Your Motorcycle Parking

Out on our travels we had the occasion to call into Homebase on the Bangor Ring Road.  Not a bathroom or kitchen hunting expedition but to purchase some large bolts for fitting a vice to the bench in the garage.

Digressing slightly the vice is a Record Steel 35 Made In England, it is really heavy duty and was fitted in my late father’s garage and must be circa early sixties, I can remember it since I was knee high and that’s a long while ago.  The bench it is being fitted on was built to support the vice and any subsequent hack sawing and filing!

Anyway,  you may not be aware but there is a new Sainsbury’s being built beside Homebase and driving to park up, our eagle eyes spotted a sign which had a motorcycle logo on it.

On closer examination Sainsbury’s have built a dedicated motorcycle parking bay opposite the front doors of the new store.

The bay, large in size has blockpaving as its surface area, the surrounding car park has a “tarmac” surface, so no sinking sidestands.  The block paving differentiates the motorcycle parking space from the car parking with its bright orange sign and bordered by a raised concrete kerb.

The front end of the motorcycle parking bay has two bollards which would assist in delineating the parking bay in stopping other vehicle drivers parking in it, however the “entrances” do not have bollards which may lead to other vehicle drivers parking in the bay,  just to get a couple of feet nearer to the shop entrance.

There does not appear to be any secure locking points but with the bay close to the entrance, in an open “public area”, the CCTV cameras, that we are sure will be in operation that would pick up mis-use.

We will still give Sainsbury’s a ten out of ten  for providing dedicated motorcycle parking.

Motorcycle Parking Page

On our motorcycle parking page – Click Here – we have stated that, “Some supermarkets and shopping centres provide parking space for motorcycles, these provisions seem to be haphazard.”

While outside commercial operations, there is no central provision of the location of motorcycle parking facilities which can be viewed with knowledge of these facilities and appear to be down to local knowledge or word of mouth.  This does not help if a motorcyclist is not from the area and especially for visitors from outside of Northern Ireland.

Through their industrious hard work, we reported that the BMW Club Ulster Section had done some lobbying and letter writing regarding parking, “Campbell Owens the son of one the club’s esteemed club members, Bill Owens, has managed to get some very interesting information on the legalities of parking your treasured motorcycle in our capital city without incurring the wrath of a traffic warden or pedestrians.”

He shows that writing to your local politician, in this case, Chris Lyttle from the Alliance Party works. A letter was issued from Conor Murphy, Minister for Department for Regional Development (DRD), (pre Northern Ireland Assembly elections) with some informative points regarding where motorcyclists can park, how much it will cost, and some plans for the future.

The DRD’s Roads Service advised that:

  •  Motorcycles can be parked in its kiosk operated car parks at a reduced rate of 50 pence for up to 4 hours parking and £1 over 4 hours.
  •  Motorcycles can also be parked free of charge in any Roads Service operated pay and display car parks, as long as they are parked wholly inside a marked bay.

In terms of on-street provision, Roads Service advised that they have “Not yet provided any dedicated motorcycle parking facilities. However, it has recently produced internal guidance which is intended to facilitate on-street parking provision for motorcycles. Initially, given the growing demand and competition for kerbside parking in towns and cities, the provision will be made on a two year trial basis.”

“These trials will see the conversion of existing standard paid/ticketed parking bays into bays intended solely for motorcycles / scooters.”

“In order to encourage both the use of this type of parking facility and motorcycling as a form of travel, these bays will be provided free of charge. Roads Service is currently making arrangements to survey potential users to inform them of the decision making process, in terms of the numbers and positioning of such bays. It is intended to start this stage of the exercise early in the next financial year.”

We added that riders currently park in “dead spaces” or on “pavements” where pedestrian safety is not affected, or other road users obstructed.

This type of parking should not be seen as detrimental and should be investigated further as a means of utilising space. Roads Service could look at the benefits that motorcycling offer in improving transport options and thus increase confidence for riders so that their journey’s end is parking near their point of arrival.

Let Us Know

If are you aware of other shopping facilities, centres or other provided dedicated motorcycle parking, we would love to hear where they are and a picture paints a thousand words, if you can let us know.

Leave your comments here or email


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  1. I wish my local Sainsbury’s had such good bike parking! We get a 5m x 5m square of tarmac bounded on two sides by parent and toddler spaces, so door flinging damage and obstructive parents are the norm… Thats assuming the b’stards haven’t parked to obstruct the narrow corner entance/exit their bays create…
    Thanks Neil might be new policy when building new stores – we wish – or a local initiative.

  2. Ivan McClintock says

    HI Trevor, Ref your paragraph on Motorcycle parking spaces at Shopping centres or shops. I live in Londonderry & I am only aware of one shop with a Motorcycle parking area, This is at the Supervalue/ Franklongs shopping centre at woodburn in the waterside area. (Beside the waterside P.S.N.I station) Its big enough for 4 bikes, but to small for a car, maybe this is Supervalues policy, I will check out other stores.
    Thanks Ivan good to hear would be interesting to find out if it is policy and what the other stores have. Any pictures you can take and forward would be great.

  3. Regarding the allocation of parking spaces for motorcycles, I see Tesco at Newtownbreda have a designated parking area for motorcycles.
    This is a great innovation but it comes with an added problem and I have decided to approach the manager of the said store to ask how I may avail of this facility.
    I cannot decide if the motorists who park there cant read or it is some sort of obstacle course and my machine is actually meant to be placed on the roof of one of these abandoned cars.
    Answers on a postcard !!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Thanks Robert let us know the outcome as this seems to be a problem along with but maybe not as “uncivilised” as those who park in a disabled space when they are not disabled or all those mother and toddler bays when no kids on board!
    Happy roof parking……….

  4. Motorcycle Parking at Bloomfields Shopping Center Bangor.
    Fancy sign, secure parking rail and space fit for cycles only.
    Access is across pavement over kerb.
    Motorcycle parked in hatched area across entrance where motorcyclists naturally migrate too.

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