October 2021

Really nice ride I thought, as an ‘oldie’ I thought it worked well, interesting route, decent pace but also those at the front regularly stopping to let us bunch up, lots of tunes, very little aggro.

Not sure of numbers, seemed quiet at South Bank but once we got going maybe 400 or so? Quite a few fab costumes of course as its Halloween, plus lots of LED displays on backpacks, lights and sounds. Looks great at night! Quite a variety of vehicles, lots of powered scooters and those mono wheel things.

A little surprised to see 3 police on bicycles at south bank, but after a half hearted attempt to cork the IMAX roundabout for us, they disappeared – guessing they were just passing by rather than a concerted effort to escort us.

Only one downer was subsequent reports that some people using CM as a cover to steal phones from people we passed….

“ Mass was vibes until the phone theft. What was going on was riders on ebikes were racing on to the pavement while people were filming us go past or had there phones out, pinching them before coming back into the ride. I ended up chasing on of them down and telling him to allow it and if he was going to just do it away from the ride. It seemed within 24hrs this had progressed at the Bike Stormz ride to not only phones but riders being jumped for their bikes.

The Fedbook has this to say:

It ain’t our job to fight crime but this can’t ruin the fun. Also bare in mind at the start there were police on bikes when we rolled out (which I have never seen in the 6months of doing mass) and we potentially had a helicopter above us at London Bridge.

We get enough attention already we don’t need no more with this ebike thefts”

The list answered thus:

Agreed that this theft stuff has the potential to ruin the ride. But the Nov 26th ride was different and to some degree better, but with its own hiccups. The slow tempo kept riders together, and it was good to see that the ride was not overwhelmed by the wheelie kids taking extreme risks. But we did accidentally split up. Be good to establish a lead group, so we are all on the same ride – at least the more political amongst us. The advantage of a slower pace cuts out isolation and exposure to theft & robberies, that can ruin the ride. Of course we don’t want to act like police or do the police forces job for them either. But we should reclaim the streets from thugs as well – the police have little interest in defending the likes of us. Maybe start a wee discussion about this before the start of the next ride. Then put ideas together. Maybe a certain call that stops the whole ride, where we compact together so that a thief cannot escape.

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