Brighton > London: Return train journey

I'm sure plenty of you have completed the cycle ride from London to Brighton before and I'm interested to find out how (if you decided not to cycle it) you made it back to London on the train.
I'm planning to ride to Brighton for the first time in a few weeks with around 10 friends and we were hoping to simply (perhaps naively) bring our bikes on the train back to London in the evening. However with current Olympic restrictions on Southern Railways this could be problematic.

Has anyone done this return train journey recently without difficulty?


Full time tea drinker
Armonmy Way
There's some info about this on the Fridays ride to Brighton here

Tim Hall

Word on the street platform is that First Capital Connect don't have an Olympian Bike Ban, while Southern do. Both companies run trains out of Brighton to London, going to London Bridge and Victoria respectively. Southern also provide the station staff at Brighton. The story is that the platform staff have been made aware of the difference between the two cpmany's policies and you should be OK getting on an FCC train.
10 bikes on one train will require a degree of tactical packing, with bikes scattered along the train. Some FCC stock is what is called "old and kanckered" with fewer bike opportunities, while some of it is the same style as Southern, with space by each disabled loo, of which there is one per 4 coach set.

Bear in mind their normal restrictions will apply, which basically stop you from putting a bike on the train during peak hours. Definitions of peak hours are found on each company's website.


Thanks all for the prompt responses.

I actually emailed Southern and FCC recently to try and get a definitive answer. Southern replied:
"During the London 2012 Games, we are expecting our trains to be even busier than usual. We welcome fully folded (Brompton style) bikes on our trains at any time, however normal bikes will not be permitted on any of our main line rotes this includes the Brighton line, this rule will be in place until the 9 September 2012. I apologies for any inconvenience caused to you and I hope all your future journeys are pleasant."

Meanwhile FCC referred me to their website which I didn't feel was totally clear. From what I gather, I can use their trains but not at a peak time. We're looking to return after 19:00 on a Sunday (5th Aug) which I think SHOULD leave us in the all-clear. I just don't want to get down there only to find that they won't let us on.

Appreciate all your comments - hopefully we won't be left stranded in Brighton!

Tim Hall

Sunday is off peak regardless of time of day, so you should be fine on an FCC. Up to date news should be available on the morning of Saturday 4th August, when those who aren't riding back from the FNRTTC will try to get on FCC trains.
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