East London Borough hosts second of London's three events this year, final one in Central London in September...

The London Borough of Barking and Dagenham has today hosted the second of the capital’s three Mayor of London’s Sky Ride events of 2011, with 7,500 people taking to the streets of East London alongside Team Sky’s Kjell Carlström and Serge Pauwels and many others looking on and enjoying the car-free streets.

Sky Ride Ambassador, TV personality Jeff Brazier, said: "It’s been a fantastic day here at The Mayor of London’s Sky Ride Barking and Dagenham, with people of all ages getting back on their bikes and enjoying cycling around their local area on traffic free streets.

“I just hope that everyone who has taken part today will be inspired to start cycling more regularly and continue to have fun on two wheels. And don’t forget we want you to tell us about your Perfect Hill to cycle down so make sure you nominate yours at goskyride.com"

Highlights of the day included Go Ride racing to give under-16s a taste of bike racing, music provided by buskers, and a ‘Keep Cycling Zone’ offering advice to those looking to return to cycling, or increase the amount of riding they are doing.

Daniel Ritterband, The Mayor of London's Director of 2012 Communications, added: "London's true spirit shone through in Barking and Dagenham today and the strong sense of community has been overwhelming. What's more, thousands of us have rediscovered the fun of exploring London on two wheels and will be taking the first opportunity to get cycling again very soon."

Barking and Dagenham is one of 13 London boroughs with biking borough status, and Council Leader and Cabinet Member for Children and Education, Cllr Rocky Gill, commented: "I am thrilled so many people had the opportunity to cycle in a traffic free Barking and Dagenham and enjoy some of the many wonderful parks and green spaces our borough has to offer.

“Cycling is a fantastic way to get around and I hope the event will have enthused more of our residents to take up the activity and explore Barking and Dagenham further."

The final Mayor of London Sky Ride of 2011 will be held in Central London on 4 September. Full details are available here.

Born in Scotland, Simon moved to London aged seven and now lives in the Oxfordshire Cotswolds with his miniature schnauzer, Elodie. He fell in love with cycling one Saturday morning in 1994 while living in Italy when Milan-San Remo went past his front door. A daily cycle commuter in London back before riding to work started to boom, he's been news editor at road.cc since 2009. Handily for work, he speaks French and Italian. He doesn't get to ride his Colnago as often as he'd like, and freely admits he's much more adept at cooking than fettling with bikes.