If you've been in London recently you'll know that it's damn hot, and it's been that way for a while. It's the kind of heat that makes it a bit of a nightmare to go on any public transport that doesn't have air conditioning - which is most of it. But rather than jumping on the Bakerloo Line or a Roastmaster to boil in your own juices, you could grab yourself one of the Santander Bikes. Assuming there are any left.
According to TfL the recent trend of nice weather has led to record-breaking numbers of people using Boris Bikes, much to the frustration of Giz UK Editor James O'Malley who was forced to get on the Central Line because there were none left. TfL says that 1.2 million people borrowed a bike in June, with a slightly less impressive 1.1 million in May. Cycle Superhighways on Blackfriars Bridge and Victoria Embankment also saw new records set, with 1.2 million people using CS3 and CS6 last month.
TfL claims that people are taking advantage of the hot weather to go ad explore London by bike, and while that may be true it also seems likely that people are trying to avoid the hotter methods of public transport. After all there's no breeze in the Underground, not after you get on a train anyway, and even at quieter periods the carriages are packed with people. Cycling seems like a much more pleasant alternative, even if you have to dodge any terrible drivers that come your way.
TfL met the increased demand by offering additional bikes in parks, and by launching a new trial that offers more bikes during at peak times. [ITS International]