GETTING more adults cycling in Warwickshire is the aim of a new initiative.
Warwickshire Cycle Buddies took to the saddle for the first time with a ride from Warwick’s St Nicholas Park to Leamington’s Victoria Park.
The riders, who included Kenilworth town Warwick district councillor Andrew Milton, together with members of Clean Air Warwickshire and Cycleways groups, enjoyed a traffic-free ride along the cycle path joining the two towns.
Warwickshire Cycle Buddies is a free service that connects novice cyclists with experienced riders to help people feel more confident cycling around the local area, as well as showing them the best local cycle routes.
It is a joint initiative between Clean Air Warwickshire, Cycleways Kenilworth, Leamington & Warwick, and Action 21.
The idea came from Hazel Underwood, a member of Clean Air Warwickshire.
Hazel is passionate about the climate crisis, air pollution and sustainability, and came up with the idea after hearing about similar schemes being successfully run in London and Bristol.
Hazel, the vice chair of Clean Air for Warwickshire, said: “I’ve spoken to many friends over the past few months, many of whom say that they do not feel confident cycling around our local area.
“We have very few segregated cycle lanes at present, and whilst our group is pushing hard for the council to improve cycling facilities across Warwickshire, in the meantime it makes sense to do what we can to help get more people cycling short journeys, as it improves health, and reduces carbon emissions.”
Warwick and Leamington MP Matt Western, a keen cyclist himself, is backing the initiative.
He said: ” said: “We must immediately encourage take up of cycling on Warwickshire roads. This involves making our roads safe for cyclists and boosting the confidence of more inexperienced cyclists.”
The initial programme is funded by Warwickshire County Council’s Green Shoots Community Climate Change Fund 2021.
Now that the initiative has been launched, Warwickshire Cycle Buddies are looking for novice cyclists and experienced riders take part.
Visit warwickshirecyclebuddies.co.uk for full details.