MCN Longest Day: Bike Shed visit

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Today (June 20) is the Longest Day Of The Year and to make the most of it the MCN team is riding from dawn to dusk, soaking up as much of the 16 hours and 38 minutes of sunlight as possible. Along with regular updates on the site follow us throughout the day on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram. #MCNLongestDay and keep up to date with all our riders here.

Summer continues to elude us as we leave the warmth of the Ace Cafe for the wet roads of London heading for Bike Shed, Shoreditch via Buckingham Palace and Parliament Square for some sightseeing.

The rain is much heavier now and MCN reader David Smith has joined our journey, having met Ped for sunrise at Lowestoft before making his way to the Ace Cafe for breakfast.

Following the BMW satnav right through the centre of London is slow going, the panniers forcing me to yet again sit in traffic 90% of the time. When we can filter it’s only a few vehicles at a time as traffic islands funnel us back behind cars.

Despite the horrible weather Buckingham Palace is a hive of tourists, huddling under umbrellas, trying to take selfies in front of the gates. The Mall is empty and pulling upto the traffic lights it’s tempting to really give the XR a handful down the long straight, but common sense prevails.

The traffic lightens slightly around Parliament Square, and with the rain still coming down hard we head onto Victoria Embankment, hoping it’ll be a little quiter. Wrong. Embankment is the busiest road we’ve been on all day, with no room to filter, except for a few feet every now and then. 

The BMW creates bow waves as we ride parallel to the Thames and, bored of the traffic, I ignore the satnav and follow my nose down a clear side street.  My nose was right, and just a few junctions later we pull up at the Bike Shed, gloves wringing wet and ready for a coffee.

Follow our journey as the MCN team chases the daylight across the UK and if you can, join us at one of the stops along the way.

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Liam Marsden and Maria Vallahis

By Liam Marsden and Maria Vallahis