Cycle hires hit a record monthly high

Santander bike Chris Warham shutterstock_307029647-2

Photo: Chris Warham | Shutterstock

July 2016 was the most successful month for Santander Cycle hire since the bike-sharing scheme was first introduced in 2010.

A record 1.18 million bikes were hired across London last month, an average of 38,000 hires a for each day of the month.  The data from Transport for London shows that on three days, 19th, 30th and 31st of July there were more than 46,000 hires. The average hire time was 23 minutes.

The monthly total beats the previous record for July 2014 by 5,200.  Summer months always prove the most popular times and monthly hires were also over one million in May and just under in June.  The number of hires in January and February this year was around half the July total.

The city bike scheme was introduced on 30th July 2010. In the first two days 12,000 bikes were hired and in the first month 340,000 as the scheme was rolled out across the boroughs and the docking stations became a familiar sight on the streets.

The data shows that the most popular day in the scheme’s six-year existence was 9th July last year when 73,000 bikes were hired.  On the 6th August that year the second highest total was recorded of 64,000.

Mainline stations are the popular hire points, as previously reported by Urbs, as commuters arriving from outside London and make their way to work in the morning and afternoon rush hours.

But the hire data at major landmarks and parks also suggests that tourists may be the biggest users of the bikes, with routes across Hyde Park among the most popular. The data shows that weekends see the largest usage and the most popular weekday for hire is a Thursday.

The bike sharing scheme was introduced by Boris Johnson when he was Mayor and the bicycles  became known as Boris bikes despite a sponsorship deal with Barclays.  Santander took over sponsorship of the scheme last year, but the bikes have not gone on to be re-named Sadiq cycles.

Source data

See also

Tourists biggest users of Boris Bikes

Americans back on top as London’s biggest visitors

How London compares for the cost of public transport

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Americans back on top as London’s biggest visitors

River Tower Br ShardAmericans were London’s leading overseas visitors last year after 8 years of being outnumbered by the French.

The surge from the States helped make 2015 another record-breaking year for the capital as, predicted by Urbs.  Data from Visit Britain shows that the capital welcomed 18.5 million people from around the world for leisure, education, business and family visits.

2.1 million of those visitors, or 11.5%, came from America, narrowly beating the French, although visitor numbers from France were also slightly up on 2014. Polish visitors pushed into the top 10 for the first time in 2015.

tourist data graph .001-2

As well as being the largest group, Americans also spent the most. Of the £11.9 billion the city generated from tourism, nearly a tenth came from American wallets alone last year.

London’s highest spending European visitors were French, with a total spend of £762 million. But on an individual basis the big spenders are from the Gulf countries of the Middle East. While the average London visitor spent £640, those from Kuwait and Saudi Arabia spent nearly five times that amount.

The ease of a hop across the Channel or a trip through the Tunnel means the French still account for more of London’s short-stayers than anyone else. 1.2 million French people came to the city for ‘le weekend’ and a trip lasting one to three nights.

The longest stayers came from Australia – 1.57 million of them stuck around for at least two weeks following presumably long-haul journeys for most of them. Despite the Australian’s extended time here, they trail other countries closer to home on tourist numbers and expenditure, including Germany, Italy and Spain.

As home to most of the UK’s biggest tourist attractions, it is no surprise that London’s main draw for visitors continues to be as a holiday destination. Half of those who came to the city from abroad did so for leisure. Internationally, London also remains a popular destination to do business, with 20% of those coming here on work commitments.

Irish and Polish family networks around London also seem to have grown in strength in the past year. Not only did their visitor numbers increase by almost one third and one fifth respectively, but as many as 39% of Irish and Polish visitors were in the capital to see family and relatives.

Source data

See also

Good news for tourists and Londoners as city dominates for visitor attractions

Tourists biggest users of Boris Bikes

How London’s choice of nightlife compares to other cities

It’s been a long time coming, so who’ll be aboard the Night Tube?

tube coming to station-2

The dispute about the Night Tube has has led to strikes causing misery for millions of Londoners.  It will be introduced this summer, but a poll by the Greater London Authority has found that a quarter of Londoners say they’ll never use it.

The GLA asked 1,000 people from across the capital their views on the Night Tube in a quarterly survey it carries out to canvas views about a range of issues.  The poll found that 26% said they would never use the service and that jumps to more than a third when those who say they would use it less than once or twice a year are added.

Those who will never use it outnumber the hard core party animals it seems.  18% of those surveyed said they’d use the service every weekend which includes 8% of those surveyed who’d use it every Friday and Saturday.

Not surprisingly, the figures on intended use look very different when broken down into age groups.  60% of over 65s say they’ll never use it and 43% of those 55-64.  But for younger people looking to enjoy their night out well into the early morning it’s a different picture. 49% of 18-24s say they’ll catch it every weekend, and for 25-34s it’s a massive 70%.

People in inner London are more likely to use the service than those in outer areas, and Asian people emerged from the survey with the lowest appetite for the service – 68% said they would ever catch a Night Tube compared to 85% of black people surveyed.

The service was due to start running last September but has been delayed by the dispute between Transport for London and the unions over pay, working hours and staffing. TfL is yet to confirm a start date but the Mayor, Boris Johnson, has said that it will start running at the end of July.

The service will run round the clock on Fridays and Saturdays on five lines – Jubilee and Victoria and most of the Central, Northern and Piccadilly lines.

Night-Tube-Map-officia_622

Night Tube Map: Transport for London

While there is a clear age division on taking the Night Tube there was a lot more agreement on its benefits. 80% said that it would have a positive impact on London’s night time economy and 82% that it would be a good for those going to work overnight.  London’s reputation as a 24-hour city will be enhance by the service according to 89% of those surveyed.

But there were also some negatives. 46% are concerned about an increase in anti-social behaviour and 41% are worried about noise.

The survey was conducted by telephone with a representative sample of Londoners on the 11-18th March by ICM on behalf of the GLA.

Source data

See also

Crime down nearly a third in 5 years on buses, Tube and trains

Strikes are a commuting disaster, but what delays your daily Tube journey?

How London compares for the cost of public transport

 

 

Sportiest Londoners live in the wealthier south west boroughs

running woman-2People living in south west London are the sportiest in the city with a far higher proportion taking part in regular physical activity.

More than a quarter of the residents of Wandsworth do some form of sporting activity three times per week or more, according to survey data from Sport England.  But across London, in Newham and Barking and Dagenham, it is half that. And in Brent just 12% of people are doing that level of activity.

The south west corner of London has 4 boroughs, apart from Wandsworth, with large proportions of sporty people.  The data for Hammersmith and Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, Richmond and Merton shows about a quarter of people doing 3 sessions per week.

But in Bexley and Greenwich it is just 15%. It’s 14% in Newham and Barking and Dagenham. Across the other side of the city, in the north west, it is 15% in Ealing, 13% in Hillingdon, but with 12% Brent has the lowest rate of people doing regular exercise.

sport particpation map

South west London is generally a more affluent area than other parts of the capital but the reason why people there are more active in sports is not clear. These boroughs also have low levels of obesity, while the proportion of people with severe weight problems is much higher in boroughs such as Hillingdon, Barking and Dagenham and Bexley, as previoulsy reported by Urbs.

The data gathered by Sport England through the Active People Survey also reveals that as a region London has the highest average rate for people doing 3 sessions or more of exercise.

Sport participation regional

The current rate of 18.3% is up from 17.2% 10 years ago.  While this growth has been modest the proportion of people doing no exercise has also seen little change, and remains stubbornly high. Across the capital 52% of the population does no sporting activity.  But in Newham it is 62% and in Barking and Dagenham it is 64%.

For these people, getting off the coach to take part in sport 3 times a week may be a very tall order.  A more modest achievement may be to find a way to get them to join the 38% of Londoners who take part in sport once a week.

Source data

See also

Sporty Londoners prefer solo exercise

Size matters – and it depends where you live

The way we spend our cash – more rent, less alcohol, healthier eating

Health and wealth – an East/West divide when it comes to a flu jab

 

 

A different way of mapping your whereabouts in London

High panorama-2As a city, London is a collection of well-established and distinct neighbourhoods, familiar to taxi drivers and residents alike.  The borough structure of Greater London gives a further set of boundaries, some less recognised than others.

Much of the information about the city is collated at borough level but there can be wide variations across London and within boroughs, as is often reported here on Urbs.London.

Future Cities Catapult, a government supported organisation working on urban innovation and development, got together with the GLA to come up with a new way of looking at city boundaries, not based on geography, but by grouping neighbourhoods according to the people and how the live there.

Using 235 datasets from the GLA Datastore, Land Registry, TFL, ONS and others, it has developed 8 clusters that it calls ‘Whereabouts’.  These are spread across the city and not confined by geographical boundaries, linking similar communities in different parts of the capital.

Whereabouts map-2

Whereabouts London map by Future Cities Catapult

Whereabouts key-2

Future Cities Catapult says that re-imagining the city in this way may aid local authorities to work co-operatively or help transport providers to improve their services.

To check your whereabouts go to http://whereaboutslondon.org/#/map

See also

Mapping Londoners

5 more boroughs will have a majority of BAME population in next 20 years

The way we spend our cash – more rent, less alcohol, healthier eating

 

Fire service is called to rescue hundreds of cats and it costs thousands

cat on wall-2Over the past 3 years the London Fire Brigade has been called out 1,700 times to rescue animals.

Many of the call outs were to proverbial ‘cat up a tree’ incidents, and rescuing cats made up around half the calls.  A number had become trapped on a roof.  The data does not reveal if they were hot tin ones.

Among the more bizarre incidents include a snake on the roof of the Regent’s Park mosque, a squirrel stuck in a satellite dish in Wandsworth and a budgie in Upper Norwood that had to be rescued from a ‘precarious position’.

The data for the financial years 2012-15 shows that while domestic pets including cats, dogs, rabbits and hamsters, make up most of the incidents the service is has also been involved in helping larger animals, including horses, ponies and cows. Wildlife has also been given a helping hand with trapped foxes saved and many birds freed from netting.

The London Fire Brigade estimates that animal rescues cost more than £150,000 a year and suggest that people first contact the RSPCA if they need help.

The data shows that a number of incidents involved the fire service subsequently being called in to assist RSPCA officers.

Source data

See also

Lifts going down – the number of people stuck in them, that is

A fifth of the blazes tackled by fire fighters are started on purpose

Rise in dog thefts hits outer boroughs hardest

Cats are the top dogs when it comes to pet ownership in the city

 

Visitor numbers and spending for 2015 on track for record-breaking year

London Eye pod-22015 is shaping up to be a very strong year for tourism in London. The latest data from Visit Britain shows a record number of visitors for the first six months of the year and record levels of spending.

There were 17.7 million visitors in the 12 months to the end of June, the highest ever total for a 12-month period. But visitors are not staying as long. The number of nights per visit has fallen to an average of 5.3, down from 6.2 per visit in 2014.

The French continue to be the most frequent visitors, as they have been since 2008. In the first 6 months of 2015 there were 1.1 million visitors from France. At that rate the figure of just over 2 million for 2104 will be surpassed.

January to June 2015 also saw 950,000 visitors from the USA and significant numbers from Germany, Spain and Italy.

Overseas visitor country-2

The French may be more frequent visitors, but the Americans stay longer. They clocked up more than 5 million overnight stays or 5.5 per visitor in the first 6 months of 2015. The average stay for French visitors is 3.7 nights.

Staying longer also means spending more. While visitors from France spend £371, those from the USA spend £827. Overseas visitors contribute four fifths of all tourist spending in London. In 2014 the capital raked in £11.8 billion.

Overseas visitor spend-2

Visit Britain gathers the data on visitor numbers from the International Passenger Survey, which is based on thousands of face-to face interviews.

Source data

See also

London ranked as top global city destination

Tourists biggest users of Boris Bikes

Good news for tourists and Londoners as city dominates for visitor attractions

The way we spend our cash – more rent, less alcohol, healthier eating

Credit card payment-2The average family in London spends £616.30 per week, £100 more than the national average, and most of the extra money is spent paying housing costs.

The data for household spending from the Office for National Statistics gives an insight in how households live based upon their spending patterns.

Rent is biggest bill each week for London households costing an average of £96.30 before any benefits are taken into account. That’s double the next nearest region, the South East, and 3 times more than households are paying in Scotland.

Households are spending £67.20 a week on transport, but the way that money is spent is different to the rest of the country. As a big city with a bus, tube and rail network London has the lowest level of spending on running a car and the highest on public transport.

The weekly food bill is £63.20 and reveals our eating habits. Households spent £2.90 on chicken compared to £1.80 on beef. And Londoners spend £3.60 a week on fish, more than any other region.

London households appear more health conscious, as they are the only ones in the UK to spend more on fresh fruit (£4.20) than on cakes and biscuits (£3.60).

They also spend less on alcohol and cigarettes. The average household drinks £7.30 worth of alcohol at home, lower than every region except the West Midland, and only the South West is spending less on smoking.

But while Londoners are saving something on booze at home their bar bills are the among the highest in the country. Average weekly spending on alcohol consumed away from home was £9.50, and eating out accounts for £21 per week.

Gambling appears less popular in London than elsewhere in the country. The average household bets £2.00 a week, the lowest of any region. Londoners spend more on books than anyone else, £1.80 a week, or enough to buy a paperback once a month.

Londoners spend £12.60 per household each week on pampering themselves with visits to the hairdresser, toiletries and hair and beauty products. Women spend £9.60 per week or £499.20 a year on clothing, 25% more than men.

Household spending


The ONS uses data from 2012-2104 to calculate regional averages.

Source data

See also

More “affordable” homes but the rents prove unaffordable for many

London may win for iPhone earning power over Poland but cost of living much higher

How London’s choice of nightlife compares to other cities

 

Forget keeping up with the neighbours, survey says we don’t even trust them

Neighbours 1000 Words shutterstock_296519900-1-2

PhotoL 1000 Words ┃Shutterstock.com

Londoners, it appears, don’t trust their neighbours. At least that’s what a survey commissioned by the Government suggests. Less than a third said they could trust the people in their neighbourhood.

This rather depressing finding is one of many from the Government’s annual Community Life Survey, which started 3 years ago. It was set up to assess feelings of community in society. The findings reinforce the widely held belief that the capital can be an unfriendly place. But the bad news for the country is the rest of England seems to be heading that way.

While only 31% of Londoners trust the neighbours, it is 44% in the rest of the country, but there’s been a significant fall in level of trust in the past 3 years.

community trust

While there may not be a great deal of trust, half the Londoners questioned chat with a neightbour at least once a week. The rest of England emerges as friendlier but not as friendly as it was.

community chat

One worrying result for both London and England as a whole is the falling rates of people who have a sense of belonging in the place they live. When this question was asked 3 years ago more than three quarters of people said they felt fairly or very strongly that they belonged in an area. In the most recent results that proportion has dropped to a little over 60%.

community belong

Despite this lack of belonging, some levels of community spirit seem to be holding fast. 57% of those asked in London said they felt people worked together to make their neighbourhood better.

community together

And there are 2 other positives. 83% of Londoners who took part said that they believed in Britain, and that rate has been consistent for 3 years. 84% said their area was one where people of different background could get on well together.

The Community Life Survey is commissioned by the Cabinet Office and carried out annually by a polling company.  In 2014-15 2,000 participants were interviewed.

Source data

See also

The Marmite response to living in the capital

Many in caring professions negative towards LGBT people, says survey

 

How London’s choice of nightlife compares to other cities

dancing-2London is rightly famous for vibrant nightlife but if you want a bar scene Rio’s the place for you, and if you want to shake something then head to Shanghai.

A serious-minded report on the impact of economic growth on culture and the creative industries has thrown up some interesting facts about how London compares with other cities.

It appears that while people in London may like a drink, that’s as nothing compared to the bar scene of some Latin capitals. Madrid has twice the number of drinking establishments of either London or New York. Rio has more than twice the number of Madrid. But the figures really stand out when you look at the number of bars per 100,000 of the population.

Bars per 100k

Our capital does a little better when it comes to restaurants. London has similar number as New York but fewer than Paris. But if you want some choice in eating out then Toyko is then place for you. The Japanese capital has 150,510 restaurants. That’s equivalent to 1 for every 100 people. Depending on the size of the eating places it seems that a fair proportion of Tokyo’s residents could go out to dinner one night.

Restaurants

There’s a bigger clubbing scene is in London than Berlin, but if you’ve got your dancing shoes on then point them to Shanghai which has twice the number of clubs and dance halls as LA.

Clubs

 

London appears to be falling down when it comes to live music. With 245 venues London trails behind New York. The data for London on this is from 2011 and recent reports suggest more venues closing.  Australia emerges in the figures as the place to see live bands and singers. Sydney may be a smaller city but it has nearly matched New York for venues, and Melbourne out performs them all.

Live muisc

The French emerge in the data as the most avid cinema-goers with 30% more cinema admissions in Paris than London. It has more cinema screens too, nearly matching Los Angeles, the home of Hollywood.

cinema

Data sources

World Cities Culture Forum 2015 report

See also

Economic growth carries risk for culture and creativity, says report

Why the Mayor thinks busking should be music to our ears

London losing its thirst for binge drinking