Who Rides London?

The survey analysis has been published.

Who Rides London – A survey of motorcyclists who use PTWs to ride to work in London – June 2018 pdf – 1.8mb

London – Launching a survey to look carefully at – Who Rides London?

When a suggested charge of £12.50 per day for older (than the Euro 3 standard) motorcycles/scooters/mopeds traveling in a proposed Ultra Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) in London, followed by a consultation regarding this daily charge, surfaced about a year ago, the motorcycling community started raising concerns and has been in turmoil since then, regarding this proposed ULEZ charge in London.

Some rider groups have suggested that the majority of the owners of these “older” motorcycles/scooters cannot afford newer models and will be forced to use public transport.

Others point out that whatever the rider’s circumstances are, the charges are discriminatory, unfair and unwarranted.

The motorcycling community has pointed out that these charges should not be introduced for a mode of transport that has the benefits of reducing congestion and which in terms of pollution, has a very small impact, especially compared to other private and public forms of transport.

It is now time to revisit the status of London riders and to look carefully at Who Rides London. The survey Who Rides London? aims to identify motorcycle, scooter and moped riders who typically commute to work or study in London, to determine the typical riders’ profile and the type of bikes/scooters/mopeds travelling in these areas.

The results will hopefully offer riders the opportunity to put forward a case for continued access to all areas in London for all powered two wheelers (PTWs) and to highlight the importance that this form of transport offers.


It is important for riders to understand a few basic facts – which are:

  • The charges refer to motorcycles, scooters and mopeds which are older than the Euro 3 standard (2006/2007), the reason is that motorcycles older than this standard, pollute considerably in comparison. According to ACEM (the European Motorcycle Manufacturers’ Association), there has been a 94% reduction of carbon monoxide and hydrocarbon emissions, and a 50 % reduction of nitrogen emissions since the introduction of Euro standards in 1999. See here for more details: Riding in a 21st century environment – The motorcycle industry’s commitment to the environment
  • The introduction of the ULEZ zones is not just in London, in fact these zones are being, or have been introduced in major capital cities throughout Europe, indeed, hundreds of European cities already have vehicle entry regulations, depending on vehicle emission standards, payment or vehicle type. Some cities ban certain vehicles, others allow entry of vehicles in LEZs during certain periods during the day/night, while others such as London, charge. For more details see here: urbanaccessregulations.eu
  • The last study to profile the typical London rider was done by Transport for London through the University of Leeds back in 2004. The study using postcode data, was divided into 112 motorcyclists who resided in Greater London and 867 who lived elsewhere. The data suggested that London motorcyclists are more likely to be younger and single, with full-time jobs earning a higher income. They are more likely to own machines under 250cc, compared to the rest of the sample, and much more likely to own scooters. See here: Differences Between London Motorcyclists And Those From The Rest Of The UK That study is now 14 years old and times change. Also the sample size was limited to only 112 riders.

This study is being carried out by Dr Elaine Hardy, an independent research analyst with considerable experience of motorcycle related research topics, as well as joint contributor to the motorcycle blog Motorcycle Minds. She has no affiliation to any rider group or organisation or authority.

Any results will be based on the evidence provided by riders in the survey and will be published online, on Twitter and Facebook for all to access.

The survey analysis has been published.

Who Rides London – A survey of motorcyclists who use PTWs to ride to work in London – June 2018 pdf – 1.8mb

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  1. Investigative Research Northern Ireland says

    Thanks to all those who are supporting the survey and promoting it on their websites and social media these include the following, not forgetting those individual riders on social media who have linked and shared the survey.

    The survey is being mainly promoted on Motorcycle Minds where I am a joint contributor to the motorcycle blog.

    The British Motorcyclists Federation (BMF) – was the first rider organisation and group to help with the survey – If you ever ride in London, your contribution could be a vital part of the results, and make a difference to how motorcycles can be used in London – Who Rides London? – survey

    Thanks to the Motorcycle Theft Protest Community for linking to the survey and posting on their closed group page The UK Motorcycle Theft Protest

    Visordown – for highlighting the Who Rides London? survey. Original SourceVisordown – Who rides London? Survey to profile two-wheeler use in the capital

    Riders Digest – who say – “If you ride a bike – and in particular if you ride one in London – please take the time out to complete this Right To Ride survey.

    Even if you don’t ride in London and have no intention of doing so, you must be aware that when there’s a new initiative in one area, which provides the authority with a ‘revenue stream’, then you can be pretty confident that others will be quick to follow suit.”

    Riders DigestOn Facebook

    Survival Skills – *** NEWS *** Help out with a survey

    If you ride in London, you’ll no doubt have heard about the proposals to include motorcycles in the ‘ultra-low emissions’ scheme which is set to come into force in the not-too-distant future.

    What that would mean is that any bike that isn’t compliant with current emissions standards will have to pay the same ‘admission charge’ to the ULEZ as any other vehicle. For example both my 52 plate Hornet and my modern classic CB250RSA would be subject to the charge.

    What doesn’t seem to be available is any data on just how many older machines are actually in use in London.

    The lack of solid information is the reason for this survey. If you live, work or simply ride across central London, take a moment to fill it out. You’ll be helping provide evidence that may help to get this ruling overturned.

    Survival SkillsOn Facebook

    Survey asks ‘Who Rides London?’ – London Road Safety Council

    More thanks – this time to the London Road Safety Council.

    The ULEZ standards are: Euro 3 for motorcycles, mopeds, motorised tricycles and quadricycles (L category).

    Motorcycling stakeholders are arguing that these charges should not be introduced for a mode of transport which reduces congestion and has a very small impact on pollution compared to other forms of transport.

    Full ArticleWho Rides London?’ – London Road Safety Council

    Survey asks ‘Who Rides London?’ – 2WheelsLondon.com

    Even more thanks this time to 2WheelsLondon.com for publicising the survey.

    Initial findings

    One of the main issues highlighted to date by respondents is the important role PTWs can play in getting to work without wasting ‘hours on public transport’. In one case, a nurse on the night shift said she has a choice of three buses taking two and half hours, or a 20 minute ride.

    Fear of having their PTW stolen leads to a preference among riders to use older machines. In 2016, 125,200 bikes/ scooters/mopeds were registered in London – and 11% of these were stolen in the same year.

    Riders being excluded from using bus lanes in some boroughs has been highlighted as a safety issue by some respondents.

    Another concern is that Cycle Superhighways are leading to narrower roads, giving riders have less room to manoeuvre while trying to filter in heavy traffic.

    Full ArticleSurvey asks ‘Who Rides London?’ – 2WheelsLondon.com

    Motorcycle Minds – We are very grateful because the feedback – so far – has been extremely helpful and positive. We are also grateful to our friends and supporters for their faith of our work and commitment.

    At the end of the survey – we will publish the results and our objective is to present facts and opinions to ensure that motorcycling has a positive role in London transport. Thanks to everybody for your support.

    Thank you.

    Trevor and Elaine

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