Cycle boom for Bike Week

London are taking lessons from Holland to get more people on their bikes. MPs, Dutch representatives and London schoolchildren cycled from the Dutch Embassy to the Houses of Parliament today to celebrate the start of Bike Week.

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London bike facts

You can cover 4 miles in 22 minutes in Central London - it takes 40 minutes by car Credit: ITN

-You can cover 4 miles in an average of 22 minutes in Central London by bike, when it takes about 40 minutes by car.

-8 bikes can be parked in the space occupied by one car.

-London has around 500 police on bikes.

-In Central London the ambulance service is supported by a fully equipped cycling paramedic team.- Regular cycling halves the chances of heart disease, helps to lower blood pressure, and the resting heart rate.

-Cycling increases calorie consumption, raises the metabolic rate and can help you to lose weight.

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540,000 trips made in London every day

Boris Johnson with cyclist Chris Boardman Credit: Andrew Matthews/PA Wire/Press Association Images

Mayor Boris Johnson is a keen cyclist and launched a bicycle hire scheme, affectionately known as 'Boris bikes' in 2010. Since then the number of cyclists in the capital has boomed.

'Boris bikes' were launched in 2010 Credit: Nick Ansell/PA Wire/Press Association Images
  • 2010/11 saw 540,000 cycle trips made in London per day

  • 173% increase in cycling on London's main roads between 2000/01 and 2011/12

  • 23% of Londoners cycled in the last year (2010/2011)

  • 35% of London households own a bicycle (8% increase over one year, 2010/2011)

  • 1 in 10 Londoners make a round trip by bike every day

  • 48,397 Londoners received cycle training in 2010/11

Just 2% of journeys in London are by bike

The Dutch have been drafted in to advise on cycling policy and infrastructure Credit: Chris Radburn/PA Archive/Press Association Images

London is seeing a boom in cycling, with well over half a million cycle trips made every day. To help prepare, the Dutch - who boast Amsterdam as one of the most bike friendly cities in the world - have been drafted in to advise on cycling policy and infrastructure.

So how do we compare? According to figures from the London Cycling Campaign:

  • Amsterdam: 600,000 cycle journeys per day in a population of 750,800 = 37% of journeys are by bike.

  • London: About 500,000 cycle journeys per day in a population of 8.1m = 2% of journeys by bike.

MPs, Dutch representatives and London schoolchildren cycled en masse from the Dutch Embassy to the Houses of Parliament today to celebrate the start of Bike Week 2013 (15-23 June).

The ride marks a closer partnership between the two countries, with Dutch experts advising a delegation from the UK on cycling policy and infrastructure in preparation for a predicted record year for cycling.