London Drivers

Heltor Chasca

Out-riding the Black Dog
Here's a massive shout out to London drivers. I cycled into Paddington in the wee hours of the morning on an event this weekend. London was heaving. The place was alive. Young and old. Traffic flowed and was very busy but not gridlocked. ALL of the drivers were tolerant, well behaved and skilled around us night riders. I felt at ease and had a great experience so thank you if you were out and about.

Yes I know this isn’t always the case all the time and the infrastructure is junk. (I cycled in London for 5 years). But compared to the rest of the country which I also cycle in, London drivers you are streets ahead. Be proud.
 

mustang1

Guru
Location
London, UK
Cycling in London is great. +1 to what op said.
 

ianrauk

Tattooed Beat Messiah
I have commuted in London since the very early 80's. The difference between then and now is amazingly different. Back then you were literally taking your life in your hands. These day's drivers are far more aware and savvy around cyclists. Of course you do still have your fair share of knobhead drivers and the mobile phone menace is just that. But over all, cycling in London can be a pretty good experience
 

Slick

Guru
Streets ahead of who exactly and I don't mean to be ungrateful or anything but shouldn't not running over the top of a cyclist be minimum requirement rather than reason for a big up?

Also, there's a number of videos on YouTube that tends to question your findings.

Good you had a great experience though. :thumbsup:
 
OP
Heltor Chasca

Heltor Chasca

Out-riding the Black Dog
Streets ahead of who exactly and I don't mean to be ungrateful or anything but shouldn't not running over the top of a cyclist be minimum requirement rather than reason for a big up?

Also, there's a number of videos on YouTube that tends to question your findings.

Good you had a great experience though. :thumbsup:
My experience tends to be based on the time I am out on the road rather than media portrayals. We must also have slightly different feed algorithms as the YouTube feeds I see are mainly about people having pleasant experiences riding in London. Cargo bikes, families, tourers, bike-based businesses, developments in infrastructure etc. You know: POSITIVE stuff.

My 5 years commuting in London means I have a strong understanding of the reality so don’t misinterpret my OP as a rose tinted, one off experience by any means.

But thanks anyway, I had a great experience.
 

Slick

Guru
My experience tends to be based on the time I am out on the road rather than media portrayals. We must also have slightly different feed algorithms as the YouTube feeds I see are mainly about people having pleasant experiences riding in London. Cargo bikes, families, tourers, bike-based businesses, developments in infrastructure etc. You know: POSITIVE stuff.

My 5 years commuting in London means I have a strong understanding of the reality so don’t misinterpret my OP as a rose tinted, one off experience by any means.

But thanks anyway, I had a great experience.
I wasn't trying to question your experiences, and I was being genuine when I said I was glad you had a great experience.

As for the YouTube thing, it's easy to get a skewed perception of anything from watching too many videos on there but I am surprised none pop up on your feed.

I was also interested to know how you know how these drivers are streets ahead of the drivers in Perth or Inverness?

I thought you wanted to discuss it, that's why I posed the question.
 

Smokin Joe

Legendary Member
The last time I went back to London (Nearly five years ago) it brought home to me how good London drivers were compared to other parts of the country. Quick, efficient and disciplined with a high degree of courtesy when you needed to change lanes for example. Of course there are idiots up there like there are anywhere else, but it is too easy to remember only our encounters with them and forget that most journeys are incident free when interacting with the thousands of others we regularly come across.
 

rugby bloke

Veteran
Location
Northamptonshire
I agree with the OP. After 7 years riding in Central London I have had overwhelmingly positive experiences with other road users. I genuinely believe that drivers are more savy and cycle aware. I have had a lot more close calls riding along quite B roads in Northants.
 

Grant Fondo

Oswalds legs look strangely human?
Location
Cheshire
I have commuted in London since the very early 80's. The difference between then and now is amazingly different. Back then you were literally taking your life in your hands. These day's drivers are far more aware and savvy around cyclists. Of course you do still have your fair share of knobhead drivers and the mobile phone menace is just that. But over all, cycling in London can be a pretty good experience
I agree I used to cycle from Shepherds Bush to Goodge St in the 80s and it was bloody awful.
 

mjr

Comfy armchair to one person & a plank to the next
I've ridden in London on my recumbent, Brompton and upright bike and not had a bad experience. It is generally pretty relaxing.
Particularly the long enforced rests at many traffic lights with shoot timings for cyclists... It is pretty good, but if I could change one thing, it would be to retime the lights to optimise for cycle routes and add Dutch-style countdowns so you don't have to stand ready all the while.
 

YukonBoy

The Monch
Location
Inside my skull
Agree about the lights. Was on CS6 a few weeks back and you couldn't get from one set of lights tuning green to the next before they turned red. So you had a nice rest about every 400m. An enterprising soul could set up a bar and some sun loungers at each set of lights.
 

booze and cake

probably out cycling
Parliament Square is another classic example of ^ that, it takes an age to get around/across it now compared to before. See also Elephant & Castle roundabout, Hyde Park Corner and Trafalgar Square. I notice the other cycling accident hot-spot of Old St roundabout has some new cycling routing that had me totally confused the other day, but it was clearly still a work in progress.

London drivers are generally good, due to high cyclist exposure, there's literally hundreds of thousands of us everywhere, everyday, so they should be used to us by now^_^. Having said that I do see examples of terrible driving and riding everyday too, so we can't be complacent. Having just recently come back from Ireland I can fully commend their driving, very patient and only passing when safe to do so. Coming back to London was a bit of a reality check, I felt much more encroachment on personal space, but maybe that's an overcrowded city thing:laugh:, we can be a bunch of inpatient bar stewards though:whistle:
 

Ian H

I am an ancient randonneur, & I stop often for tea
Location
East Devon
Having ridden down the Edgware Road to Marylebone Station at the end of my weekend 400, then across to the Bayswater Road and along t o Ealing, I would concur. I don't cycle there as often as I used to, but seldom have a problem (though interestingly, my companion, less-used to London traffic, did get a little nervous at times).
 
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