Boris Bikes not coming to Clapham’s Northern Line

After hearing about the extension of the cycle hire ‘Boris Bikes’ into South West London, including parts of Battersea and Clapham (along Wandsworth Road down to Clapham Junction) we got in touch with TFL to ask when they’d come other areas of Clapham. In particular, along the heavily congested Northern Line route from Clapham North, through Balham down to Tooting.

TFL confirmed that there “are no plans to expand further at this time”, and that they definitely aren’t coming to this area for the time being (not this year, and with no plans at all yet, we’d guess that currently, unlikely for 2014 either). This due to a number of factors that included:

  • Funding
  • Maintenance of docking stations 500m apart
  • Likely usage – particularly multi-direction usage
  • Available suitable land for docking stations
  • Local demand
  • Council support

However, TFL report that the Northern Line is the single most congested line, particularly at the stations Clapham North, Clapham Common, Clapham South, Balham and Tooting Bec. We’ve just had the cycle super highway added along this route to encourage cyclists (which is working), and we’re being encouraged by TFL to change our commute at these points, including the recommendation of cycling.

Therefore Clappers, like Sherlock Holmes I conclude that it is the most sensible place in probably the whole of London for this bike scheme to come!

What do you think? Do you want them? Will people use them? Is it worth us starting a petition to show local support and mapping out possible docking station location? 

6 thoughts on “Boris Bikes not coming to Clapham’s Northern Line

  1. I’ve been waiting for a Boris bike terminal in Clapham for ages! Yes please, start a petition…we Northern Line users are in desperate need!

  2. Totally agree! I much rather cycle to stockwell, vauxhall or beyond than face rush hour on the northern line. Please get a petition started. We need TfL to bring bikes to Clapham.

  3. Hello Jack,
    My name is Giulia Sgarbi and I am a journalism student at Goldsmiths. I am very interested in your website, I find it an awesome platform to discuss and comment current local issues. I am currently writing an article about the EMRO proposed by Lambeth Council that will ban the sales of alcohol after midnight in some areas of Clapham (as you already know, for sure), affecting many local businesses. I was wondering if I could get some views from you about this issue for my article.
    I would be extremely grateful if you, or anyone from Clapham who’d like to share their views, could help me. You can contact me anytime by email ( or on my mobile (07539606108).
    Looking forward to hearing from you,

  4. I’ve been a big advocate of getting these bikes to the Northern line route through Clapham and Balham, also to help give better, quicker access to the junction. The bit that annoys me though is the claim of ‘no local demand’. I live a stones throw from Clapham North station and I have never seen correspondence looking for our opinions. I can assure them, the local opinion is that there is demand…demand right now!

  5. The omission of Clapham Common and Clapham North is weird – especially as I often see the maintenance vans going along Clapham Park Road!

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