Tuesday 3 August 2010

St Thomas' to Guy's Hospital by Bike

With around 11,000 staff across the Guy's and St Thomas' NHS Foundation Trust there's quite a lot of shuffling back and forth. You'd think, given that Active Travel has been around for a few years, that they'd have a lovely cycle route worked out between the two hospitals.

Apparently not.

Here are my thoughts, aiming to avoid major roads and the current construction work on the southbank. I welcome alternative suggestions.

Here's the largely off-road route, in the main following National Cycle Network 4. It's the most mellow and safe route for St Thomas' and Guy's Hospital Trust employees, though at times somewhat congested with pedestrians. From a risk-assessment perspective I think this is the one the Trust should recommend for those who are understandably nervous about cycling in traffic while at work. Options include walking the bike from the entrance to St Thomas' to the start of the on-pavement cycle path by Westminster Bridge unroundabout rather than cycling on Lambeth Palace Road. You also cycle along the north-side shared-use pavement under Blackfriar's Bridge rather than the road, going either way. The route requires you to walk along one-way Bedale Street when going towards Guy's. In both directions you have to walk your bike across Borough High Street between Bedale Street and St Thomas' Street. Given the construction work happening on The Shard, cautious cyclists may prefer to walk the bike on the pavement along St Thomas' Street.

Here's the St Thomas' to Guy's Hospital on-road route. It includes an illegal right turn out of St Thomas's but otherwise is I believe legal and on relatively quiet roads.

Here's the Guy's to Thomas' Hospital on-road route. It's quite faffy when you get close to St Thomas' but I think it's legal!

The Trust could usefully use its clout to improve Active Travel conditions in the area for its employees, patients and visitors.