Enjoy riding and campaigning together with Camcycle

This article was published in 2022, in Magazine 156.

Rosie HumphreyCamcycle is an open, welcoming community of people who are interested in how cycling can improve our region. We know that choosing active travel for daily journeys is a good thing to do: it improves physical and mental health, lowers congestion and reduces pollution – and in these ways helps the wider community to achieve some of its most pressing social and environmental goals.

Throughout the year, we organise events where everyone can ride together. In this issue, you can find out about September’s Festival of Cycling which includes family-friendly rides as well as our Cargo Carnival – a fantastic parade of bikes to showcase the different ways in which cycling can be used to carry people and products.

Helping other local organisations achieve their aims is another priority for us. Our Zero Carbon Streets campaign provides support for groups which put their feet to the pedals in order to bring about positive change. Sometimes, this simply involves raising awareness of their community work: in this edition, we hear from Bury St Edmunds Rickshaw, G-Whizz, Cambridge Bike Party, Sassy Ladies Huntingdon and FLAB North Cambridgeshire – all groups that organise rides to promote social inclusion. At other times, we share our learning and advice with those working for change, such as the group from Swavesey Parish Council looking at options to improve cycling and walking in their village. We also actively encourage people to engage with key political decisions – most recently Cambridge’s road network hierarchy review and the Combined Authority’s Local Transport and Connectivity Plan.

As a charity, fundraising for all these kinds of work is essential: for the next Big Give Christmas Challenge we’ll be focusing on supporting others to remove barriers to cycling. Articles on exclusionary barriers in Histon and Peterborough illustrate why this is so important in widening access to all kinds of cycle and rider.

With over 1,600 members, four permanent staff, periodic interns and a committed board of trustees, we know that when we work together, great things can be achieved. Years of shared campaigning experience informs our work and if you’d like to discover more, consider joining us as a first step. If you’re a member thinking about how to extend your involvement, the opportunity to join our board of trustees is on the agenda.

Whatever your background, ability or commitment to cycling, we hope that the autumn will bring some pleasant opportunities to ride – perhaps together with us!

Rosie Humphrey, Camcycle editor