We are delighted to announce some exciting Inclusive Cycling updates. We are slowly bringing things back to life after a huge amount of work from our team to get things COVID-secure. Scroll down to read on - or click the links below to skip to the relevant project:
Inclusive cycling update
First things first: What does “Inclusive Cycling” mean?
Inclusive Cycling is the name we give to our projects that work with people who experience more barriers to cycling than most. They include:
- Two’s Company (joyful, liberating tandem rides for visually impaired and disabled people)
- Bike Generation (fun cycling activities and mechanical skills to equalise opportunity for young people)
- Our Over 55s cycling group
- Cycle Buddies
- Our short cycling courses for ‘beginners’ and ‘returners’.
We were gutted to have to put most of our projects on hold during the lockdown. It was not a decision we took lightly, but the health and safety of our staff, volunteers and service-users came first. Of course, the whole time we were working hard to find ways to offer cycling opportunities to people in a safe way so that they could use cycling to deal with the stresses and pressures of lockdown. We are delighted to say that we have most of our projects up and running again, in some shape or form!
Expanding the reach of Inclusive Cycling
We’ve just been joined by our new Inclusive Cycling Manager, the fab Steve. Steve has worked in the voluntary sector for almost 30 years and has a wealth of experience in the fields of homelessness, drugs and alcohol and community-focused projects. Amongst his many tasks, he’ll be exploring ways to harness the extra interest in cycling due to COVID-19. He’ll also help expand our offer to meet emerging community needs, reach more diverse groups - particularly communities of colour – and new geographic areas. We are delighted to welcome him and excited to see what’s in store for Inclusive Cycling… Watch this space!
New courses announced! Cycling for Beginners and Returners
After having to stop before we got started in March, we are now (re)launching our short cycling courses! These are for adults who want to learn to ride a bike - and those that haven’t ridden in a long time. Our experienced instructors are supportive and friendly, helping you build cycle skills and confidence. Both types of courses will run once a week for 6 weeks. We’re keeping groups small and will be following the Government’s COVID-19 safety guidelines. Best of all the courses are free and we provide bicycles.
Our courses will cover:
• Cycle skills
• Road awareness skills
• Basic bike maintenance
• Route planning
• Opportunities to access more support from us, to help you keep cycling after the course has finished.
• Access to an affordable bike that’s right for you (we’ll help you find the perfect fit).
Where and when?
Courses will take place in the Bristol area. Dates and locations will be confirmed in the next few weeks. We are likely to run one set of courses in mid-October 2020 and then again from March 2021.
To register your interest in our short courses - and be kept-up-to-date - click here.
Bike Generation: Our youth project
Our Bike Generation project is based at three adventure playgrounds in Bristol’s Easton, Southmead and Lockleaze. At Felix Road Adventure Playground in Easton, we’ve been working hard on our shipping container, which stores bikes and tools for the project. It got its finishing touches this week, just in time for the Autumn weather. The new canopy over the container (pictured at the top), is a game-changer, helping us to continue running our outdoor sessions as the wetter weather kicks in.
Not only does the container provide secure bike storage – but it’s also a workshop where young people come to learn basic bike mechanics as we fix-up the bikes brought in from the community. It also enables kids without bikes to access a set of wheels so they can take part in our sessions: Our two Youth Workers organise games, skills sessions and group rides throughout the year. Sessions at Felix Road are on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 3:30 pm. Click here to find out more about Bike Generation. Thanks to support from our generous funders, our sessions are all free of charge.
Cycle Buddies are go!
Our Cycle Buddies project was one of the first to get going again, as it doesn’t involve cycling in larger groups. The project is open to anyone aged 18+ in Bristol who’d like to give cycling a go but aren’t sure about going it alone. Thanks to funding from Wesport we can offer this service free of charge.
We now have a brilliant team of volunteers, trained and ready to help you make your first steps into cycling. They have excellent knowledge of cycle-friendly routes, green open spaces and short-cuts so you can discover how easy it is to hop on a bike and get from home to wherever you want.
We can also support those that are feeling socially isolated and would like some company on a ride. Click here to find out more and to sign up for sessions or contact Julie@lifecycleuk.org.uk.
Help us help others to cycle
All of our Inclusive Cycling projects rely on funding from generous donors. If you, like us, believe that cycling is a wonderful activity that should be open to everyone regardless of income, ability, or any other barriers, please consider donating to our projects so we can reach out to more people. Whether it’s a one-off donation, or a small, monthly contribution, any help you can give makes a huge difference.
Click here to help us help others to cycle. Thank you.