Having failed to attempt the Coast to Coast earlier this year, I was determined to get on my bike a bit more. Commuting was a definite option, and I’ve secured a place in the lock-up at work to keep it in.
I can’t, though, get over the fact I’m riding a borrowed steed: thanks to the kindness of a good mate, I’ve been mobile on a very decent touring bike.
Imagine my delight to discover Bostin Bikes, a scheme designed to help people onto (or back onto) the roads and offering a bike on loan for £50 deposit. Now, fifty quid is eminently more affordable than the couple of hundred it would take to get a basic bike, and this one comes with helmet, lock and lights.
It’s part of a scheme that includes training through Bike Right. They offer no nonsense training on and off the road for everyone from those who don’t know how to ride a bike to the experienced cyclist. I did my Level 2 last weekend and thoroughly enjoyed the refresher. It did me good to realise the things I could do to tweak my cycling style and take account of hazards.
I once (many moons ago) came second in the Walsall Council Cycling Proficiency competition at the then Manor Farm school hall and grounds. We had a team that went to a regional final. I was eleven and it was very exciting, but more importantly the basic training we’d all done kept me safe (or safer) as I grew up. If you want to learn to ride, or to improve, take a look at it.