London Freewheel - It was all about the bikes

Our day got off to a good start with promising weather and a team of marshals dutifully assembled on the Little Green. Soon afterwards, riders started to appear. We had cyclists from all fields – the frequent and the Sunday cyclists, some returning cyclists and great family representation, some with tots attached, and other children cycling solo. We formed a team of 65 riders, and later learned that we had won the accolade of forming the biggest Freewheel feeder ride –well done to the people of Richmond !

After carrying out bike safety checks, with a few saddle adjustments and tyre inflations but thankfully no disqualifications, we headed off for Ravenscourt Park, the destination of our feeder ride, taking in Kew and Chiswick en route. There was much chattering along the way and it was clear that people were excited about being involved in the London Freewheel event.

After successfully concluding the feeder ride at Ravenscourt Park, we set off through the streets of London to the Freewheel start. It was great to see so many people out cycling along into London with confidence, thanks to a team of marshals controlling the traffic and pointing us in the right direction.

By the time we had reached Hyde Park, we were starting to feel a part of the 38,000 mass that had registered for the Freewheel. We then crossed into St James Park, and with Buckingham Palace behind us, we set off up the Mall and along the Freewheel course. It was quite surreal to be in central London where cars were replaced by a sea of cyclists wearing red Freewheel bibs with the slogan “The Bikes are Coming !”

After crossing St James Park, we cycled towards the Embankment and past Big Ben which was looking great after its recent refurb. It was great to see such a variety of bikes on the road. The cargo bike that proved such a hit at the “In Town without my Car” event joined our feeder ride filled with a cargo of 4 children. Along the way we saw regular bikes old and new, hired bikes and smart fixed gear bikes, but perhaps the best sight was a tandem recumbent with additional child seat passing by a standard recumbent.

Along the Embankment people were shouting and ringing their bells - an activity positively encouraged as we went through some of London’s echoing tunnels. We crossed the river via London Bridge which marked the half way point and then cycled back along the Embankment and on to the finish where we completed the event with well earned tea and cakes.

All in all, a good day out and a great way to promote cycling in and around London.

Posted bySue Higham at 12:14  


sue said... 29 September 2007 at 14:54  

Sue, thanks for your blog!

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