Strong Island Co.

Bikes & Cycling

Safer Portsmouth | Bicycles

Portsmouth as a city possesses a high number of bicycle enthusiasts. Whether you are using your bike to commute to work, racing or just getting from A to B. Sadly bicycle theft is a relatively easy crime to commit. With their increased usage over the summer months we need to do as much as we can to deter criminals and assist the Police in recovering the bike if the worst is to happen and your bike is stolen. There are some simple steps to follow…

* Get a good bike lock (preferably a D-Lock) and attach your bike to something secure, e.g. a bike rack or a lamppost.
* Always lock your bicycle, even if you are only leaving it for a couple of minutes.
* Have your bike’s frame security-marked or engraved.
* Keep your bike in a secure garage or shed. Keep the door locked and keep it out of public view.
* If you have quick-release wheels, lock them up as well or take them with you.
* Remove lights from the bike and take them with you.
* Register your bike with schemes such as Immobilise or Bike Register.

One of the biggest problems the Police encounter is the victim being unable to offer a full description of their bike. This makes it much more difficult to identify it as stolen, please take the time to make a note of your make, model and frame number. The frame number can be found in a number of places including the head tube, under bottom bracket, seat tube and down tube.

The Safer Neighbourhood Policing Teams in Portsmouth are really pro-active and offer a FREE security marking events. You can find out your nearest one by contacting your local Safer Neighbourhood Team, you can find their details by entering your postcode on the Hampshire Constabulary website Here are just a few of the events that you can take your bike along to be marked.

You are likely to have seen the brightly painted unclaimed bikes locked up around the city. These were put there by Portsmouth Police to encourage cyclist to lock their bikes up securely. The bikes were placed around the city, particularly where there are increased reports of bike thefts.

Northern Portsmouth
Cycle marking events

Southern Portsmouth
Milton Park, Mondays (13.00 hours – 15.00 hours)
25th May | 22nd June | 20th July | 17th August

St Mary’s Hospital, Thursdays (11.00 hours – 14.00 hours)
28th May | 25th June | 23rd July | 20th August

Canoe Lake, Sundays (11.00 hours – 14.00 hours)
7th June | 5th July | 2nd August

Eastney Community Centre, Thursdays (19.00 hours – 21.00 hours)
11th June | 6th August

Hampshire Police

Southsea Skatepark Birthday Weekend

This weekend sees Southsea Skatepark celebrate their birthday with a weekend of competitions and fun activities for BMX, skateboarding and more. The skatepark is one of the oldest in the UK and this weekend will see some events that celebrate this heritage such as the vintage BMX crew in attendance and, for the first time, a race to see who can get to the end of the Snakerun the fastest. NOT easy. There will also be the always popular Bored of Southsea Game of SKATE plus best trick on the box, longest ollie, highest bunnyhop and even slalom too.

Strong Island Clothing Co will be holding a mini ramp competition with a bunch of prizes for the winners plus a prize for the best trick. This and the Game of SKATE will be happening on Sunday afternoon.

The weekender runs on both Saturday and Sunday and is FREE for spectators and normal entrance fee if you want to skate or ride. See you there!

Southsea Skatepark Birthday Weekend

Mark Webb, Jack Watts and Troy Hayward at the Southsea Skatepark

Southsea Skatepark by Josh Knill

Southsea Skatepark by Hampshire Aerial Photos

Getting In The Mood For Summer With Ye Olde Bike Shoppe

The Sunny days have started rolling back into town and once again our city is full of vibrancy. The sun brings BBQ’s, beach lounging and most importantly bicycle riding.

Stuart Trett of Ye Olde Bike Shoppe, has been knocking up wonderful, tailor made creations for years now and with a serious motivation to give you the bike you want and will love and cherish, it is the perfect place to find what you are looking for.

Ye Olde Bike Shoppe has been described by many as a place to go for good advice, good service and great value and we are always keen to see what else Mr Trett will come up with next.

Find the bike shop on Albert Road in Southsea and pick up something lovely for the summery summer that is soon to be upon us. Getting out and about and out of your car’s is not only a great way to exercise and enjoy the great outdoors but also a fantastic way to unwind and relax and what better way to do it then in style!

Find Ye Olde Bike Shoppe on Facebook or on Twitter.

Ye Olde

Ye Olde

Ye Olde

Ye Olde


The BANFF Mountain Film Festival At The King’s Theatre

Attracting sell out audiences across the globe, the world’s most prestigious mountain film festival visited Portsmouth for the first time last night with a selection of extraordinary short films from the world’s leading adventure film makers. Exhilarating and thought provoking, it was a must-see for anyone with a spirit of adventure!

Introducing individuals such as, Danny Macaskill, a world famous trail rider and Wilfred Thesiger, one of Britain’s top explorers and writers, the series of short films are not only inspirational and motivating but also utterly breath taking to watch.

The Kings Theatre hosted the festival and will support the event in the future, boasting that it is an exceptional performance of incredible individuals.

The festival draws together experiences of the environment, mountain culture and the outdoors and is a fantastic watch for anyone who has a passion for the extreme, encouraging all of us to embrace, experience and explore.

See the BANFF website for upcoming tour dates.






The Legitimate Road User Photography Project by Andrew Hayward – Cyclists Get Involved

We’ve featured the fine photography work of local photographer Andrew Hayward on numerous occasions over the years, from revealing glimpses of the secret Dockyard with a large format camera through to his captivating series of petrol stations at night. Andrew’s latest personal photography project is entitled The Legitimate Road User and focuses on cyclists, predominantly those who cycle to work, with a view to raise driver awareness that they are a legitimate road user and have the right to use the roads.

For this photography project Andrew aims to create a range of portraits of people with their bike, wearing what they would wear when cycling on the road. Andrew is looking for cyclists who would like to get involved and have their photo taken. For taking part, each cyclist will receive a free print of themselves and be invited along to any future exhibitions for the project. Participants would have to be from the South Hampshire area, preferably Portsmouth, Southsea, Gosport, Hayling Island, Chichester etc.

If this is something that interests you then email Andrew at to find out more.

The Legitimate Road User Photography Project by Andrew Hayward

Open Meeting for Making Space for Cycling

The next meeting of Portsmouth Cycle Forum will be at 7pm on Thursday 12th February 2015 in Park Building, University of Portsmouth on King Henry I Street. The meeting will take the form of a debate, discussing how to make the main routes in Portsmouth safe and welcoming for cyclists. Portsmouth has an exceptionally high rate of cycle casualties and most of these casualties occur on major roads which have 30mph speed limits.

Portsmouth Cycle Forum recently launched their cycle strategy, A City to Share, which proposes that road space be reallocated from motor vehicles to bicycles to enable a step-change improvement in cycle casualty rates and the number of people getting around by bike. Exactly what changes need to be made to find and repurpose that road space were not specified.

For this meeting Portsmouth Cycle Forum have invited their members to propose ideas for how these 30mph roads can be changed to make them safer and more attractive for cyclists, whilst still offering good motor vehicle access to the city. 3 or 4 ideas will be selected for short presentations on how to eliminate conflict between cyclists and motor vehicles on Portsmouth’s 30mph routes – each idea will then be opened to debate.

The meeting is open to all.

Should Private Hire Vehicles be Allowed in Bus Lanes?

Portsmouth City Council are considering allowing mini cabs (officially called Private Hire Vehicles) to use the bus lanes in the city. The lanes are currently open to use by buses, taxis (Hackney Carriages) and cyclists. Portsmouth Cycle Forum have today published their response to this possible transport proposal with some statistics that show this could be a dangerous prospect for cyclists in Portsmouth:

“Portsmouth City Council is considering allowing Private Hire Vehicles to use bus lanes. To use technical terminology, a Taxi is a Hackney Carriage, and a Minicab is a Private Hire Vehicle (PHV). A Hackney Carriage licence allows the driver to pick up fares on the street, and a few other perks, for example, in Portsmouth, Taxis may use bus lanes, but PHVs ay not. Recently it has been proposed that PHVs should be allowed to use Bus Lanes. In addition to buses and taxis, bicycles are also permitted to use bus lanes.

You may know that Portsmouth has more cycling accidents per capita than most other cities, but it may surprise you to learn that (according to PCC figures) Taxis and PHVs are responsible for a disproportionately large number of cycling accidents. Taxis and PHVs represent just under 0.9% of registered vehicles, but are involved in 8% of all reported cycle collisions: and whilst cyclists make up only 4.7% of traffic in Portsmouth, they account for 21% of Taxi/PHV related casualties. Disturbingly, the most common contributory factor is the “driver failing to look properly”.

Allowing PHVs into cycle lanes would result in more occasions when cyclists and PHVs are in close proximity, and thus increase the likelihood of cyclist casualties in the one place where they currently have some protection from general traffic. Portsmouth Cycle Forum therefore conclude that in its current form this proposal is a terrible idea.”

You can read the full, detailed response from Portsmouth Cycle Forum HERE.

Let us know your thoughts on this.

Portsmouth Cycle Forum

Mark Webb, Jack Watts and Troy Hayward at the Southsea Skatepark

A little while back Southsea Skatepark had a BMX comp and Epic TV have dropped an edit of the day with some heavy footage of locals and Total BMX riders Mark Webb, Jack Watts and Troy Hayward. Mark Webb is still coming back for what for most would be a career ending injury…not that you would know it with the park getting a battering like a winter storm. Have a watch below:

Mark Webb, Jack Watts and Troy Hayward at the Southsea Skatepark

Love the Skatepark Day at Southsea Skatepark on Saturday 25th October

This Saturday Southsea Skatepark is holding a special event inspired by the park’s long and fascinating heritage, ‘Love the Skatepark Day’. The park is inviting all generation of riders, skaters, spectators and friends to come and share the love, the day includes:

– 70′s Slalom Skateboarding
– Old School BMX Meet Up / Best Old School Bike
– Best trick contests for BMX, Skateboarding, Inline and Scooter
– BBQ Hosted by Southsea Skatepark Cafe
– DJs and more

Admission is £6 for the day and if you have a rad fancy dress outfit you will get a free burger from the Cafe.

Southsea Skatepark by Hampshire Aerial Photos

Southsea Skatepark by Matt Ankers

Southsea Skatepark by Matt Ankers

The Ruby Ride Cycle Challenge

The Rowans Hospice have launched their third annual Ruby Ride cycle event, the sponsored bike ride in and around the Portsmouth and Hampshire area. With the choice of three great routes; Leisure (18 miles), Challenge (30 miles) and Epic (65 miles) with refreshment and picnic opportunity stops along the way.

The Ruby Ride will have staggered start times from 9.30am and all three routes will start and finish at Lakeside North Harbour (adjacent to IBM) All participants will receive a t-shirt, refreshments en route and a medal on completion.

Sunday 14th September starting and finishing at Lakeside. Registration costs £20 for adults, £10 for children 5 to 15 and free for under 5’s but must be accompanied by an adult.

For more information on how you can get involved in this great event please call 023 9223 7142 or email

The Ruby Ride Poster

The Ruby Ride

The Ruby Ride
The Ruby Ride photos were taken by Image Creative Limited.

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Do we need to spell it out?

Letters from Ian Parmiter & Photo by Claire Sambrook

The Langstone Ark Project

The Langstone Ark is a project being run by Langstone Harbour’s Environment Officer Louise MacCallum that went live on-line in August. The project aims to create a digital collection of all the animals and plants associated with Langstone Harbour, by asking harbour users, visitors, and anyone else with an interest in the harbour to send digital photographs of wildlife taken on the water, or around the shoreline.

So far, over 150 photographs have been contributed to the project, and nearly 100 species are now represented. There are literally 1000’s of species of animal and plant to be found around the harbour however, so there are plenty of gaps in the project left to fill!

Autumn is a great time of year to see wildlife around Langstone Harbour, with thousands of migratory birds beginning to arrive and beautiful fungi springing up on many of the wildlife reserves dotted around the shoreline.

For more information about the project visit the Langstone Harbour Board’s brand new website at and send photographic contributions to

Below are just a few of the contributors photographs so far, and you can see all of them over at the gallery HERE.

Kestrel by B.D. McGregor

Little Tern by Mark Milum

Grey Seal by Nick Lyon

Aerial Photographs of Portsmouth

Webb Aviation have hundreds of aerial photographs to purchase from all over the country. Click the link to see the Portsmouth Aerial Gallery and view photos from over Gosport looking across Gunwharf, all the way down to the Hayling Ferry.

aerial photograph by

aerial photograph by

Created Local – John Illsley

We got sent a link to John Illsley’s website recently, loads of amazing photos including many from all over Southsea and Portsmouth, be sure to check it out. Here are a few examples:

John Illsley

John Illsley


I’m not a BMXer and only cruised on my Raleigh Burner to get to skate spots when I was young, but i’ve always had huge admiration the those guys. They’re freakin’ nuts. I remember Freestylin’ mag when I was younger and would always have a flick through if I could. I loved the whole style thing surrounding BMXing in the 80’s. Mag wheels, crazy colour co-ordinated bikes and big attitude.

Well, you can relive all the that, at least to a visual extent, in the form of the Freestylin’ book. Some of you may have already seen this but may not know you can download the 158 page PDF here.

Go straight to page 106 for an article on Craig Campbell at Southsea Skatepark. Sick.

Vintage Photography – Sunny Southsea

Following on from photos of The bandstand and Tennis Courts the other week, here’s another scan from Khalid.

Back before East Jet in the late 1940s, early 1950s people flocked to Southsea seafront. Check the beach huts near Canoe Lake. Dozens of them and the Paddling Pool which is now occupied by the Sealife Centre. Love the little train to the right of the picture. Click for a closer look.

Hitler’s reaction to The Registry closing down.

This is just classic. I’ve seen a few others before. I think I saw one about accidentally using Arial instead of Helvetica, funny stuff. This one however is just hilarious, if you know the Portsmouth pub scene. More so if you’ve ever ben a student.

Southsea Show 1970

Image: eBay

The Old Portsmouth and The New Southsea

Gareth Colwell sent us these amazing scans from a vintage book called ‘The Old Portsmouth and The New Southsea. “It was an old book of my Grandads’ we found when going through some of his old stuff that had been packed away for years. I love the paintings and the written bits, especially describing Southsea Common as “a dismal spot in the old days. Footpads and cut-throats roamed at night, and a murderer hung in chains on the edge of the shingle”

A really interesting read so I won’t say anymore and let the book do all the talking. Check out the full set of scans over at Gareths Flickr.

Big Rave Night

Clearly ‘that top group from Portsmouth The Parkas’ used to rave hard at the licensed bar The Drill Hall in Camberley back in ’67. Awesome stuff for sure.

Flyer Seen : Pompey Pop Pix

Strong Island Clothing Co.