Riding with Patrick Field, legendary London cyclist, thinker and writer, on a leisurely route east from Hackney along the top of a giant Victorian sewerage outflow pipe towards the River Thames. We take in ancient trading routes, cross the River Lea and pass through land that will be home to the London Olympics in 2012. We discuss the ethos of cycling as travel and Patrick’s hopes for returning to an age of pre-industrial idleness… (part two follows next week).
In this last show of the current season we’re getting technical, with a visit to the Brompton factory. Bromptons are the best all round folding bicycles in the world and the invention of Andrew Ritchie, who started making them in his flat more than 25 years ago. They are still made in west London – in fact the only form of transportation still manufactured in the capital. Matt Tempest is awed by the brazing, bending and bashing that goes into a Brompton. Plus the demystification of wheelbuilding with Ian McCormick.
The Bike Show will be back with the falling of autumn leaves.
This week’s show is a Tour De France special recorded at the Charles Lamb pub in north London. The Charles Lamb is one of the few places in London that is showing Le Tour this year. I am joined by Therese Bjorn, a former European Bicycle Messenger Champion and Matt Seaton, cycling correspondent at The Guardian newspaper. We watch the big Pyrenean stage of this year’s Tour, which features the legendary Col Du Tourmalet. Insightful commentary is interspersed with food, drinks and cheery French chanson on the 45s.
Riding with London-based desiger and artist Julia Lohmann. We begin at the Velorution bike shop in the West End, where Julia’s giant backlit illustration of animal-bicycle metamophosis is on display. We ride down through the park via the Serpentine Gallery to her studio in Fulham and then south over Wandsworth Bridge and via Wandsworth Prison to Tooting to see one of her cowbenches – lifesize cow-shaped benches upholstered in a single cowhide – and to talk about her current project involving a sculpture of a tricycle in Shanghai. We talk about design, cycling, creativity and much more along the way.
This week’s show has an extreme flavour. Kieron Yates visits Sheldon Brown for advice on fixed gear touring and Alex Murray tells us about his preparations for taking on this year’s Etape Du Tour. Plus Dominic Gabellini on the new Rapha-Condor cycle racing team and a 43 inch bunnyhop by Rich Johnson, Britain’s leading trick/stunt rider.
This year’s Bike Week coincides with the London Architecture Biennale, which has got a lot of cyclists thinking about architecture and a lot of architects thinking about cycling. At the launch of the Reinventing The Bike Shed exhibition, I speak with organisers Adam Thorpe of Bikeoff and Stephanie Laslett of Feilden Clegg Bradley and Associates about how the exhibition came about and what’s on show.
The show also spotlights the Christiania Bike from Denmark, in conversation with its creators Lars Engstrom and Annie Lerche and Andrea Casalotti of Velorution, the bike shop on a mission to bring these fantastic multipurpose workhorse tricycles to the streets of London.
And a quick heads-up for the ‘Midsummer Madness’ summer solstice bike ride, on the night of Tuesday 20st June, through the night up to the top of Primrose Hill for the sunrise and down to the Globe Theatre for breakfast on Wednesday morning. All with the redoubtable Barry Mason of Southwark Cyclists.