Belfast Bikes: The highs and lows of day one of the bike-share scheme launch
Did you get on your bike today?
After weeks of behind the scenes pedal work - Belfast's bike share scheme has finally launched.
Almost 1,500 have signed up to the scheme which got underway today but it wasn't all free-wheeling fun as by 10am a docking station it had been reported that a terminal was out of order due to vandalism.
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And in typical fashion after a week of sunshine the bikes got their formal welcome to Northern Ireland with a hail shower.
But there were many who enjoyed their first day on the bikes and have set the bar high for the rest as one adventurous cyclist took a ride up Divis Mountain.
Gavin Browne tweeted a photo of his Belfast Bike at the top of the mountain.
Some 300 bicycles will be available to hire from 30 docking stations dotted all over Belfast.
It costs £20 to register as an annual member or you can pay £5 for a three-day membership, aimed at tourists and other visitors to the city.
The first 30 minutes of any hire are free of charge and then there are small incremental charges from as little as 50p for half an hour.
A spokeswoman for the scheme said it has got off to a "fantastic start" but identified a few "day one technical issues" which are being worked on.
A cyclist reported that a bike wouldn't release from the Cromac Street docking station.
Meanwhile the terminal at Central Station/ Stewart Street will be out of order for three weeks due to vandalism.
A hail storm in Belfast. The perfect way to inaugurate #belfastbikes.— Jake O'Kane (@JakeOKane) April 27, 2015
In a statement the spokeswoman said: "We have had several Bike Share Scheme representatives from NSL, the operators of the Scheme, at various stations this morning to offer any assistance to cyclists.
"We shall have more representatives at key stations tomorrow morning, who will be happy to assist with any bike related issues."
Further reading:New Belfast Bikes made me think I was Audrey Hepburn Belfast public bike share scheme gets £300k Coca Cola sponsorship deal On yer bike: Belfast's public cycle share scheme is wheeled out Get pedalling: Belfast's new city bikes are wheeled out Ditch the car and cycle or walk to work urges charity
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