05 April 2009

Tate Modern goes off the railings (and a bike off its trolley)

Hot news from Tate Modern. I discussed their bike parking recently: how everyone locks their bikes to the railings outside the entrance, instead of the nice sheltered bike shed just a few metres away.

Well, not any longer. We dropped in there today to use the toilets, between the Chocolate Festival on the South Bank, and important drinking business at the excellent Pembury Arms in Hackney.

And Tate Modern's bike parking landscape has changed. Signs have been cable-tied to the railings saying 'Bicycles left attached to these railings will be removed. Please use bicycle racks provided.'

A friendly and pleasant Tate security person explained that this is a permanent change in policy, following (she said) the visit of 'some important people... the president...' in midweek. ('The president'? St Barack didn't drop in amid the G20 shenanigans, did he?)

Evidently Tate Mod was worried that these important people might think all these bikes were spoiling the external appearance of the squat, ugly, brick eyesore.

Well, at least they've got a decent bike shed. And, talking about the South Bank, we spotted this curious bicycle construction (right) parked just by said Chocolate Festival. (BP says it's been there regularly.)

The front wheel has been replaced by a shopping trolley, which gives you a fantastic amount of space to store vital supplies such as picnic fodder, bottles of wine, dogs etc, and we approve strongly. Sadly, by the look of the back wheel, it isn't in daily use.


  1. Bought a road bike in Kent. Cycling home to Cambridge. Locked it on the railings above the enterance to the Turbine hall. Went to the 1010 event. Got back and it had been removed. Not by the staff.

  2. How to make a shopping trolley bike! (cornering would be interesting...)