TO THE EDITOR OF THE TIMES
I belong to the large majority of your readers who cycle and, notwithstanding the bitter opposition of the minority of non-cyclists. I venture to appeal to you to state our grievances in reference to travelling. I have taken many journeys, but not one without disastrous damage to my cycle. Yesterday it was banged flat upon the platform at St Pancras and the bell destroyed. At Bedford it was in the centre of a tangled mass of cycles, about 18 in number, piled one on another and could not be extracted without such violent and hurried tearing apart that the dress-guard of gut was hanging in shreds at the end of my short journey and the repairs will not cost me less than 10s. If we paid a trifling additional sum, as in France, for the carriage we might think silence on the point “golden,” but as 1s. 6d. is charged for quite a short journey we consider our cycles are entitled to some care and ought to be taken at the company’s risk. Were this so the employees would, no doubt, have sufficient reason to take ordinary care and proper bicycle vans or other accommodation would be provided.
Hoping this letter may elicit the experiences of other travellers,
I remain yours faithfully,
September 6 L. H. H.
May I venture to call attention to a pressing want? A few days ago, wishing to leave a bicycle at Victoria Station, I was informed by a porter that the cloak-room authorities were not empowered to take charge of cycles, but that I could leave it at a tobacconist’s shop a few minutes’ walk from the station. Surely by this time adequate accommodation should have been supplied. Hoping this will meet the eye of the railway authorities and will prove a means of remedying this unsatisfactory state of affairs.
I am, Sir, your obedient servant,
September 10. BICYCLIST
The Times, Monday, Sep 13, 1897; pg. 8