There are Cycle Friendly Employers in Cambridge, and commuters in the Bristol area are encouraged by Project Bike. In Derbyshire there is By Cycle, and in other parts of the country there are BUGs, Recycles and Cyber Cycles. Just a few of the 62 schemes which last year received government funding to encourage cycling. I realise I am very fortunate to be working in Cambridge, with its high percentage of cyclists. Other ‘Cycle Challenge’ co-ordinators are working in much more difficult environments: areas with absolutely no culture of cycle commuting, no cycle routes at all, and very busy roads.
To offer encouragement and exchange some ideas, I invited representatives of all 62 schemes to Cambridge for a conference one Saturday at the end of November 1996.
My thanks to members of Cambridge Cycling Campaign and the Cycle Co-ordinators who gave me so much support. They chaired workshop sessions, took notes, tweaked projectors and curtains, poured tea, and provided accommodation. David Earl highlighted ‘the good, the bad and the ugly’ aspects of cycling in Cambridge with his closing presentation and with a Sunday morning bike ride. We learned a lot in a friendly atmosphere: how to impress employers (look smart), how to set up a Bicycle Users Group (look out for BUGs in Cambridge), how bikes on buses work in USA (no problems) and how to be dynamic with publicity (it’s a cyclist’s bike, so bike it?).