The bikes on trains campaign

Train operators have steadily reduced capacity as loco-hauled services incorporating a traditional brake van are replaced by units, many of which have space for only two bikes, while paying lip service to the concept of integrated transport. There is a real demand for bike space on the North Wales Coast line from tourists and locals. Holyhead is the main port for Ireland, a popular destination for cyclists, and at the end of the Welsh National Cycle Route, part of the National Cycle Network. Yet when it was time to replace the Mark 1 loco-hauled sets, the operator at that time, first North Western, specified class 175 units with a capacity of only two cycles.

The position appears to have stabilized now that very few loco-hauled services remain, most operators providing a token two spaces on each new unit, though Virgin's new Voyagers can take four.

National Rail list information for each operator - some of whom include advice on taking your bike on their trains.

If lack of capacity is making it difficult for you to take your bike by train, make your voice heard.

Write to the train operator

You'll find all the addresses at the National Rail site

If you're not satisfied with the reply...

Write to the Rail Passengers Committee

Rail Passengers Committee for Wales
St David's House
East Wing
Wood Street
Cardiff CF1 1ES
Fax: 029 2022 3992

Rail Passengers Committee for Scotland
Room 514
Corunna House
29 Cadogan Street
Glasgow G2 7AB
Fax: 0141 221 3393

Rail Passengers Committee for Eastern England
The Secretary
Stuart House
City Road
Peterborough PE1 1QF
Fax: 01733 891286

London Regional Passengers' Committee
Clements House
14-18 Gresham Street
London EC2V 7PR
Fax: 020 7505 9003

Rail Passengers Committee for the Midlands
6th floor
The McClaren Building
35 Dale End
Birmingham B4 7LN
Fax: 0121 236 6945

Rail Passengers Committee for North Eastern England
Hilary House
16 St Saviour's Place
York YO1 2PL
Fax: 01904 643026

Rail Passengers Committee for Southern England
3rd Floor
Centric House
390/391 Strand
London WC2R 0LT
Fax: 020 7240 8923

Rail Passengers Committee for North Western England
Boulton House
17-21 Chorlton Street
Manchester M1 3HY
Fax: 0161 236 1476

Rail Passengers Committee for Western England
10th Floor
Tower House
Fairfax Street
Bristol BS1 3BN
Fax: 0117 929 4140

Write to your MP

House of Commons
London SW1A 0AA

Let the Cyclists Touring Club know

Please send a copy of your complaint to Dave Holladay at the CTC. Dave is particularly interested in hearing from people inconvenienced by the withdrawal of online cycle booking facilities from Virgin's Trainline. This was the only online booking agency with such a facility and it saved me a trip to the station and the embarrassment of delaying other passengers while I made complex advance reservations.

The CTC is the UK's national cycling organisation - we are members.

CTC Cymru has a very useful site Cycling in North Wales

Other sources

You could try getting your local newspaper interested in running a story.

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