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Is it safe to park your bike around Bankside?

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Thursday 12 October 2006 2.49pm
In a short survey conducted by Southwark Weekender seven out of ten people thought it was safe to park your bike around Bankside. What do you think?
Thursday 19 October 2006 6.36pm
As a representative of Southwark Cyclists who has been involved on cycle security committees incorporating Southwark Police and Southwark Council, I have some knowledge of cycle theft, at least in Southwark, and have personally lost two bikes in recent months. Frankly, it is not "safe" to leave your bicycle anywhere in London. In Southwark, bike theft is particularly bad in SE1 and areas along the River, although this is partly due to the relatively large number of bikes parked in these areas -- Tate Modern, Borough Market, London Bridge, Surrey Quays.

153 bikes were stolen in Southwark in a two-week period. In a 12-week period, the area around Tower Bridge Road had approximately 39 bicycle thefts, eight of which were from underground car parks or garages. 40% of bicycles stolen are said to be of low value, although I don't know exactly what that means. Most bikes were locked and secured, although there has been no analysis of the quality of locks used.

Two good quality locks are better than one ("Sold Secure" rates locks on a bronze, silver and gold basis), and you should attach your frame and wheels to an immovable object where the bike is visible to passers-by if you have to leave it in the open. Leaving a bike overnight in a public place is asking for trouble. A cable (wire) lock may be okay as a second lock, but is easily cut through.

Even keeping your bike in your garden shed, or on your balcony is no protection, unless it is locked to something solid and you use good quality locks.

Registering your bike (or any other property) on may help to get it back if it is stolen.
Tuesday 14 November 2006 8.58pm
Our bike was stolen from the car park under the building. There were 2 good locks. We also have a pincode gate onto Borough High Street.

The thief got in at 3 am - all visible on our expensive cctv system. A neighbour has had 2 stolen. And the police station is 30 metres away.

So, I would say it is not safe to park your locked bike behind a security gate, with infrared lighting, cctv and near the police station.

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