“Your employees are the people who make you win” Dave Ulrich

Daniel O’Connell from the Brighton Housing Trust recently published this great post about their fantastic effort in the Brighton & Hove Cycle Challenge on LinkedIn. He’s kindly agreed for us to share it: 


Here at Brighton Housing Trust we have just won the Brighton & Hove Cycle Challenge 2017. Results:


1st Place (200-499): Brighton Housing Trust

1st Place (20-49): Archway Project (a BHT mental health service)

With a recognised culture of wellbeing for our clients and residents it is also established and enabled in our culture with staff. Cycling in Brighton is a well known tradition and cycling to work has doubled across the city between 2001 and 2011. Our participation levels in this great initiative with Brighton and Hove Council and Love to Ride were 3 times the local average.

It may seem like a no-brainer, but in a competitive and challenging environment our investment in the wellbeing of our staff has many business benefits, improved health and wellbeing, reduced absence, increased productivity and morale, an authentic brand and commitment as an employer to our staff wellbeing, enabling us to attract and retain the best employees. Our staff cycled 1293 miles during the month of March and saved 635lbs of CO2 to win.

Ride for LeisureBy 2020 it is estimated 1 in 3 UK workers will be over the age of 50, half the workforce will want or need to work beyond 65 (recent reports state that at least six million people may have to work longer before they qualify for the state pension), studies show 1 in 3 people report having a long-term physical health condition, 1 in 4 employee’s have a physical health condition, 1 in 8 have a mental health condition, 1 in 10 a musculoskeletal condition. Healthy life expectancy has fallen in recent years from 63.9 years to 62.4 years and 131 million working days are lost to sickness absence every year.

Other studies show as we live longer 39% of us will be diagnosed with cancer in our lifetime, Alzheimer’s has overtaken heart disease, diabetes has doubled since 1996, results for 2015 showed 62.9% of adults were obese and the always on culture has been linked to cardiovascular disease. Who does not know someone affected? It would stand that investing and looking after an organisation’s greatest asset, its staff, remains a no-brainer, financially, ethically and morally.

The good news is prevention is better than cure and even with the great advances in medical treatments and early diagnosis there is a growing recognition of the positive link between employee well-being and long term sustainable organisational health.

Spread the LoveThis scheme is just one of the actions Brighton Housing Trust is taking towards engagement with our staff on wellbeing and I have just heard funding will be there for another three years, which is great news for organisations across Brighton and Hove.

We also have another great challenge open to everyone, our Round the World Cycle Challenge at Preston Park Velodrome on 25th June 2017, it’s accessible and available to all levels, ages and abilities for a very worthy cause First Base Day Centre. Why not consider joining us in this culture of fun, fitness and fundraising, we would love to see you. Volunteer opportunities also available.  Hopefully another no-brainer?

Thanks for reading and as I heard Geoff McDonald state recently at a talk on practical ways to tackle employee stress at work…….

“If a flower does not bloom, its not the flower, it’s the environment.”

BHT photo

#WinterWheelers – a Wheely Big Success!

Riding in Winter can be one of the most rewarding and beautiful times to get on your bike. Whether it’s enjoying the crisp, winter sun on a weekend ride or attacking puddles on a wet commute to work, at Love to Ride we wanted to show people how truly great – and diverse – winter riding can be.

That’s why we launched #WinterWheelers.

5,690 Love to Riders (including 366 new members!) braved dark December to clock up over 55,000 trips for our #WinterWheelers promo. Throughout December, in the run up to Christmas Day, 25 amazing daily prizes were gifted from the #WinterWheelers sponsors: RaleighProviz; and USE Exposure lights. We also popped a Raleigh Strada Speed 2 bike under the campaign Christmas tree. See if you were one of our lucky winners here.


A huge thank you to our awesome national sponsors – and to everyone who took part!

Last but not least, there’s the important matter of the winning photo. Honourable mention goes to this corker from Den:

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But the winner by unanimous decision is this Christmassiest of snaps from Rob – congratulations!

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Thanks again to everyone who made #WinterWheelers such a great success – look out for our next initiative to get more people cycling in your area for the #YearoftheBike!

Find out more about what we have in store for 2017 here.

2017 is Year of the Bike

200 Years ago…

In 1817, the first verifiable bicycle was born. In 2017, we’re celebrating the 200th birthday of the bicycle with the ‘Year of the Bike’. In participating regions, a calendar of events aimed at both celebrating and encouraging cycling will be run throughout the year.

We are looking for local partners who want to utilise the opportunity that the Year of the Bike brings to help achieve their local cycling goals.

screenshot-2016-12-05-16-54-47 screenshot-2016-12-05-17-02-16


The key aims of the Year of the Bike are:

  • Encourage more people to rediscover the benefits of riding
  • Encourage people to ride more often and for transportation
  • Provide regions with quality behaviour change programmes at the local level
  • Be effective at achieving behaviour change through cost-efficient programmes
  • Collate and share rich data to help inform local developments


screenshot-2016-12-05-16-37-03GPS data

As well as encouraging more people to ride, more often and for transportation, we’ll also be collecting useful GPS data on where people are riding in your city to help inform your future infrastructure plans.

Learn more here


Rolling throughout the year

The Year of the Bike includes a year-round rolling programme of activity and engagement. We have four major campaigns spaced equally at one every quarter.

Ride to Work Week: The main aim is to encourage more people to realise the benefits of riding to work. This is a fun competition between organisations and people to see who can ride to work the most during the week. There are also incentives for encouraging new people to try riding to work as well.

Bike Week: To kickstart the summer of cycling, we focus on encouraging people to ride and attend local Bike Week events. Another key aim is to encourage existing riders to invite new riders out for a ride and/or to a Bike Week event.

Cycle September: This UK-wide event is for everyone, everywhere in funded and non-funded areas. Ride and encourage others to do the same. Compete for fun against other organisations locally and nationally. Great team and individual prizes up for grabs. Which of local employers will take the top spots?

Winter Wheelers – Advent Calendar: As the nights draw in and the cold starts to bite, Winter Wheelers supports people to ride in winter with top tips and an advent calendar’s worth of daily prizes, including bikes and seasonal cycling gear!

Funding and Budgets

We recognise that some areas have more funding available than others for getting more people riding bikes. We have, therefore, created a menu of options which give you the ability to choose the Year of the Bike campaign elements that fit within you budget and best compliment your existing planned cycling activities. Please contact us to look at your options.

Want to find out more?

To understand how to bring the Year of the Bike into your area to give cycling a local boost – whatever your budget – get in touch with Sam by phone on 07734833451 or email sam@lovetoride.org.

Ever wondered how we change behaviour? This fun 2 minute animation explains all…


Winter Cycling Checklist

Winter is upon us and cold weather and shorter daylight hours can make getting on your bike seem a bit trickier. But with the right approach and some basic equipment, riding in winter can be fun – and incredibly rewarding. Here are some top tips to keep you pedalling through deepest, darkest December.

ltr-advent-2016-16-1Wrap up warm (and dry!)

A windproof and waterproof jacket, overtrousers and gloves will keep your body and hands toasty. Multitubes help keep the cold air off your neck and ears and if you’re riding a long distance and get cold feet, overshoes will keep the draught out.


Be safe, be seenideas

A good set of lights will help you to see and be seen and are essential for commuting through the shortest days of winter – check out Exposure’s brilliant, British-made lights here. It’s also a good idea to be as highly visible as possible to other road users. Proviz make amazing hi-viz gear and happen to have a healthy discount just now…

supportGive your bike some TLC

Book a service to make sure everything’s working as it should (find your local bike shop here if you’re logged into the site) and consider fitting some mudguards to prevent getting surface water and mud all over yourself and your fellow commuters.
The salt and water you kick up when cycling in winter are bad for your bike, so it’s a good idea to give it a clean as often as possible, with a degreaser to dislodge moisture and gunk from moving parts where necessary. Wet weather chain oil is also a good call to keep you running smoothly through nasty weather.

Enjoy it!xmas pudding

If you’re well prepared, riding into work on a crisp winter morning or battling through rain and cold on the way home can be invigorating, exciting and rewarding. Plus you’ll reap all the brilliant benefits of biking right through the winter and arrive in spring feeling fitter and healthier than ever!

Finally, bag yourself some amazing winter riding gear – or even a brand new Raleigh bike – by logging your trips with Love to Ride! We’re running a Winter Wheelers Advent Calendar, with great prizes being given away every day from December 1 up to and including Christmas Day.

Massive thanks to our fantastic winter sponsors, Raleigh, Proviz and Exposure Lights.


Cycling Heavyweights Team Up To Help UK Love to Ride

We’ve teamed up with CTC and Cyclescheme to invite 20,000 businesses to take part in the first National Workplace Cycle Challenge. The Love to Ride Challenge is a competition between organisations across the UK to see who can get the most staff to try riding a bike.

In 2015, the Challenge will run from 8-28 June and will be a major annual event in the cycling calendar. The aim is to get as many people as possible to ride a bike and log their trip during the Challenge period. Organisations will compete on local and national league tables to see who can get the highest proportion of their staff to ride for ten minutes; they will be able to compete between offices in different locations around the UK and against similarly sized companies.

It’s free for organisations and individuals to take part and there are six size categories for companies and a range of individual and team prizes to be won. Local Authorities can sign up to support and boost participation in their area, whatever budget they have to promote cycling.

We want every LA to be able to join in, so we’ve drawn up a range of options from fully bespoke programmes supported with local Challenge Managers, to a Freemium package with no frills.

Love to Ride, CTC and Cyclescheme together have 157 years’ experience of promoting cycling. CTC, the national cycling charity, has 67,000 members and was formed in 1878 when cycling was emerging as a mass mode of transport and leisure pursuit. We’ve run Workplace Cycle Challenges on three continents and engaged 110,000 people.

Over the last 12 years we have developed a unique behaviour change model and accompanying website and mobile app. Cyclescheme started 9 years ago and has provided over 450,000 bicycles to commuters through a tax-free benefit scheme. We recruit ‘Challenge Champions’ – regular cyclists who encourage their colleagues to try riding – to promote our Challenges in businesses and organisations.


John Cooper, Sony Mobile’s Champion for the London Cycle Challenge 2014, said, ‘It was fantastic to find a competition which wasn’t about riding marathon distances, but about participation and team effort’.

Phillip Darnton, Chair of the Cycle Rail Working Group, had this to say about the Love to Ride Challenge: ‘Cycling to work or to and from the station is quick, convenient, reliable, cheap, healthy, and helps with congestion and pollution. The hard part is getting started, which is why the National Cycle Challenge is such a great idea: it’s a fantastic way to get people on bikes with their friends and colleagues’.

From our partners

Laurence Boon, Marketing Manager for Cyclescheme: ‘We are very excited to be supporting Love to Ride. Their focus on behaviour change and encouraging a modal shift in commuting habits is very closely aligned to what we are trying to achieve here at Cyclescheme’.

CTC’s Marketing Director, Matt Mallinder: ‘We’re delighted to be joining Love to Ride and Cyclescheme in this initiative. We call on all of the UK to take to their bikes in 2015. Through this partnership and the Love to Ride Challenge, we hope to inspire and support thousands to realise the health, economic and wellbeing benefits of cycling’.