This month, we don’t just have one cyclist of the month, as there are lots of you we want to thank for cycling to the Colchester Free Festival, as well as the organisers, our funders and all the volunteers and partners who helped to make Cycle Town such a success. Thanks to everyone who chatted to us and signed up to receive this newsletter.
Just a reminder that for those we met at the Festival, we are keen to hear your views on the Cycle Town we provided. Our short survey is open until the 21 September, so please give us your feedback if you haven’t already!
This month CTC host a 100km competition through Essex’s beautiful countryside.
Have you tried the Cake Escape? A fun challenge to explore the local countryside by bike while incorporating those all-important tea breaks at cafés that cater for cyclists needs! Colchester now has three Cake Escape cafés making it easier for the whole family to take part.
Are you interested in free Bikeablity sessions for you and your family to increase your skills and understanding of how to cycle on today's roads? Find out more below and get in touch as there is an opportunity for Bikeability sessions during the October half term.
Use the Wivenhoe Trail? Sustrans are doing some maintenance repairs in the coming weeks.
Will you be starting at the University of Essex later this month, or know someone who is? What do they offer to support cyclists?
Colchester Bike Kitchen is now in its third month and growing in popularity, why not come along next month and learn how to do some simple bike repairs plus a reminder of Wivenhoe Bike Kitchens drop in sessions.
Essex County Council’s Essex Cycling Strategy is currently out for consultation. Find out how you can have your say on this important document.
Now school’s back, find out what Sustrans can offer your school to help promote sustainable travel for the school run
Sustrans support for schools
Sunday 27 September – 100km CTC ride
Starts at Playgolf, Bakers Lane, Colchester with information controls at Boxted, Polstead, Long Melford, Finchingfield, and Bures. Refreshments at Wally’s Cafe in Acton and Bosworth’s Tea Rooms in Finchingfield. 6 hour time limit. Find out more at CTC Colchester
FREE Bikeability sessions for families - any level
First what is Bikeability?
‘It’s about gaining practical skills and understanding how to cycle on today’s roads. Bikeability gives everyone the skills and confidence for all kinds of cycling’
Check out the Bikeability website to find out more and about the different levels, then contact us outlining your needs. There are opportunities, starting this October half term, for Bikeability training for families whatever your need.
For the kids:
For the mums and dads
Wivenhoe Trail temporary closure
Sustrans need to undertake maintenance repairs on the Wivenhoe Trail in September/October meaning the trail will be closed some of the time. Notices will be placed on the trail to alert regular users. The National Route 51 will be diverted along the road and through the University campus.
If you are starting at the University of Essex later this month or know someone who is, the Uni offers various support for cyclists. Dr Bike visits once a week, you can have your bike security tagged for just £2 and there are a whole series of bike rides planned thoughout October to help build confidence, socialise and familiarise students with the local roads. Find out more on the Uni's website.
The Cake Escape – Colchester destinations
The Cake Escape combines cycling through some of the most beautiful places in Essex with that all important opportunity to stop for a tea and cake! Cake Escape cafés have proven support for cyclists, offering bike parking, repair kits, free water top ups and info about local cycle repair shops.
If you join the Cake Escape challenge, you receive a passport and collect a stamp each time you visit a Cake Escape café. Once you have 4 stamps you can claim a free slice of cake at the next Cake Escape café you visit!
There are Cake Escape cafés all over Essex, however Colchester now has 3 cafés signed up, Leisure World in Cowdray Avenue, The Filling Station café in the Greenstead Community Centre and the Oaktree coffee shop in High Woods. It would be great to have a few more local cafés signed up to make it easier for families with small children to take part. To take part yourself visit The Cake Escape website and point any bike friendly cafés you know who might want to sign up in the same direction!
Colchester Bike Kitchen – Sunday 4 October
Come and learn how to do simple bike repairs at the monthly Colchester Bike Kitchen. The next session is from 11am-4pm on Sunday 4 October at the Waiting Room, in the old bus station, off Queen Street.
You can ask their volunteers for help, or just use their tools if you know what needs doing. And if it’s a bit more complex, Andy Woolf of ATW Cycle Repairs will be there to sort things out
Wivenhoe Bike Kitchen continues to run twice a week. Drop by at the workshop off St John's Rd in Wivenhoe and get help to fix problems on Mondays 7pm to 9pm or Saturdays 2pm to 4pm
They will be doing FREE bike checks & tune ups @ Wiv Farmers' Mkt on the 19th September, Congregational Hall, High St, 9.30 to 12.30.
Essex County Council’s Cycling Strategy consultation
Essex County Council are currently consulting on their draft Essex Cycling Strategy for the next ten years.
ECC say ‘We are looking to seek the views of Essex residents on how we can best achieve our vision of seeing more people cycle in Essex, more safely and more often.’
It is ambitious including plans to increase spending from £2 to £3 per head to £10 a head of population by 2025, plus commitments to Best Practice design and high quality, well planned cycle infrastructure.
We need as many people as possible to respond to the consultation and give their views. The deadline is the 30 October 2015. Here is the draft Essex Cycling Strategy Once you have read it as an individual you can complete the online survey or if your organisation wants to respond you can write to:
Essex Cycling Strategy
E2, County Hall
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Read Wolf's insirational story about how cycling has transformed his mobility. Find out about the e-bikes he has built, his campaigning for better cycle links particularly between towns and his lobbying for ebikes to be recognised as a mobility aid. 'Getting the bus is causing me big problems, but cycling is good. Going to work by bus I’m sitting down for an hour and a half and I’d have to take painkillers before going to work, but not when I’m cycling.'