London to Canterbury trains, bikes and storing things

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Jerry Neuburger, May 1, 2003.

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  1. This group has really been helpful with my touring plans, I have a few more requests for
    information.

    My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be arriving
    at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like some local
    advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or leave them in
    their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at Heathrow since the
    3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand that we can catch a train
    from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury. Will they take assembled
    bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?

    Second question. Since we'll be in London relatively early in the day. If we unpack the bikes so we
    can ride them, is there a bike shop or some place close to Victoria Station that might store our
    bike bags for the month until we return. We'd be willing to pay something reasonable for the storage
    or mention them on our web page. If a bike shop, we'll probably do some last minute shopping anyway
    both on the way out and when we pick the bags up.
    --
    Jerry in Lodi, CA http://www.angelfire.com/folk/touringonbikes
     
    Tags:


  2. In message <[email protected]>, Jerry Neuburger
    <[email protected]> writes
    >This group has really been helpful with my touring plans, I have a few more requests for
    >information.
    >
    >My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    >arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like
    >some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or
    >leave them in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at
    >Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand that
    >we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury. Will
    >they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?
    >
    >Second question. Since we'll be in London relatively early in the day. If we unpack the bikes so we
    >can ride them, is there a bike shop or some place close to Victoria Station that might store our
    >bike bags for the month until we return. We'd be willing to pay something reasonable for the
    >storage or mention them on our web page. If a bike shop, we'll probably do some last minute
    >shopping anyway both on the way out and when we pick the bags up.

    There isn't a regular train from Heathrow to Victoria. London Underground (mass transit system)
    operates a service but the carriages are very small and bikes aren't carried. So you would have to
    take the bikes in bags.

    There is a train from Heathrow to London Paddington (Heathrow Express) and, according to the
    following link it does carry bikes. You would then have to ride from Paddington to Victoria. This
    isn't far, goes across Hyde Park and the main difficult intersection (Hyde Park Corner) could be
    avoided by pushing through the underpasses. However, getting used to riding on the left in central
    London in a state of jet lag may not be your cup of tea! http://makeashorterlink.com/?A21A12764 The
    link also suggests that you can leave stuff in left luggage at Heathrow although this would be
    expensive for the time you'll be here.

    In order to avoid cycling in London you might want to consider riding (or getting a cab) from
    Heathrow to Staines (7 miles) and getting a train from there to London Waterloo. Trains run directly
    from Waterloo East to Canterbury West. (Trains from Victoria run to Canterbury East with a change in
    Faversham.) Going to Waterloo looks like less hassle. Here's a list of cycle shops in the Staines
    area. http://cycle-n-sleep.co.uk/cycleshops/thames.htm.
    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
  3. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

    "Jerry Neuburger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    > arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like
    > some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or
    > leave them in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at
    > Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand that
    > we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury. Will
    > they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?

    If you're travelling by train from Heathrow to Victoria you will probably be using the Underground,
    or "tube" (pronounced "choob" by most Limies and "tyoob" by posh ones). Assembled bicycles are not
    allowed on the tube wherever it disappears underground so you should probably keep them in their
    bags until you get to Victoria. You will, however, be able to use the airport trollies for your bags
    almost as far as the station platform. To get to Victoria you will need to change trains, probably
    onto the Circle and District Lines at Gloucester Road or South Kensington. I'm sure someone who does
    that route a lot will chime in and let you know which is the easiest place to change when encumbered
    by awkward baggage.

    An alternative would be the Heathrow Express to Paddington which runs every 15 minutes and does
    allow up to 3 bicycles free of charge. However, this is more expensive than the tube and you still
    have to get from Paddington to Victoria, which probably means taking the Circle Line of the tube,
    and once again assembled bikes are not allowed.

    At Victoria you emerge from the tube and switch to the overground railway. Victoria Station has left
    luggage lockers between platforms 7 and 8, so you should be able to leave your bike bags there. If
    you don't like the look of these there is also a left luggage office at Victoria Coach (i.e. Bus)
    Station, which is just round the corner. There it's around 2 pounds per day per bag, but if you can
    put one inside the other it should be treated as one bag.

    You should be able to take your bikes on the train from Victoria to Canterbury without charge and
    without pre-booking, but possibly not at the busiest times, and not all trains have proper bike
    storage. The train company on that route is Connex, and their web site says:

    "A limited number of bicycles may be carried on all services, except on our busy weekday peak hour
    trains scheduled to arrive in London between 0700 and 0959, and those scheduled to depart London
    between 1600 and 1859. On our slam door trains there may be space in the guards van for bicycles to
    be carried even in peak hours, at the discretion of local staff."

    Enjoy your tour and take care when you're crossing the road on foot and when you start each day's
    ride. It can take a moment to remember that we ride and drive on the wrong side of the road!

    --
    Dave...
     
  4. Bryan

    Bryan New Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2003
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    Originally posted by Dave Kahn
    "Jerry Neuburger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...

    > My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    > arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like
    > some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or
    > leave them in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at
    > Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand that
    > we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury. Will
    > they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?

    If you're travelling by train from Heathrow to Victoria you will probably be using the Underground,
    or "tube" (pronounced "choob" by most Limies and "tyoob" by posh ones). Assembled bicycles are not
    allowed on the tube wherever it disappears underground so you should probably keep them in their
    bags until you get to Victoria. You will, however, be able to use the airport trollies for your bags
    almost as far as the station platform. To get to Victoria you will need to change trains, probably
    onto the Circle and District Lines at Gloucester Road or South Kensington. I'm sure someone who does
    that route a lot will chime in and let you know which is the easiest place to change when encumbered
    by awkward baggage.

    An alternative would be the Heathrow Express to Paddington which runs every 15 minutes and does
    allow up to 3 bicycles free of charge. However, this is more expensive than the tube and you still
    have to get from Paddington to Victoria, which probably means taking the Circle Line of the tube,
    and once again assembled bikes are not allowed.

    At Victoria you emerge from the tube and switch to the overground railway. Victoria Station has left
    luggage lockers between platforms 7 and 8, so you should be able to leave your bike bags there. If
    you don't like the look of these there is also a left luggage office at Victoria Coach (i.e. Bus)
    Station, which is just round the corner. There it's around 2 pounds per day per bag, but if you can
    put one inside the other it should be treated as one bag.

    You should be able to take your bikes on the train from Victoria to Canterbury without charge and
    without pre-booking, but possibly not at the busiest times, and not all trains have proper bike
    storage. The train company on that route is Connex, and their web site says:

    "A limited number of bicycles may be carried on all services, except on our busy weekday peak hour
    trains scheduled to arrive in London between 0700 and 0959, and those scheduled to depart London>
    between 1600 and 1859. On our slam door trains there may be space in the guards van for bicycles to
    >be carried even in peak hours, at the discretion of local staff."

    >Enjoy your tour and take care when you're crossing the road on foot and when you start each day's
    >ride. It can take a moment to remember that we ride and drive on the wrong side of the road!

    >--
    >Dave...

    You can take bikes on the tube but not between 7.30-9.30 and 16.00-19.00, also there are some line restictions, but you can take a bike on the Picadilly line between Hounslow West (2 stops from Heathrow so not that good) and Barons Court, and also anywhere on the Circle and District lines (see http://www.thetube.com/content/faq/bicycle.asp?exp=3 for more info)

    Your best bet maybe assemble bikes at Heathrow, Heathrow Express to Paddington, Circle line from Paddington to Victoria. If you go for the all tube option (cost £3.70 each) your best bet is to change at either Hammersmith or Barons Court form Picadilly line to District line as they are on the same platform (no stairrs/lifts)

    Sorry I've got no idea where you can store ythe bage cheaply/freely

    HTH

    Bryan
     
  5. From Heathrow you have four options:

    1) take the Heathrow Express overland train to Paddington. There is no overland train from Heathrow
    to Victoria. From Paddington, either get onto the tube system, or assemble the bikes and ride
    them, or get a taxi. Cost of Heathrow Express is about 15 pounds one-way, I think.
    2) take the tube (metro) into central London, and on to Victoria. Ticket cost will be about 4
    or 5 pounds.
    3) assemble and ride the bikes - it's a longish way into London and not a very pleasant ride, so
    would avoid this if possible.
    4) take a taxi cab (expensive, probably about 60 pounds to Victoria), but very convenient.

    I would transport the bikes in their bags - bikes are not allowed on the tube in central London (but
    I have had no problems with a bike in a bag), and trains are also problematic - if you get a nice
    guard, no problems, but the rules on carrying bikes differ from train company to train company and
    often from guard to guard! Regarding the bike bags, I'm afraid I don't know of any shops near
    Victoria, perhaps someone else can help you there.

    Enjoy your trip.

    Clive
     
  6. Michael MacClancy <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    > In order to avoid cycling in London you might want to consider riding (or getting a cab) from
    > Heathrow to Staines (7 miles) and getting a train from there to London Waterloo.

    Worth noting also that if using Charing Cross or Victoria stations to get to Canterbury, you can
    take your bike on the Circle Line from Paddington (change at Embankment for Charing Cross). LU only
    allow this on the sub-surface lines in Central London (Circle, District, Metropolitan, Hammersmith &
    City), and not on the deep-level tubes like the Northern, Piccadilly, Victoria, etc.

    > Trains run directly from Waterloo East to Canterbury West. (Trains from Victoria run to Canterbury
    > East with a change in Faversham.)

    The journey to West is usually faster, too, except for a few fast Victoria-East trains; you can go
    direct to East at other times, but it stops virtually everywhere en route, so it's better to change
    into/out of the fast Ramsgate trains at Faversham (easily done, all you have to do is walk across to
    the other face of the island platform in either direction). Trains to West station also serve
    Charing Cross and London Bridge, so take your pick as to which is your preferred London station on
    that route.

    David E. Belcher

    Dept. of Chemistry, University of York
     
  7. James Cheney

    James Cheney Guest

    ----- Original Message ----- From: "Clive van Hilten" <[email protected]> Subject: Re: London
    to Canterbury trains, bikes and storing things

    > 4) take a taxi cab (expensive, probably about 60 pounds to Victoria), but very convenient.

    If prebooking a non-airport taxi I think it would be possible to get all the way to Canterbury by
    taxi for £60.

    Jim
     
  8. In message <[email protected]>, James Cheney
    <[email protected]> writes
    >----- Original Message ----- From: "Clive van Hilten" <[email protected]> Subject: Re: London
    >to Canterbury trains, bikes and storing things
    >
    >> 4) take a taxi cab (expensive, probably about 60 pounds to Victoria), but very convenient.
    >
    >
    >
    >If prebooking a non-airport taxi I think it would be possible to get all the way to Canterbury by
    >taxi for £60.
    >
    >
    >
    >Jim
    >
    >

    Good point. I just rang one and he said £65. Here's a list of taxi companies in Canterbury.

    http://www.aroundcanterbury.co.uk/around.php?pa=133

    It'll probably be a few quid more in the opposite direction because of waiting time and parking. One
    problem may be that your bags are then in Canterbury?
    --
    Michael MacClancy
     
  9. John Hearns

    John Hearns Guest

    On Thu, 01 May 2003 03:37:59 +0000, Dave Kahn wrote:

    > "Jerry Neuburger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    >> My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    >> arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like
    >> some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or
    >> leave them in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at
    >> Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand
    >> that we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury.
    >> Will they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?

    I thought of coach journeys, but http://www.gobycoach.com says that coached go from Heathrow to
    London then London to Canterbury. Anybody know about putting bike bags in coach luggage holds -
    which are very large. Victoria Coach Station would certainly be an easier place to change with heavy
    luggage than a Tube journey.

    Also, it might prove worth it to get a local minicab firm in Canterbury send a people carrier
    (minivan) or estate car to meet you. Do a web search on (say) www.yell.com or yahoo.co.uk for taxi
    firms in Canterbury. Phone them, giving your flight number. Ask for a quote for the journey, and
    specify an estate car. Might be 50 pounds (I don't know) This will save you a lot of wear and tear
    wehn you are tired. The minicab driver will park his car in a Heathrow car park and wait for you,
    holding a sign. They normally check landing times, you you are OK if the flight lands late.

    This leaves you the problem of then finding a place to leave the bike bags in Canterbury.
     
  10. In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...

    > I thought of coach journeys, but http://www.gobycoach.com says that coached go from Heathrow to
    > London then London to Canterbury. Anybody know about putting bike bags in coach luggage holds -
    > which are very large.

    I have put unbagged bikes in coach luggage holds before now. It would of course be worth checking
    with the coach operator before hand that it was possible, perhaps getting in writing if it was.

    Colin
     
  11. [email protected] (Dave Kahn) wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    > Enjoy your tour and take care when you're crossing the road on foot and when you start each day's
    > ride. It can take a moment to remember that we ride and drive on the wrong side of the road!

    Or, to quote Michael Caine in The Italian Job; "Oh, and one more thing, just remember this. In this
    country they drive on the wrong side of the road..." ;-)

    David E. Belcher

    Dept. of Chemistry, University of York
     
  12. Jinx

    Jinx Guest

    "Jerry Neuburger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:[email protected]...
    > This group has really been helpful with my touring plans, I have a few
    more
    > requests for information.
    >
    > My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    > arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10
    AM.
    > We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should
    > we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or leave
    them
    > in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to
    assemble
    > them at Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I
    > understand that we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train
    > to Canterbury. Will they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there
    > be a fee?
    >
    > Second question. Since we'll be in London relatively early in the day. If
    we
    > unpack the bikes so we can ride them, is there a bike shop or some place close to Victoria Station
    > that might store our bike bags for the month
    until
    > we return. We'd be willing to pay something reasonable for the storage or mention them on our web
    > page. If a bike shop, we'll probably do some last minute shopping anyway both on the way out and
    > when we pick the bags up.
    > --
    > Jerry in Lodi, CA http://www.angelfire.com/folk/touringonbikes
    >
    >

    You may find the leaflet 'Canterbury Cycle Routes' from Kent County Council of interest:
    http://www.kent.gov.uk/sp/cycling/leaf-to-download.html

    train times can be looked up at the National Rail Network site: http://www.nationalrail.co.uk/

    you may also find the Public transport Information site at: http://www.pti.org.uk useful

    Kent County Council (KCC) has a list of bike shops in Kent at:
    http://www.kent.gov.uk/sp/cycling/bike-shops.html and it may be worth ringing around the Canterbury
    ones to see if any of them would be willing to store your bike bags. Or it may be worth contacting
    the KCC cycling officer at: [email protected] to see if he has any suggestions about storage
    facilities.

    The CTC (The National Cyclists Organisation) has information leaflets about transporting bikes by
    public transport, details at: http://www.ctc.org.uk/travel/infoTrav.aspx This is available to
    members but it would be worth emailing them to see if they make it available to overseas visitors.
    [email protected]

    hope some of that helps regards Malcolm
     
  13. Heathrow have a leaflet, I think, about getting in and out by bike, although whether BAA (British
    Airports Authority) have it on the web anywhere, I don't know.

    Somewhere I think there's a web site about taking your bike on 'planes, which also covers
    airport access.

    During the rush hour, you generally can't take your bike on local trains, or those section of the
    underground where it is permitted.

    Jeremy Parker
     
  14. Stephan Bird

    Stephan Bird Guest

    In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...

    > If you're travelling by train from Heathrow to Victoria you will probably be using the
    > Underground, or "tube" (pronounced "choob" by most Limies and "tyoob" by posh ones). Assembled
    > bicycles are not allowed on the tube wherever it disappears underground so you should probably
    > keep them in their bags until you get to Victoria. You will, however, be able to use the airport
    > trollies for your bags almost as far as the station platform. To get to Victoria you will need to
    > change trains, probably onto the Circle and District Lines at Gloucester Road or South Kensington.
    > I'm sure someone who does that route a lot will chime in and let you know which is the easiest
    > place to change when encumbered by awkward baggage.

    Probaby Hammersmith ('ammersmith ;) ). Where it's a simple lug across a platform - certainly seemed
    to be several doing this the morning I got back to the UK earlier this week, and a dim recollection
    of doing similar myself a few years ago.

    Stephan

    --
    Stephan Bird MChem(Hons) AMRSC [email protected]
     
  15. Dave Kahn

    Dave Kahn Guest

    Stephan Bird <[email protected]> wrote in message
    news:<[email protected]>...
    > In article <[email protected]>, [email protected] says...
    >
    > > To get to Victoria you will need to change trains, probably onto the Circle and District Lines
    > > at Gloucester Road or South Kensington. I'm sure someone who does that route a lot will chime in
    > > and let you know which is the easiest place to change when encumbered by awkward baggage.
    >
    > Probaby Hammersmith ('ammersmith ;) ).

    Or even 'ammasmiff. :)

    --
    Dave...
     
  16. Just Zis Guy

    Just Zis Guy Guest

    On 16 May 2003 05:49:33 -0700, [email protected] (Dave Kahn) wrote:

    >Or even 'ammasmiff. :)

    Absolutely. Yah.

    Guy
    ===
    ** WARNING ** This posting may contain traces of irony. http://www.chapmancentral.com (BT ADSL and
    dynamic DNS permitting)
    NOTE: BT Openworld have now blocked port 25 (without notice), so old mail addresses may no longer
    work. Apologies.
     
  17. On 1 May 2003 03:37:59 -0700, contributor Dave Kahn had scribed:
    > An alternative would be the Heathrow Express to Paddington which runs every 15 minutes and does
    > allow up to 3 bicycles free of charge. However, this is more expensive than the tube and you still
    > have to get from Paddington to Victoria, which probably means taking the Circle Line of the tube,
    > and once again assembled bikes are not allowed.
    >

    Since the Circle Line is 'cut'n'cover', therefore a subsurface line rather than a deep level line -
    assembled bicycles ARE permitted on the entire line, similarly District, Hammersmith & City and
    Metropolitan Lines.

    Gary

    --

    The email address is for newsgroups purposes only and therefore unlikely to be read.

    For contact via email use my real name with an underscore separator at the domain of CompuServe.
     
  18. John Hearns

    John Hearns Guest

    On Thu, 01 May 2003 03:37:59 +0000, Dave Kahn wrote:

    > "Jerry Neuburger" <[email protected]> wrote in message
    > news:<[email protected]>...
    >
    >> My wife and I will be coming to the UK to do a one month tour of southern England. We'll be
    >> arriving at Heathrow on Sunday, June 28th at about 10 AM. We'll have our bikes in bags. I'd like
    >> some local advise on getting to Canterbury by train. Should we assemble our bikes at Heathrow or
    >> leave them in their bags and haul them to Canterbury. I would really prefer to assemble them at
    >> Heathrow since the 3'x4' bags weigh about 35 pounds each and don't carry easily. I understand
    >> that we can catch a train from Heathrow to Victoria Station and then another train to Canterbury.
    >> Will they take assembled bikes on the trains? If so, which trains? Will there be a fee?

    I thought of coach journeys, but http://www.gobycoach.com says that coached go from Heathrow to
    London then London to Canterbury. Anybody know about putting bike bags in coach luggage holds -
    which are very large. Victoria Coach Station would certainly be an easier place to change with heavy
    luggage than a Tube journey.

    Also, it might prove worth it to get a local minicab firm in Canterbury send a people carrier
    (minivan) or estate car to meet you. Do a web search on (say) www.yell.com or yahoo.co.uk for taxi
    firms in Canterbury. Phone them, giving your flight number. Ask for a quote for the journey, and
    specify an estate car. Might be 50 pounds (I don't know) This will save you a lot of wear and tear
    wehn you are tired. The minicab driver will park his car in a Heathrow car park and wait for you,
    holding a sign. They normally check landing times, you you are OK if the flight lands late.

    This leaves you the problem of then finding a place to leave the bike bags in Canterbury.
     
  19. From Victoria to Canterbury there's a mix of the old slam door trains with guards vans (great for
    bikes) and the new style ones (bad for bikes). Hopefully they'll be able to tell you when a slam
    door is leaving. The coach from Victoria Coach Station to Canterbury has been mostly empty when I've
    been on it (seats together and room for bikes underneath the coach), and the journey isn't too bad
    (once it's shunted its way out of London). The coach is probably your safest bet, as they'll be less
    hassle finding a place for your bikes.
     
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