When 23 major cycling organisations met in November 2011 to discuss the future promotion of cycling, few people anticipated the outcome. A unanimous decision was reached: to push forwards with a collaborative movement aiming to introduce more new people to cycling than ever before.
The ‘Summer of Cycling’ campaign which involves major UK cycling event organisers, charities, NGOs, industry manufacturers and retailers and co-ordinated by the Bicycle Association, has evolved rapidly. With an expansive reach across a range of sectors, the campaign will use traditional and newer social media avenues to encourage everyone to ‘introduce a friend to cycling’. It’s also known as the ‘+1 concept’ and a theory which we practice avidly here at Challenge for Change to get more people cycling.
Cycling has seen a surge in publicity recently. Since the Times launched their ‘Cities fit for cycling’ campaign in February, there have been numerous articles discussing cycling and actions to shape it’s future within our current infrastructure. Cycling safety has even reached the agenda at Westminster Hall – last month 70 MPs turned out to show their support for policy change which increases the safety of cyclists.
Challenge for Change Chairman and Executive Director of the Bicycle Association, Phillip Darnton, has commented on cycling in the coming year:
“2012 ought to be the year we sell more bikes than ever before. It ought to be the year more kids get cycle trained than ever before. More children should be cycling to school than ever before. And after the Olympics, more people than ever before should be lining the roads to watch the Tour of Britain.”
With the anticipation of these words ringing true and with everything set ready for this year’s Summer of Cycling and beyond, it’s time to get involved and take action. Watch this space for how Challenge for Change are getting on board with the campaign and getting more people cycling.