Hi Londoners,

I am considering universities, and very tempted by KCL, and love the idea of living in a proper city at last. However, I still want to be able to race, and more importantly train, as I would do living in Guildford and being 3 mins from country lanes.

Where do all you racers train, whilst living in Central London?
Does one have to ride out of town before finding clear road to open up on, or is the traffic not as bad always as one imagines and can you train sensibly without stopping every ten minutes but closer to home?

I'd hate to have to choose between riding or city living...

Thanks  1


sergius [544 posts] 4 years ago

Funny that, I went to KCL as well.

You probably want to separate the university piece from the cycling if I'm honest. Assuming you stay in halls, none of the halls have any decent riding nearby. You can ride 15 miles south and be in Surrey with some great riding, but it's not near.

For me, I'd enjoy the university piece first of all. You can get a train to some good cycling spots very easily. Zone 5 south London really isn't that far and there's great cycling near me.

the1hitman [12 posts] 4 years ago

I am the president of the KCL Bike Club so I think you should definitely come to King's! You're right though that there isn't much space centrally but Richmond Park is only 45mins or so from all the halls. You can also get outside the M25 to Leatherhead in less than 1H30 and there aren't too many traffic lights on the way (or the train is very simple). As well as that there is some countryside within the M25 around Bromley so you don't have to go too far to find some decent cycling roads.

OldRidgeback [2914 posts] 4 years ago

In London you've some pretty good choices. As Hitman says, Richmond Park is easy to get to and has some really nice bits of road, though I'm not sure where things are with regard to the speed limits that were being imposed there.

Herne Hill Velodrome is the second oldest velodrome in Europe and the only one of the 1948 Olympic Venues still in use. It's increasingly popular at the weekend but is definitely worth riding on. There's also the Olympic Park, though I've yet to ride there myself. For weekend training, Cyclopark at Gravesend is just a short train journey out of town and is an excellent venue with road, MTB and BMX tracks.

I live in London but work in Kent just close to the M25, so I know that area pretty well. There are plenty of really good country lanes in Kent just past Bromley. It's not far out from London and you could ride there or take the train.

KCL is a good university, but that's a separate issue.

arfa [859 posts] 4 years ago

Richmond park is fine early or late doors but in between can be very busy and you can encounter some proper numpty riding at busy times. If you're living in Guildford you are very close to the surrey hills and I'd recommend Pitch, Holmbury and Leith hills in particular for some quiet lanes with some good hills for leg strengthening. In a nutshell, lots of choice