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"It's not quite the birthday present Boris Johnson might have wished his bikes. Yesterday, days after the Barclays Cycle Hire scheme celebrated its third anniversary, the RMT union announced that members working for Serco, which moves around and repairs the bikes, will strike next week over shift patterns and pay.
"But it’s not the only challenge facing the chunky grey machines.
"Complaints about docking stations being either full or empty are commonplace, an impression borne out in official figures recently obtained by Lib-Dem Assembly member Caroline Pidgeon. I’ve stopped trying to ride hire bikes into the West End, so hard is it to find free spaces."