Tag Archives: bike

Edinburgh’s Cycle Hire Bikes are set to be released across the city

Edinburgh’s cycle hire bikes will be launched on Monday 17th September and last week I got a chance to take one out for a ride around Leith.

Just Eat Cycles, named after the bike’s  sponsor, will launch with 200 bikes across an initial 19 different docking locations across Edinburgh. But this is just the beginning, as Matt McNulty, urban mobility director at Serco told me there would hopefully be 80 docking stations and 1000 bikes available by Christmas this year.

But how do the bikes handle? As a previously keen cyclist I miss using my bike in Edinburgh, when I had a regular commute I would used the bike most days, so it was great to be back in the saddle.

The first thing I noticed was the upright seating style of the bikes, which makes you much more aware of your surroundings, great for having a look around as a tourist but perhaps not the best for getting from A to B in a hurry.

The bikes feel sturdy although they do not come with a helmet so it is up to you if you take your own (as I did) or go without. The three gear system is simple and straightforward and although I didn’t hit the heights of the Royal Mile I’m sure the bikes will get folk around the city without too much effort.

I love the fact each bike has its own name, mine was ‘Heather’ and here is another sketch of her by the Victoria Bridge.

You can hire the bikes by a single, daily or yearly subscription:

£1.50 for a single trip of up to 1 hour – each 30 minutes thereafter is £1 extra.
£3 for a day subscription, allowing unlimited journeys of up to 1 hour each in a 24 hour period.
For £90 you can sign up for an annual membership, allowing unlimited ‘1 hour’ hires for 365 days.

For more information and for details of how to download the app which you will need to hire the bikes, see the Edinburgh Cycle Hire website below.

Edinburgh Cycle Hire website

My Victorian Cycle postcards have arrived

vintagepostcardsallMy new set of Victorian Edinburgh Cycle themed postcards are now available to buy in my online shop.

I have been planning this set of cards for some time so am pleased to see them printed and available to buy. This time last year I was asked to run a sketching table at the National Museum of Scotland and their Museum Lates event which was Victorian themed to tie in to their display all about photography since its origins in the Victorian era.

I was so inspired by the portraits and landscapes from the time I thought it would be great to try and sketch some Victorian scenes of Edinburgh, and I have always been a fan of including bicycles in my drawings. The lines and circles just appeal to me 🙂

So here are the resulting pieces from researching photographs of Edinburgh streets, clothing and bicycles being ridden at the time.

We have a young woman cycling through West Port, another circling the fountain in Princes Street Gardens and a smart gentleman riding a penny farthing along Princes Street. Bottom left sees a librarian delivering books on Hanover Street, a chap pushing his bike though the Meadows and finally a cycle race down the Royal Mile into Canongate.


Each of the A6 (105x148mm) cards is decorated with a backing design to mimic postcards of the time, with room for your message and senders address.

These postcards will retail around town for around £1.00-£1.20 each but you can buy a pack of all six designs from my online shop for just £5.00 plus postage and packaging.


Buy a pack of postcards on through my shop website


Autumn in the Meadows park, Edinburgh

MeadowsAutumnThere’s a wonderful show of colour currently in Edinburgh, as Autumn waves a magic wand over all our trees.

Everyone should take a walk through the beautiful colours of the Meadows park just now as October runs into November and the Edinburgh central park runs from green through bright yellows to vibrant oranges and deep dark reds.


I tried to capture a few of these colours this afternoon with my watercolours, but to be honest similarly to taking a photograph, the reproduction is a poor relation to the real thing.



A cycle and a sketch in Edinburgh city

Bike_CloseUpShowcasing my EdinburghSketcher merchandise across the city on two wheels.

Today I was delivering merchandise to a few shops, Concrete Wardrobe on Broughton Street, ICE retail in the St James Centre and Looking Glass Books in Quartermile near the Meadows.


I find the best way to speed around the town centre is on two wheels, so I loaded up the panniers and took the racer into Edinburgh. After climbing from the coast to George Street I needed a wee break, so I sat in the sunshine outside the coffee bar in St Andrews Square.


One Americano later and I had sketched this pen and watercolour drawing of my workhorse.

Thanks to the car, a new view from the bike

Calton Hill from Queen's Park
Calton Hill from Queen’s Park

Today I had to take the car into the garage. I am now awaiting the dreaded call to tell me what is wrong with it and how much it will cost to put it right.

But on the plus side I put the bike in the boot and cycled from Seafield to work in between Queen’s Park and Arthur’s Seat. This was my view through the park to Calton Hill, with Holyrood Palace below and the old Royal High School to the left.

Now, fingers crossed for some relatively good news from the garage…

Pause for thanks

Usually just before I get on my bike in the morning,  I really can’t be bothered, when it’s cold outside then the warmth of the car or bus can seem very appealing.

But after a couple of minutes cycling, once I’ve warmed up a bit and past the crowded bus stop I feel more awake. I race along side the stationary traffic and turn into Clark Road to see the sun rising over the beautiful Edinburgh skyline and Arthur’s Seat.

So thanks to the trusty bike that wakes me up and sends me to work with a positive outlook, even if I sometimes don’t seem too eager!