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Is there secure bicycle parking at Reading train station? By secure I mean: staffed and with a system that ensures other people cannot take my bicycle, where I can leave a bicycle safely for 3 days.

The page Car and cycle parking at Reading station makes mention of three alternatives for bicycle (Outside the city centre entrance, Underground short stay car park, or Long stay car park), but it is not clear to me whether any of those are staffed, secure parking locations, nor what the fees are. The Reading station map does not contain this information either.

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    I haven't been hunting for bike parking since they finished all the station work at Reading, but it always used to be just a bunch of bike hoops. Unless you've found specific reference to something like a "Bike Locker", assume the bike parking is both free and unsupervised – Gagravarr Apr 23 '15 at 20:46
  • @Gagravarr Hmm, considering the large number of people commuting from Reading to London, I'd expect there should be a market for something more secure than that... – gerrit Apr 23 '15 at 21:04
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    Huge numbers of people cycle to Oxford station then get the train, and yet the 600 bike parking spaces there are just hoops you lock your bike to. Only something like a quarter of the spaces are covered, and there's no staff manning it! See Google Streetview – Gagravarr Apr 23 '15 at 21:35
  • Ah well, looks like they don't want to encourage cycling in the UK... They're a bit behind the 12,500 bicycle station being constructed in Utrecht, Netherlands. I'll have to find another way to get to the station. – gerrit Apr 23 '15 at 22:27
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    Cycling provision in the UK is "complicated", with lots of non-joined-up thinking and mixtures of pro and anti cycling... One option is to get a bike reservation on your train, and take the bike with you. Another is to take it to a bike shop in Reading (eg Evans Cycles) for a minor bit of work, and collect it on your return! – Gagravarr Apr 23 '15 at 22:52
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I work in Reading and regularly cycle in the area and also use the station.

I can tell you that no such provision exists for secure bicycle storage. The station is a known hotspot for cycle theft so I would not risk leaving a decent bike there.

But...if your bike isn't particularly expensive and doesn't stand out you'll probably be OK. Just remember to follow normal bicycle locking advice.

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As I have only ridden through Reading on a through train, I can only give the answer as Internet allows me. But from the lack of information I would say that the parking is not safe enough to leave an expensive bike for 3 days.

The railway station information page gives 'stands' as main option for parking the bikes, the car parks are given as extra without any information on bikes, as you have found for yourself.

No bike blog about safe parking but there is a photo map where they show a missing (stolen) bike and mention how usual stolen bikes are in the location.

An English blogger who lives in the Netherlands and is very much aware of cycling and cycle safety mentions in one of his blog entries:

The new parking takes the total number of bicycle spaces at Reading to 160

which is 160 spaces and no mention at all about safe, under cover or secured places.

I take this as negative proof, no mention about secure bicycle parking, not even on those sites that would mention it when it would be there. Yes, you can park your bike in a car park, but knowing security in car parks, I would not rely on that, anything smaller than a car can be taken out without ringing bells.

  • The linked national rail page says that the parking is sheltered and that there is cctv. More informative is, imho, the streetview of the bicycle parking on Forbury Road from the photo map you linked which shows that the parking is wide open (no doors, gates, badges, etc.), and the shelter is provided by a balcony/terrase above the bicycle stands. You might want to add the picture of the streetview in your post. ;) – JoErNanO May 5 '15 at 8:58

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