some London bus lanes are open to motorcycles, others are not – for no apparent reason. Motorcycle and scooter theft is rampant and parking bays are regularly surveyed by thieves, but the police response to bike theft is increasingly poor. Plans to charge riders of not especially old motorcycles a £12.50 daily ‘pollution fee’, when the combined emissions of all the capital’s motorbikes and scooters is barely one per cent of the total, speaks volumes about current attitudes towards riders. Instead of being seen as a greener alternative to cars – which frequently contain only a single driver, who is often distracted by their phone – we are sidelined and ignored. Thousands of Londoners ride London, so please help make our journeys safer.”
We Ride London is delighted and grateful to receive the support of companies and other groups, but ultimately it remains truly independent.
There is no membership fee for We Ride London. It’s not a club – it’s a collective of likeminded individuals who want to achieve the same outcome: a brighter future for riders in London.
In order to achieve that outcome, We Ride London has been running a two-pronged campaign:
- Public facing, to raise awareness of the campaign issues, gain support and build public empathy for the cause. This has mainly been through social media, press, public meetings, word of mouth and awareness rides.
- Behind-the-scenes meetings and lobbying with TfL, City Hall, London boroughs and national government.
We Ride London has already been invited to meet with representatives of City Hall and TfL, and present to the All-Party Parliamentary Motorcycling Group. All meetings have been very positive so far, and will continue until the campaign objectives lead to concessions in national and London policies.
On 6 April 2017 We Ride London held its first awareness ride in central London, with over 100 of the capital’s motorcyclists and scooterists turning out for a weekday ride through the city’s main streets.
They rode with respect and courtesy, and – in order to gain the maximum impact and exposure – did not filter through traffic. The route took them from Regent’s Park, through central London and finally to City Hall, incorporating a number of the capital’s landmarks.
The group arrived at City Hall at 3:30pm as planned, where some of the We Ride London team including Charley Boorman handed over a letter to Mayor Sadiq Khan and his team outlining the campaign’s objectives.
First Weekend Awareness Ride In London
Join the first weekend awareness ride in London, riding from the Epping Forest Tea Hut through the City and over Tower Bridge to the Blackheath Tea Hut.
Meeting at 9:30AM on July 16th to leave at 10AM sharp.
If you miss the start, you should be able to catch up at Tower Bridge/Tooley Street if you go there directly.
The weather looks good so they are expecting a good turnout.
More details of the July event can be found on their website: Tea Hut to Tea Hut Ride: July 16th
If you are interested in adding your support to We Ride London and getting involved in future events, please follow it on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, or see its website at www.weridelondon.com