‘Boris’ bikes at Exmouth train station?

Public ‘Boris bikes’ at Exmouth station could increase cycle-use, free up space, discourage car travel and boost local business, says the chairman of the local rail users’ group.

Lympstone’s Tony Day, chairman of the Avocet Line Rail Users’ Group, said public cycle sharing schemes, like ‘Boris Bikes’ championed by London’s mayor, could soon be a feature of stations between Exmouth and Exeter.

Public cycle sharing schemes comprise of a number of fixed docking stations from which cycles can be obtained on a hire basis and then returned to any other docking station in the scheme.

A scheme covering Exmouth, Exeter and the rail route between would open up many opportunities for cyclists – enabling people to leave cars at home.

He also suggested that cycle maintenance and logistics – ensuring that the right numbers of bikes were at the right stations - could be sub-contracted to local bike shops.

He said: “Cycling is a green and healthy way to travel, but bikes on busy trains don’t mix well with other passengers – so we would support measures that increase the numbers of cyclists on trains, but reduce the numbers of bikes.

“The idea has been put to First Great Western, which has expressed interest and could be prepared to make space available. An approach has now been made to Devon County Council.”