INSPIRING women from Warwickshire have been named among Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling
Rosemary Cragg and Vicky Palethorpe were included in the nationwide charity’s ranking of female cyclists for their work encouraging women to cycle.
They join TV and film actress Maxine Peake, BBC Radio 4 presenter, Melanie Abbott and gold medal winners Katie Archibald and Elinor Barker in the list which recognises achievements in raising the profile of women’s cycling.
The list – part of the charity’s Women’s Festival of Cycling – also includes lesser-known women who have been working at grassroots level during difficult times to encourage and support more women to ride.
Rosemary Cragg from Bubbenhall is included for her work as a community champion. As founder and organiser of Bubbenhall Breeze Belles women’s cycling group, she has done much to encourage women in her local area to start cycling. Although Rosemary herself only started cycling in 2015, she has gone from strength to strength, becoming a trained Breeze leader, arranging maintenance courses and rides with the group, which now has over 30 members.
Vicky Palethorpe is a ride leader and secretary of her local cycling group, CTC Coventry, who has supported women within the club.
Until she met her husband-to-be and club member in 2015, the Kenilworth resident had not been on a bike for 30 years. She soon realised what she was missing out on and started riding with a local group to build her fitness. Shortly after Vicky joined CTC Coventry, and began organising women’s rides and a tour.
Recent figures from Cycling UK show more women have taken up cycling during the pandemic. A survey found around 30 per cent of women participants had switched from a car to a bike for everyday journeys, and those who cycled regularly reported improvements to their wellbeing.
Cycling UK chief executive Sarah Mitchell said: “Congratulations to Rosemary and Vicky for making it into our 100 Women in Cycling in 2021. It’s an incredible achievement and testimony to the tireless work they’ve done to raise the profile of women’s cycling.
“Every woman on our list is a powerful ambassador for women’s cycling, and many have done outstanding work supporting women to cycle during lockdown. But sadly, women remain underrepresented when it comes to everyday cycling.
“During this year’s festival we’re asking every woman who already cycles to find just one more woman they can help and inspire to get on their bike.”
Visit cyclinguk.org/womensfestival for more information.