In 2021, WNBR London has 8 starts plus an accessible option. Here are some comments to help you choose your start. You can find details about the starts from the Activities page.
Croydon is a new start this year. It will be the longest of the routes at 20⅓ miles (32½ Km). Riders will need to keep up a good speed before joining the other groups in Central London. The venue is in a gated, private property with no onlookers.
Kew Bridge slips to second longest at 17¾ miles (28½ Km). The ride crosses the meandering Thames several times before joining in with the Clapham Junction start. The ride starts from the southbound roadside at the north end of the bridge.
Clapham Junction is very convenient for the train connections, after all, it is the biggest junction and has the most trains passing through – over 2,000 on weekdays. It is optionally a circular route, with riders returning to the start point after completing the ride. Our start point is alongside the station (Platform 1 side) in a fairly small public square. The route is 9 miles (14½ Km) without the optional return leg.
Deptford at 10⅓ miles (16⅔ Km) is another fairly long ride. It will meet other groups at Tower Hill and continue as part of a merged group. The start is at Matchstick Piehouse, a theatre, café and bar.
Victoria Park is another new route for 2021. It is around 11½ miles long (18½ Km). The group is led by one of our disabled cyclists and will take a comfortable route before becoming part of the overall peloton.
The other rides are relatively easy rides into the centre.
Tower Hill is arguably the most scenic ride, starting alongside the Tower of London, crossing four bridges, riding alongside the river, passing through Trafalgar Square and Westminster. It’s handy for London Bridge, Waterloo, Charing Cross, Fenchurch St and Liverpool St stations. We use a public park, so there will be onlookers and photographers. The ride from here is about 7¾ miles (12½ Km).
Hyde Park is the best-known starting point and always attracts large crowds (including photographers), so those riders need to enjoy being in a crowd! Each year we agree details with the Royal Parks (and the Parks’ Police). Being a large group of riders, it tends to move slowly. It is a short route at just over 7½ miles (12¼ Km).
Regents Park is an easy ride down through the centre of town, and particularly good if you are bringing your bike in via Euston or Kings Cross stations. The Royal Parks do not give us permission to start from the Park, so we start roadside instead. There has not been a problem with people visiting the park before the start, but they should not get naked, do bodypainting or look like they are lining up for the start! This is the shortest route at just under 7½ miles (12 Km).
We can no longer offer the start at West Norwood as the property owner has moved – and now offers the route from Croydon instead.
All the routes merge for the core part of the route, from Westminster Bridge onwards, to form the 1,000+ rider peloton (which always moves at a safe, comfortable pace and gets stuck a bit). The main route ends near Hyde Park Corner.
There are usually several participants with restricted ability to ride a bike. This year, for the first time, WNBR London has included an accessible option. It is a relatively short and easy route, running between two rest points.
Reducing Covid-19 risks
To reduce the risks from Covid-19, the time allowed for assembly, rest breaks and dispersal has been shortened from the usual arrangements. The finishing time is hard to predict, given the possibility of diversions and hold ups. We aim to complete the ride near Hyde Park Corner around 17:30.
Participants should do their best to ensure they are not at risk from the virus. Nobody should ride if they have symptoms or have had a recent positive test. We recommend riders take a lateral flow test in the morning of the ride, use sanitiser and keep their masks on, particularly when stationary.
Social contact will be minimised:
- Time at starts, finishes and rest points will be as short as practical.
- Start groups will not wait for all other riders to be present before moving on.
- Riders should disperse as soon as they reach the finish.
- Participants should socially distance when stationary.
- No bodypainting at starts.
- The afterparty has been cancelled.
WNBR London takes place on the public streets of London. Nobody can control the actions or behaviours of the public. Participants should endeavour to avoid crowds and interactions with strangers.