This month we feature the Eco Race Essex and The Big Pedal, two opportunities this term, for your school to promote active travel and reduce the traffic around their site.
In support of our Eco Race theme, we interview local teacher Paul Arrowsmith, about why Home Farm where he teachers takes part in the Eco Race and how it works.
Get an update on Re-Cycle, their monthly bike sale and plea for more bikes.
We find out more about Col Velo’s coffee and canvas rides
Air pollution represents a serious public health challenge for Colchester . Healthier Air for Colchester is an opportunity for you to contribute to Colchester Borough Council’s Air Quality Action Plan before it is finalised.
Do you regularly use the path between the two halves of Norman Road (linking Prettygate to Lexden Road)? If you or someone you know does, Cllr Sue Lissimore wants to hear from you, particularly if you have used the route for twenty plus years.
Wondering what to do in the February half term? We still have places left on our Bikeability Fix course, a one and a half hour session to help you and your kids (8+) learn how to fix your bike.
Finally an update on CTC activity in Colchester.
The Eco Race Essex
If traffic congestion from the school run is a problem around your school site plus your school is interested in promoting healthier lifestyles, why not introduce them to and encourage them to get involved in ‘The Eco Race Essex’?
This fun and active challenge offers a score-based competition which rewards those pupils who travel to school on foot, scooter, bike and by bus. This term it starts on the 29th February and runs for 3 weeks. You can find instructions on how to run the race in your school plus all the resources needed to help your school take part including downloadable score sheets, posters and a letter to the parents online at www.ecoraceessex.org.uk Why not share this link with your head teacher and get your school involved?
The Big Pedal
If you want to compete nationally, The Big Pedal is the UK’s largest inter-school cycling and scooting challenge that inspires pupils, staff and parents to choose two wheels for their journey to school.
Powered by Sustrans and funded by the Bike Hub, the 2016 challenge will run from 18 to 29 April and is open to individual classes as well as whole schools.
On each day of the challenge schools compete to see who can record the greatest number of pupils, staff and parents cycling or scooting to school. A school’s best five days will determine their final position, but they can log journeys on all ten days if they wish.
For schools unable to take part in the main challenge there is also a one-day version, which can include cycling and scooting activities in the school day as well as on the journey to school.
Visit The Big Pedal website for more information.
Have you got a bike to donate to Re-Cycle?
Recycle continue to hold a bike sale of refurbished bikes that are unsuitable to send to Africa on the last Saturday of each month (27th February this month) to help with their fundraising. They also need more bikes, so if you received a new bike for Christmas and your old one is still languishing in the shed, or if you fancy a new pre-loved bike for the forthcoming cycling season, why not take your old one along to Wormingford to donate and invest in a new one.
If you can’t get to Wormingford you can leave your donated bike at Halfords off Cowdray Avenue.
ColVelo new Coffee and Canvas ride
ColVelo’s inaugural Coffee and Canvas ride launched last month. Having gained a reputation for longer and faster rides as members strove to challenge themselves, ColVelo sought to create a new ride to serve as an entry point for new members to the world of ColVelo! They explainted more, ‘The name….Coffee is an easy one, the canvas, a nod to tourers of old, and relaxed days out taking in some of the great countryside we have in our doorstep. C&C rides will be based around inclusive speeds, strictly no drop, plenty of good coffee, cakes and stunning riding. Just without the vast distances.
ColVelo Coffee & Canvas rides will run two Sundays a month, with the next one taking place on the 7th February. Meet Up Spot Cafe Nero, Culver Street West, Colchester and leave at 09:30.
Check out their website for more information
Healthy Air for Colchester
Being a vibrant town with a growing population, Colchester suffers from traffic congestion and the associated air pollution. Healthier Air for Colchester is Colchester Borough Council’s Air Quality Action Plan for 2016 – 2021. The plan outlines an ambitious set of measures that will be taken to improve Colchester’s air quality. This is your chance to comment on the plans before they are finalised.
The consultation period runs from Friday 15th January 2016 to 5.00pm Friday 11th March 2016. Here is the link on Colchester Borough Council’s website
Do you use the path between the two halves of Norman Road?
If you regularly use the path between the two halves of Norman Road whether as a walker or a cyclist and particularly if you have used this route for twenty or more years, please contact Cllr Sue Lissimore at email@example.com
Cllr Lissimore is gathering information for a legal challenge to have this much used path officially recognised and needs declarations from long term users to support the claim.
We still have places on both of our Bikeability Fix courses on the 18 February. The one and a half hour course is suitable for anyone 8 years and upwards who is interested in learning how to fix their own bike. The course covers:
The session will take place inside and every participant will be given a puncture repair kit to take home with them so that they can fix a puncture at home or on a ride. Adults not taking part on the course do not need to stay. If you want to book, complete a booking request form on the Colchester Travel Plan Club website (scroll down to the relevant blog)
CTC, the national cycling charity’s local cycling programme has lots of cycle rides on and is running even more ride leader training in February for people that want to help get more people cycling. So, if you're interested get in touch with Richard Monk on 01206 506412 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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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.'