This article was published in 2018, in Newsletter 138.
On Monday 7 May, record-breaking temperatures were recorded for the bank holiday and Camcycle was busy breaking its own records too, on our 12th annual Reach Ride. A huge band of cyclists of all ages assembled at the Guildhall for the official send-off by the Mayor of Cambridge and the number increased along the route with more and more happy cyclists keen to join in the fun. More than 100 cyclists, including many young children, joined us at the Green Dragon bridge, giving us a clue that the sunny day would bring out an unprecedented number of attendees. The crowd waved and rang their bells, giving a celebratory atmosphere as the first group of cyclists rode past. Our Executive Director, Roxanne De Beaux, had encouraged those who discovered potholes to yell ‘Pothole’ loudly to warn those behind them and this suggestion was enthusiastically embraced, with younger riders also enjoying the chance to create echoes in the tunnel under the A14 near Stow-cum-Quy.
There were many new riders this year, many of them very enthusiastic about the positive atmosphere of support and kindness with ‘lots of smiles and people helping each other out’. A new development for 2018 was a team of mechanics from Outspoken Cycles who repaired 22 punctures between them, as well as sorting out everything from chains to parts of cargo bikes. This was much appreciated by all who were helped back into the saddle and by our volunteer marshals who had more time to spend directing and helping cyclists along the route.
After an enjoyable sunny ride out to Reach, we counted an amazing 1,092 saddles (including two unicycles) in the village’s cycle park. As one supporter pointed out on Twitter, if most of those cyclists had completed the return trip from Cambridge, the aggregate distance pedalled was greater than the entire length of the equator! We are thrilled that this ride continues to go from strength to strength, attracting more riders and positive feedback each year. A typical comment was ‘What a fantastic day, The Reach Ride was just perfect. Thank you for this great organisation! My friends and I loved it!’ We hope to celebrate cycling with even more people next year, so save the date now and we’ll see you on Monday 6 May 2019. Meanwhile, if you have any feedback, stories or photos you’d like to share with us, please get in touch. Below is the ‘view from the front’ of one of the event organisers, Simon Nuttall.