The bicycle library

The bicycle library double decker bus

Inside a converted double decker bus in East London resides the Bicycle Library. From the bus you can borrow one of seven different types of bikes. These are:

  • Folding
  • MiniVelo
  • FixGearSingleSpeed (FGSS)
  • LadiesCoaster
  • MensCoaster
  • Cargo
  • Electric

You can then either test this bike out around the circuit or, with a deposit, ride it away for further testing to see if it suits you.

On hand at the scene is also a team of “librarians” that can advise you on your cycling needs. If you are satisfied with the bike then they can help you order it from the manufacturer.

The bus, a Leyland Olympian, was sourced from Milton Keynes. It was then converted into the bicycle library. Upstairs is a seating area with cycling books.

The borrow a bike and if you like it buy it concept isn’t particularly novel (companies such as Foffa Bikes do it) but I have to praise the ingenuity of setting up shop inside a double decker bus. Can’t wait to go check it out for myself!

Image source: Inhabitat | Lots more pictures on the Help my chain came off blog.

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As seen on The Guardian, BBC and The Independent.

10 Responses to The bicycle library

  1. Phil 08/08/2011 at 10:46 am #

    Hey, what a great idea! Please, Andreas, do not forget to tell us your impressions when you have visited The Bicycle Library.

  2. Adam Edwards 08/08/2011 at 12:52 pm #

    I’m begining to think I work in the wrong library. The only bike inside ours (Middlexsex University) is usually my Brompton folded up by my desk!

    Cheers

    Adam

  3. JohnM 08/08/2011 at 4:43 pm #

    For anyone having a look at the weekend that hasn’t been down that neck of the woods before, be sure to pop around the corner to check out Broadway Market.

  4. Ed 12/08/2011 at 10:25 am #

    Another reason to go is that the Lucky Chip burger van is parked next to it. They do banging burgers.

  5. Denir 24/08/2011 at 7:32 pm #

    Andreas,
    Here was the first place I read about this “bicycle library”. Your post inspired me and I wrote about it in my blog, translating your post and others into Portuguese.
    The Bicycle library is such a great idea! Congratulations for the guys behind it.
    And your blog’s always an amazing news source!

    Regards,
    from Brazil

    • Andreas 25/08/2011 at 9:15 am #

      I can’t claim that I was the first to discover it but I’m pleased to see the idea is spreading around the internet and I’m playing a small part in that :)

  6. John Podgorski 28/11/2011 at 7:14 pm #

    The bus is a MCW Metrobus, by the way – not a Leyland Olympian !

    • Andreas 28/11/2011 at 9:36 pm #

      Good knowledge John – thanks for correcting me!

  7. Dav 29/02/2012 at 2:11 pm #

    Hey! Does anyone know if the double decker is still around Hackney somewhere? I Saw it for a while parked at the end of Martello St, but disappeared short after.

    Cheers
    d

  8. Dave 27/06/2013 at 7:47 pm #

    There’s a Bicycle Library in a double decker bus at The Doodle Bar, 33 Parkgate Road
    London SW11 4NP – near Battersea Park.

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