Try-A-Bike loans in Camden

Our free bicycle loan scheme is for those who want to experience the advantages of cycling but do not yet have a bike of their own.   

We offer bikes for: 

During a free, no-obligation bike loan you can decide whether buying your own bicycle will be the right choice for you. Loan bikes must be returned after a set period, except where cargo and family bikes are provided by our supplier Peddle My Wheels who are offering options to buy the bike.

There has never been a better time to give cycling a go - roads are being made safer for walking and cycling all across Camden. 

Try-A-Bike is open to adults (18 years and over) who live, work or study in London Borough of Camden.  Deposit payment and proof of identity required.  Borrowers must store bikes securely overnight and are responsible for their safe use.  Bike loans include locks and lights.  

We offer free cycle road safety training, too.  Cycle with confidence - register for one of our training courses before or during your Try-A-Bike loan.  

Register for Try-A-Bike

Bikes for people who live, work or study in Camden

We support people in Camden who don't have a bike of their own and are considering to take up cycling.  

There are three types of easy-to-ride bikes on offer for free four-week loans:

1.    Dutch-style step-through pedal bicycle

Versatile, comfortable bikes for relaxed urban commuting and leisure cycling.  Easy to ride, suitable for beginners and experienced cyclists.     

Cambridge Bobbin bike Gazelle Paris bike

2.    Brompton Folding Bike

A folding bike may not be as quick and comfortable as a standard full-size bike, but is ideal for carrying, storing in tight spaces. and taking on public transport.  For security, our Brompton bike should always be kept close to the rider and not be locked unattended in public places.  

Brompton folding bike

3.    Dutch style step-through electric bikes

Our Gazelle Vento electric bikes are easy to ride, let you go further with less effort and help you go up hills.  They come with a detachable battery and charger which connects to a standard power socket.  The bikes can achieve a range of 30 miles or more on a single charge.  

Gazelle electric bike

 

A secure place for overnight storage, proof of ID and a returnable deposit are required to secure a loan. 

Deposit amounts are £10 for Dutch-style pedal bikes, £50 for Bromptons and £50 for electric assisted bikes. 

Forthcoming handover Try-A-Bike handover dates are 

Collection Return  
Monday 5 September 2022 Monday 3 October 2022 cancellations only
Monday 3 October 2022 Monday 7 November 2022 waiting list
Monday 7 November 2022 Monday 5 December 2022 waiting list
Monday 5 December 2022 Monday 30 January 2022 bike loans available

Bike handovers are conducted in accordance with Covid-19 guidance.  

Register for Try-A-Bike

Family bikes for parents and young children

We support parents in Camden who want to adopt healthy, sustainable travel with their young children.  Our electric assisted family bikes will safely carry  up to two children. 

This offer is particularly suited to families who live or work in the "Neighbourhoods of the Future" area , or have a young child visiting a school there (see map below).  

There are various types of family cycle on offer: 

1. Pedal and electric assisted bikes fitted with a child seat

These are the same type of bike as offered for other adult loans.  They are of sturdy design with a strong rack at the rear and a securely mounted child seat, capable of carrying a child from age 9 months up to a weight of 22kg (49lbs, Child seats not shown on illustration).  The deposit amounts per pedal bike are £10, or £50 with electric assistance.  

Gazelle Paris bike  Gazelle electric bike

 

2. Christiania tricycle

This passenger tricycle of classic Danish design is now available with electric motor assistance.  With no need to balance, it is extremely easy to ride.  This cycle is considerably wider and a little longer than a regular bike.  There is a bench for two children at the front with more room for large load.  For more information about this cycle see https://www.londongreencycles.co.uk/shop/bikes/christiania-classic-light

black Christiania tricycle

 

3. Urban Arrow Shorty

This nimble and versatile family bike is roughly the same length as a regular bike.  With a maximum gross vehicle weight of 190kg, it can take securely carry two children and some cargo, too.  For more information about this bike see https://www.urbanarrow.com/en/shorty 

black Urban Arrow Shorty  black Urban Arrow Shorty with child seats

3. Urban Arrow full size

This state of the art transport vehicle is has the capacity to fit two young passenger and sizeable loads.  Due to its impressive size a large secure storage area will be needed.  Riding this bicycle requires a little practice until the rider is used to weight and dimensions.  For more information about this bike see https://www.urbanarrow.com/en/family

black Urban Arrow full size cycle

 

4. Babboe family bikes

Families not connected with "Neighbourhoods of the Future" area (see map below) can register with our supplier Peddle My Wheels for a Babboe family bike loan .  They are also offering options to buy the bike.  For more information about this range of bikes see www.babboe.co.uk

Babboe Bike

A secure place for overnight storage, proof of ID and a returnable deposit are required to secure a bike loan.  The deposit amount is £200 unless otherwise stated. 

Dates for bike loan collections and returns are arranged by appointment, in accordance with Covid-19 guidance.  

State in your registration if you live, work or have a young child visiting school in the "Neighbourhoods of the Future" area (see map below).

Register for Try-A-Bike    

Fitzjohns Frognal area map

Cargo bikes for transportation and business

Try Before You Bike

We support businesses in Camden that want to cut down on car or van use and move forward with sustainable transport.  

Try Before You Bike is a scheme that allows anyone who lives, works or studies in the borough to try out a new or nearly new cargo bike for a monthly fee which you can claim back if you want to buy the bike

Costs of the scheme

The monthly fee to hire a bike starts at £200 for an electric cargo bike

Included in the cost is insurance against theft and damage, essential accessories like lights, lock and a helmet and free delivery to your door by a cycling expert who will help get you started

If you love your bike you get the hire fees deducted from the price and you can pay the balance through an interest free payment plan or by using the Cycle to Work scheme

All the bikes are good quality from makes like Raleigh and Ridgeback and the online ordering system makes it simple to select the right size bike for you

Cycle skills training

If you are a beginner and require more training you can get free cycle skills sessions through the Council’s cycle training program. Details will be provided when you order your bike and this is subject to council funding.

Thousands of Londoners have started cycling using this flexible, supportive scheme and it is a great way to get into cycling if you are not ready to go out and buy a new bike yet

Find out more

Find out more from our partners Peddle My Wheels who run the scheme on our behalf:

Try Before You Bike 

During the bike loan

We are fortunate that we can offer Camden Try-A-Bike loans for a limited period at no cost to users.  In return, we ask participants to use the cycles responsibly and carefully so that the same loans can be made available to many others, too.  

In particular, participants must:

  • keep cycles secure at all times, locking unattended bikes as instructed;
  • ride the cycles only for their intended purpose, ride within the limits of their ability, observe the highway code and other relevant obligations;
  • keep the cycles in roadworthy condition, inflate tyres when needed, carry out minor maintenancesuch as repairs of punctured tyresat their own cost; 
  • respond to all communication from Camden Try-A-Bike, and notify us of any major issues affecting the use of the cycle;    
  • return the bike at the end of the loan period at the place and time notified.

We will sign a loan agreement with details of deposit paid, and of bike and equipment loaned.

Cycles will be fitted to suit the size of the rider. 

Riders must demonstrate they can safely control the bike.  We recommend signing up for free Camden Cycle Skills training.  

In the event of loss or theft the police must be notified immediately.  Camden Try-A-Bike must be notified as soon as possible.  If damage or loss are due to negligence on part of the user, such as not securing the bike, LB Camden will recoup the value of the loss.    

If you find cycling a positive experience, we would encourage you to buy a suitable bike from a trader of your choice.  

Register for Try-A-Bike