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'Novelty wears off' for Boris Johnson's bike hire scheme

17 January 12 16:00
The mayor's bike hire scheme was launched in 2010
By Tom Edwards
Transport correspondent, London

A recent internal Transport for London report from September shows how the "novelty has worn off" for some users of Boris Johnson's bike hire scheme.

You can see some of the other highlights from the report here.

The crux of the problem seems to have been the members' keys, the call centre and yet again finding a docking station.

In fact the bike hire scheme in September polls lower in terms of satisfaction than any other form of transport in London.

The report said that in November 27 docking stations had no bikes in them for between six and eight hours a day

And it also says that most users are male (77%) and a quarter of them live outside the capital.

The mayor's office says a more recent survey of members from December shows they've corrected some of those problems and satisfaction has gone back up.

That later report from TfL is here.

Its ratings are still lower than everything else apart from riding your own bike in London.

The contractor Serco has also adopted a new way of distributing the bikes.

They're now using what they call a "village concept".

So bikes are redistributed amongst small clusters of docking stations.

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