Tandems & First Scotrail


New Member
Suzhou, China
Probably very difficult - Scotrail mostly have 2-3 car diesel units with a small bike rack that can take 3 regular sized bikes, so a tandem won't fit. If you're route is served by East Coast or Virgin, you'll have more luck as they have larger luggage compartments which can carry a tandem.


Cycling is fun ...
This web page has all the details, not good news I am afraid.

"What about Cycle Reservations?
Space to carry cycles is often limited and advance reservations are compulsory on some services. Passengers should check before travelling. Cycle reservations can be made when booking your ticket(s) on 08457 55 00 33.
Tandems, tricycles, cycle trailers, motorcycles, motor-scooters, mopeds or any other mechanically driven vehicle (except mechanically driven wheelchairs and light travel scooters) cannot be carried on any ScotRail service. "

This page has some interesting but very brief snippets on carrying bikes on all the different GB train companies, proper details (including info on tandems) don't seen to be available from a single place.

As Eddiethelaowai says, it may be worth checking other companies, provided they go where you want to go!

Good luck, let us know what you find, it may be useful for others!

Cheers Eddie & Telemark, much appreciated.
I have contacted Customer Relations to see if they have any flexibility. I hope I'm not forced to use the van each time we want to travel further afield - and it would restrict us to loops or there-and-back rides unless we rope in another driver.
Not a bit of flexibility. Only have a tandem because the stoker is disabled. Am wondering if the disabled discrimination act would require them to carry a tandem in this instance. A healthy person can use a train to reach a trail / route / start off point with a bike or to get home from a ride - a disabled person can't.

Has anyone else faced this as an obstruction to giving a disabled person a chance to exercise their right to exercise? Is it worth contacting CTC? (I am a member... ...of CTC).
Regrettably, the problem with carrying tandems on our services is that they take up more space than conventional bikes. The majority of our rolling stock does not have a space for cycles which is large and completely segregated from the passenger accommodation.

This is in contrast to other long distance operators whose trains still have a traditional "guards van" at one or both ends of the train, where it might be more practical to accept tandems without causing an obstruction in the passenger accommodation.

We will explore the design brief for our rolling stock to see if it is possible to accommodate additional cycles. However, as you can appreciate, we have to comply with a number of access and safety issues as well as trying to maximise the seating space on those services that are already over-subscribed at peak times.

Shame that they can't use rolling stock with space, off peak, subject to notice to allow fair access for all. And while we're in the minority in terms of money giving, it doesn't mean we have subjugated our rights.


New Member
Beaching is to blame.

It might be worth looking into getting a folding system put on, I know there are some folding tandems around.

But kick up a fuss, squeaky wheels get more attention...


Liverpool, UK
I've jsut contacted London Midland about taking our tandem on the Class 350 Desiro units and recieved the following reply:
Dear Mr. Wilson

Thank you for your e-mail.

Unfortunately, London Midland's policy is that we do not allow Tandum
bicycles on our trains. I regret this is not the answer you were looking
for but would like to thank you for you kind comments regarding the
helpfulness of our conductors.

Yours sincerely,
Customer Relations Advisor
Now firstly, the lady spelt 'tandem' incorrectly, so maybe I should assume that my tandem is fine to take on board :tongue:.
Secondly, does anybody else agree with me that at least one tandem would fit quite comfortably in the space opposite the 'round' toilets on the Class 350's?



It's a bit more complicated than that...
S&S couplings are your solution. It makes it easy to dismantle the tandem to fit in the back of a car, or into bags. We've taken the tandem past the very stern staff at Inverness on the Thurso line, as "large luggage" - packed into a couple of custom-made (but not expensive) bags.
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