Who are we? What are our aims?

We are not sure, opinions seem to differ. There are probably as many aims of CM as there are participants. Each individual comes there with his or her own idea of what it’s about, and the sum of this makes up the Mass. We have no organisers and no planned routes and this website does not try to be representative of CM in any way.

Critical Mass achieved its international name following the first ever ride in San Francisco back in 1992, where it was christened ‘Commute Clot’. It was then “noted that, in China both motorists and bicyclists had an understood method of negotiating intersections without signals. Traffic would “bunch up” at these intersections until the back log reached a “critical mass” at which point that mass would move through the intersection”. Film ‘Return of the Scorcher’ also features the scene which led to the adoption of the name “Critical Mass” for the rides which now occur around the world.

The London monthly rides started in April 1994. 1995-96 reports. Videos from the 90s. It isn’t just for cyclists, sometimes there are wheelchairers, skateboarders, roller bladers, roller skaters and other self-propelled people. Cycle sound systems often play music on the ride. To find out more about Critical Mass checkout the links on the left.

This site is for information purposes only and we are in no way involved with organising Critical Mass. We agree that it’s far better to fill the city with smoky cars and travel slower than a sleepy sloth in lead boots than to offer clean reliable public transport and encourage pollution-free cyclists. Unlike cars and trucks, cyclists are a disruptive danger to traffic. And so are pedestrians.


You are welcome to post comments but if they are time-sensitive (for example – ‘when is the next ride?’ or ‘well done for the last ride!’) you will be sent an email back asking to pot your comment on that month’s, or the latest report.

If you haven’t provided a valid email address, we can not or will not answer you, so your post is most likely not to be accepted. We do not need to know who you are, we just need a way to contact you.

If you’re not happy about this, get involved in the mailing list and in the admin of this site. Thanks!

7 thoughts on “Who are we? What are our aims?

  1. Congrats on the new site!

    I noticed that there are 2 different times, one on the home page and the other one (closer to when we leave) on the “when and where”.

    But why I’m really writing this is pointing out that it is our 20th anniversary in April and it would be great to have a special CM with everyone who has ever been on it coming along!
    With cakes and dancing with all the sound systems there ever was and Doug carried aloft through the streets of London and a big celebration!!

    So start networking and let’s give London a party to remember.

    • For me, it’s the opportunity, once a month (sadly only once a month), to skate or cycle fairly safely across London, in good company. It’s also about raising awareness of the need to make it safer to cycle or skate every day.

  2. Hello,
    is more of a question then a comment, we are planning to organise a bike ride as part of “Save our practices” [http://occupylondon.org.uk/tower-hamlets-konp-save-our-surgeries/]
    When we have the final date would it be possible to announce it on you website? How to do that? Thank you very much for your time and reply!
    Have a great sunny day on your bike!

  3. The road system across London is a capable of safely shifting masses of vehicles in different directions only when all participants (motorised vehicles, self-propelled vehicles and pedestrians) work together within the rules. A CM ride has the ability to make a statement but does not seem to do so, while it disrupts the purpose of the road system together with the interests of other road users. What is the justification for this?

  4. Critical mass is fun.

    Critical mass raises the awareness of cyclists.

    We come together because together our voice is louder.

    London cycle infrastructure is not good. It is ok in places.

    I would like to see it improved because i would like more people to cycle. It is healthy for people and healthy for the planet and that is good.

    It’s important

  5. Taking part in critical mass is a must experience. It is very strange, there is people of all ages, professions, with all kinds of toys that they can ride, some rich others poor, some smart others a bit slow like me (I once took out 5 cyclist as I felt down) hehe. Great fun.

  6. STOLEN BIKES – Brick Lane
    Can CM muster enough bodies and adrenaline on Sunday mornings to tackle the market of stolen bikes at Brick Lane? We work and pay for our wheels, but there is this parasitic shadow movement which sees the opportunity to profit at our expense. We have to do this.

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