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The Return of May Day London Critical Mass


Yesterday's May Day bike ride was excellent, here is my report.


Last night I got to the South Bank early for the 12th anniversary London Critical Mass and distributed a load of flyers for the May Day Ride. Many of the people I spoke to said they were planning to show up and there was quite a lot of interest in hooking up with the Space Hijackers event. Bring food along for a picnic (weather permitting) and ideas for things to do, places to visit etc.


Someone has posted a Mayday Ride flyer on Indymedia. Please print and distribute.


At the STWC march ten days ago there were at least two different flyers being distributed which mentioned May Day Critical Mass in London. So it looks like it is happening! Meeting point is outside the NFT cafe on London's South Bank at 11am. I hope the weather is favourable and am looking forward to the possibility of a picnic as cool as the one we had in 2003.

I have been looking into what else people have planned for May Day in London.


I have been trying to predict whether there will be a May Day Critical Mass in London this year. Well for a start there does seem to be a bit of a tradition to be upheld. The first Mass I ever went on was on Wednesday May 1st 2002 when we met up in Hyde Park. In 2003 Mayday fell on a Thursday and again there was a Critical Mass in London (see this report by Monsieur Hulot).

The regular monthly Mass on Friday April 30th 2004 was a special occasion, celebrating 10 years of London Critical Mass. With all the preparations required to make the 10th anniversary event a success nobody made much effort to promote a May Day Mass. This was compounded by the fact that people were not clear whether it should be on Saturday May 1st (the day after the regular Mass) or on the early May Bank Holiday on Monday May 3rd, so it is not surprising that no significant Mass occurred. Fast forward to 2005 and (remembering the previous year's success) people again made an extra effort to promote the anniversary ride which fell on Friday April 29th. The effort paid off with another big Mass but as in 2004 there didn't seem to be much enthusiasm for a May Day ride. I certainly wasn't up for it because I was busy preparing for Cycleogical - a G8 Bike Ride benefit gig at RampART on Sunday May 1st. Critical Mass did happen in other cities in the UK on May Day 2005 though, including Manchester and Bradford (see this Indymedia Euromayday roundup).

So what about 2006? I feel like it is time to revive the tradition of a London May Day Critical Mass and this year there will be no confusion over dates - May Day falls on the early May Bank Holiday. This leaves two clear days between the regular Friday Mass and a potential May Day Mass and most people won't even need to book a day off work! Furthermore, it seems that there is renewed interest in organising one or more significant May Day events in Central London this year, and what better way to get involved than by cycling to them in a big posse:-)

There has already been at least one proposal for a 2006 May Day mass in London. It appeared in this post to the cm-london list, and in the ensuing discussion a time and meeting place were suggested (11am outside NFT Cafe under Waterloo Bridge). Someone said they were going to get some leaflets done up and since there have been no objections so far I am assuming that it is a goer.

I am about to post a link to this page on the cm-london list and I suggest that anyone who wants to see the Mass return to London this May Day should just get on with promoting it.

Big up the Critical Massive! Ian Gregory 2010