This month we talk to Wolf Simpson about how using bikes and more recently e-bikes has transformed his mobility and how far he can travel without suffering pain.
Thanks to everyone who has given us feedback on the Cycle Colchester website, your comments have been really helpful. We would still like to hear from more of you, so if you can spare a few minutes please complete our short survey.
In light of Wolf’s inspirational story, we share some e-bike brands and local suppliers as recommended by local Cycle Colchester subscribers.
Events this month include Freshers Fair at the University, St Helena Hospice’s charity bike ride, Cycle Colchester at the Black History month event at Firstsite, and a family bike ride from Greenstead.
Sustrans are looking for more volunteers locally, go along to their ‘Tappas and tea’ event at Firstsite to find out more.
Bikeability sessions are on offer in the October half term, including Learn to Ride and combined levels 1 & 2. They will be held at Gosbecks primary school in Shrub End.
There is also the opportunity for one to one adult confidence sessions to build your skills and confidence cycling on roads where you live.
We share further lessons learnt from commuting to work; and in the wake of the Charlie Alliston case, we highlight Cycling UK’s concerns following the DfT’s announcement regarding an urgent review into cycling offences.
If you are taking part in Beat the Street, are you following their social media and have you signed up to their newsletter to receive info on latest bonus tap chances and more.
Finally we share with you Chris Juden's original thoughts on why cyclists prefer to keep moving, rather than stopping and starting!
Cycle Colchester newsletter/website revamp – your feedback
Please give us feedback on the Cycle Colchester website to help us revamp it and make sure it works for you and the rest of the community.
Recommended e-Bike brands and local suppliers
If Wolf’s story inspires you to investigate an electric bike, below are some e-bike brands and local suppliers who can help as recommended by local Cycle Colchester subscribers.
Just e bikes – suppliers in London and Leiston (Suffolk)
October half term Bikeability
Learn to Ride - 45 minute sessions for adults and children struggling to ride or who have never learnt to cycle are available Monday 23 October in the morning (£10 per trainee)
A FREE combined level 1 & 2 Bikeability course for children nine years and upwards is available on Wednesday 25 and Thursday 26 October 9am – 1pm (must attend both sessions) This course introduces children to cycling on quiet roads.
Both courses will take place at Gosbecks Primary school in Shrub End.
Adult confidence sessions
If you or someone you know would like to cycle more but needs a confidence boost for cycling on roads. You can book a 1 to 1 two hour sessions with a qualified cycling instructor for just £10.
Discounted deal for Layer Road families
Any families living on or off Layer Road, including Shrub End and St Michaels can receive adult cycle training or Learn to Ride for just £5. This is funded as part of the section 106 funding held by the council from the development of the former football ground, which is to be used to promote cycling in the local community.
If you live in this area mention your postcode along with the promo code from the Bikeability leaflet you will have received through your letterbox or via your child's primary school when you book, to receive the discount.
For more information and to book any of the courses email email@example.com
There are several events happening this month.
Saturday 7 October Freshers Fair bike sale and bike rides
With the start of the new University year, Re-Cycle will be selling good quality second hand bikes at Freshers Fair on the 7th October, along with reasonably priced locks, lights and other accessories.
A series of bike rides to boost confidence, show local routes and meet new people will be on offer every Wednesday after Freshers Fair throughout October.
Find out more about freshers bike rides.
Sunday 8th October – St Helena Hospice’s charity bike ride – still time to sign up or to volunteer to marshal. Find out more on their website
Saturday 14th October – Black History Month event at Firstsite. Cycle Colchester will be there offering flag making, pedal powered smoothies and an information stand – come for a fun day out and a chat with us!
Tuesday 24 October - Art of the Possible – family bike ride From Greenstead Library 10:30 – 12:30pm
ECC are running a family bike ride along low traffic / traffic-free routes, designed to boost confidence for a variety of audiences. Participants can be new to, or returning to, cycling. The ride aims to encourage regular cycling for all ages.
The ride will be relatively short and focus on leisurely, pleasant and practical routes without too many steep hills; they are not designed for sports riding or training for experienced cyclists. The rides will be 5 miles long with a break half way.
Find out more about the Greenstead bike ride.
Saturday 28th October - Sustrans in Essex ‘tappas & tea’
11am -3pm at Firstsite, Lewis Gardens, High St, Colchester.
Sustrans are the organisation who developed and continue to be the champions of the National Cycle Network. Almost 5million people use the National Cycle Network and despite its name the network isn’t just for cyclists it’s also popular with walkers, Joggers, parents with pushchairs, wheelchair users, and horse riders too. You can find a map of the National Cycle Network on the Sustrans website.
In Essex there are lots of Sections of National Cycle Network including around Colchester, Witham, Braintree, Great Dunmow, Stansted and Tilbury. So if you live near any of these and are interested in finding out more about Sustrans then come along on Saturday 28th October and get involved!
Feel free to bring a friend but please book your place by emailing Maria.firstname.lastname@example.org
More tips if you are going to start commuting by bike!
Following on from our commuter themed link last month, we share one cyclist’s thoughts on seven important lessons they learnt on the road.
Follow up to the Charlie Alliston case.
If you have been following the Charlie Alliston case you will be aware of the subsequent announcement by the Department for Transport that it will be conducting an “urgent review” into new offences of causing death by careless or dangerous cycling.
While understanding the motives behind such calls, Cycling UK has urged caution from legislators and commentators alike, pointing out new legislation relating solely to one mode of transport was “misguided” when the whole system relating to road traffic offences and sentencing was failing to work, particularly in the offences for careless and dangerous driving.
‘The proposed review of cycling offences needs to be carried out as part of the Government’s promised wider review of all road traffic offences and sentencing,’ says Cycling UK’s CEO Paul Tuohy.
You can read more about this important issue on Cycling UK’s blog.
Beat the street
If you are taking part in Beat the Streets we hope you are racking up those points for your chosen team! Keep an eye on the social media or sign up to the newsletter for latest bonus point chances, new, events and prizes. Happy Tapping!
The game is open until 8 November 2017.
Why cyclists are reluctant to stop and start!
If cycle lanes and paths that are not continuous causing you to stop and start frequently are a source of frustration to you, we share with you Chris Juden’s investigation into the principles of dynamics and motion that discourage us from using our brakes!
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Read Wolf's insirational story about how cycling has transformed his mobility. Find out about the e-bikes he has built, his campaigning for better cycle links particularly between towns and his lobbying for ebikes to be recognised as a mobility aid. 'Getting the bus is causing me big problems, but cycling is good. Going to work by bus I’m sitting down for an hour and a half and I’d have to take painkillers before going to work, but not when I’m cycling.'