South West trains reverses Olympic bike ban

Just 36 hours after announcement, operator bows to mounting pressure from cycle commuters
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South West Trains has reversed its ban on non folding bikes aboard services during the Olymic Games just 36 hours after the announcement appeared on its website.

The CTC has been following train companies and their plans for Olympic travel closely, posting a link to the Association of Train Operating Companies leaflet on travelling with bikes during the games here.

For a full round up of services and cycle allowances during the Olympics, see here: Association of Train Operating Companies leaflet

Chris Peck, the CTC’s policy co-ordinator said: “This move, made just 17 days before the Games, would have made life for cyclists trying to reach work, education - and even the Games themselves - much harder. We’re glad to see that common sense has prevailed and South West Trains have swiftly reversed their decision to ban all non-folding bikes.”

South West trains told the CTC: "Clearly, during the Olympics and Paralympics games our train services are going to be even busier. We will be carrying significant numbers of extra passengers on top of our normal levels of daily customers. We have considered carefully the position regarding cycles over the period of London 2012, including listening to feedback from our customers and our staff. Following that review, we have decided that our policy for non-folding and folding bicycles will remain unchanged throughout the Olympic and Paralympic Games.

"The only exception will be on 28 and 29 July, when we will be unable to carry bicycles on our services via Epsom. This is also the case with other train operators and will ensure we can carry the maximum number of passengers to see the cycle race at Box Hill."

If you are unsure about whether your local operator is allowing cycles on board, National Rail's contact centre is available on 08457 48 49 50, while the website is found at www.nationalrail.co.uk/cyclingbytrain

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