Train companies have released details of their cycle carriage policy for the period of 5-7 July 2014 when the Tour de France is in England.
Operators have worked closely with organisers of The Tour to ensure that the race runs smoothly and spectators can access the race route using the railway. Many train companies will be running extra services or adding additional carriages to carry more passengers. Information about long distance services will be available from today and details of local trains will be available in mid-May.
The first stage of The Tour will start in Leeds and end in Harrogate on 5 July. The second stage will then begin in York and end in Sheffield on 6 July, and head south for a stage on 7 July which begins in Cambridge and ends in London. Train operators are expecting services to be busy during this period with the number of travellers boosted not only by the Tour itself but also by local road closures.
Between 5-7 July, normal cycle carriage policies will apply but passengers are being advised to avoid taking bikes on trains as high demand may mean longer waits for passengers with bikes as spaces are limited. Unless passengers have reserved space for their bike, an option available mainly with intercity operators, they are being advised to allow extra time to make their journey as they may not be able to board their planned train with a bicycle.
Conrad Haigh, head of integrated transport at the Association of Train Operating Companies, said:
“The Tour de France coming to Britain is a great occasion and train operators have worked hard with the organisers to ensure that as many people as possible can get to the event by train. Operators will keep their usual cycle carriage policies in place but passengers need to be aware that the demand for space will be much higher.
“As well as people who normally travel, more will be using the train to avoid road closures and there will be thousands of Tour spectators so many services will be very busy. Cyclists are being asked to take a sensible approach and avoid bringing a bike on any train that might be busier than usual because of the Tour but, if it’s unavoidable, they should allow extra time to make their journey.”
Notes to editors
For the most up-to-date details of cycle carriage information on specific trains and journeys people should check their train operator’s website. Passengers can also download the free National Rail Enquiries (NRE) mobile app which can provide details of specific cycle-rail journeys.
The NRE app is available for iPhone and Android devices and can be downloaded free from Google Play or iTunes. It includes information such as:
* cycling facilities at stations,
* cycles carriage rules specific to your rail journey,
* an indication of the level of cycle spaces on specific trains, and
* whether cycle reservations are available
For more details of the Tour de France stages in England or how it may affect journeys please visit: http://letour.yorkshire.com/