Simon commutes from Surrey into central London five days a week, alternating between folding bike/train and road bike. Mutual respect between motorists and cyclists is important to Simon, as is a strong cup of coffee after his 26 mile commute!
Name: Simon Runton
Workplace: St John Ambulance head office, London
Tell us about your commuting rig:
2 rigs – the one that folds and goes on trains 3 to 4 days a week and the big dog that covers the other days.
Rig 1 – Mezzo D9 – 4 years old and still going strong, good fun to ride and folds into a neat bundle on the train
Rig 2 – Giant SCR C4 – Precursor to the Giant Defy and does the longer ride into work from home
What’s your commute like?
Rig 1 – head down from home to the local station, slight incline but that’s it for the 5 minute pelt to the platform. Once the train arrives at Waterloo it’s a nippy trip past the Imax toward Blackfriars Bridge, straight over toward Farringdon, then a right turn to Smithfield Market and onto St John’s Lane some 10 to 15 minutes later, depending on traffic and traffic lights.
Rig 2 – This takes the ride up past the Drift Golf club in Horsley on one of the most rutted roads in Surrey. Through Cobham and Esher and along the Thames to Kingston. Cut through to Richmond Park, emerging at Roehampton gate. Up to Putney Bridge, across the river, then right along the Kings Road, past Buckingham Palace, Trafalgar Sq to Aldwych and the Old Bailey toward Holborn and onto Smithfield Market and before ducking into a local coffee shop some 26 miles and an hour and a half later, for a brew, then round the corner to work.
How many days a week do you commute by bike?
What do you enjoy the most about bike commuting?
There’s something about being on a bike that gives me a real buzz. It’s a pretty good way to kick off and end a day.
What’s your least favourite thing about commuting by bike?
In no particular order:
Reaching my destination
Too many poorly maintained roads
Drivers who don’t respect other road users
Cyclists who don’t respect other road users
What are your main reasons to commute by bike?
Simple reason - I really enjoy it.
Have you got any funny or interesting bike commuting stories or experiences to share?
Apart from the odd bumps and bruises the one thing that stood out from the norm was the feel-good factor among the many cyclists at the Blackfriars bridge protest, good company. A rarity among commuters generally.
What’s your killer commuting tip?
Stay alert and ride a steady line
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