Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Metro's Bike Trial Boost for Cyclists

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Metro's Bike Trial Boost for Cyclists

Article excerpt

Byline: Emma Duggan Reporter

CYCLISTS will be able to take their bikes on the Metro system for the first time as part of plans unveiled by Nexus.

As part of a six-month trial, starting on Monday, cyclists will be allowed to carry normal bikes onboard between 10am and 3pm.

The trial will only permit bikes on a limited section of the Metro line, initially between Callerton Parkway and Jesmond. Paul Walker, customer service director at DB Regio, which operates the Metro on behalf of Nexus, said: "It is important we conduct this trial to see what the impact is of allowing all bikes on Metro for the first time.

"We know this is an issue passengers can have very different and strong views on, so we are asking the question with a trial in one area when Metro is less busy.

"Cycling is a popular activity with 3.1 million people riding a bike each month in the UK. We want to support cyclists as ' much as we can here in Tyne and Wear."

The trial will test whether there is scope for all bikes to be successfully transported on board, and to help plans now in development for a new fleet of trains.

The Metro cars currently in use are more than 30 years old and were not designed to carry bicycles - at present, only folding bikes are permitted on the trains.

During the trial, just one will be permitted per carriage and passengers must remain with their bike throughout their journey.

Newcastle City Council is currently trying to transform the city into an area 'fit for cycling.'.

The Metro move was welcomed by Katja Leyendecker, chair of Newcastle Cycling Campaign.

"It's absolutely fantastic this is finally happening. We've been campaigning for this for a very long time," she said.

"If you look at cities across Europe, bikes on public transport is commonplace, and we've been stressing how possible it is here too. …

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