2019: Broadening Our Reach

This article was published in 2019, in Magazine 145.

Cambridge Festival of Cycling

After the success of the first Cambridge Festival of Cycling, we aimed for an even bigger, better festival in 2019, broadening the festival’s appeal with new partners and events

Once again, we began the festival with a Camcycle social ride (1), this time to Milton Country Park for a picnic. We met many new people including families who said we encouraged them to cycle further than they usually do and explore a new area of Cambridge.

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We teamed up again with CTC Cambridge who added the ‘Hought’n Back’ ride (2) to Houghton Mill to their programme of events, attracting several new faces.

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Our interns brought an unstoppable energy to the month, designing and delivering two new events: CamcycleTech at the Cambridge Museum of Technology (3) which featured high-profile speakers such as the cycle designer Mike Burrows, and the Handlebards at Childerley (4), a unique cycling theatre company who performed Much Ado about Nothing. We continued partnerships from last year, promoting a cycling to work exhibition from the Cambridgeshire Collection at Cambridge Central Library (5) and a new event at the Museum of Cambridge.

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At the end of the month, we celebrated cargo cycling with a screening of the film Motherload and our flagship event, the Camcycle Cargo Carnival (6, 7) which saw nearly a hundred people join the pedalpowered parade around the city centre and hundreds more enjoy the stalls on Lammas Land.

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We also teamed up with Tees to draw the winners of our summer CamcycleQuest cycling treasure hunt (8).

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A huge thank you to our sponsors, partners, members and volunteers for making the festival a success – we couldn’t do it without you. See you again in September 2020!

CamcycleQuest: cycling fun for all the family

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Question: What activity in Cambridge can be enjoyed by three generations of family, stretching them physically and mentally?

Answer: The CamcycleQuest from Camcycle and Tees. In September the Secher grandparents, daughter, son-inlaw and two grandsons (7 and 9) completed the quest.

I picked up a brochure and entry form at the monthly Camcycle meeting and one Sunday morning we all set off. From the start on Parker’s Piece there was plenty to argue about – and age turned out not to equal wisdom! We all discovered new backstreets and alleys we had not ridden down before and everyone was responsible for getting some of the answers right.

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CamcycleQuest was well thought out. The answers were challenging – sufficiently ambiguous to require discussion – and the distance covered was perfect for a day out. It was only a pity that it happened during a very busy Cambridge Festival of Cycling and perhaps did not get the publicity and attention it merited.

Only the numerical answers counted towards the prizes, motivating anyone keener on winning than taking part to skip the other questions. That would have been a shame as they too had been cleverly thought out. For those with less than a full day to spend, a shorter quest might be popular as an alternative, but these are minor suggestions for what was an excellent initiative!

I do hope another quest will be organised next year and the Sechers are all looking forward to it already!

David Secher