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More than 500 pupils to join schools’ bike ride

Published on 18 May 2016

MORE than 500 pupils from 10 schools across Leicester and Leicestershire will be taking part in an annual schools’ bike ride to show off their cycling skills.

The mass bike ride is a celebration of the Bikeability training scheme – now in its tenth year – which teaches safe cycling to children aged 10 and 11 across the city and county.

This year, the ride will converge on Curve theatre while it hosts the pioneering Cycle City Active City conference, which runs from 19-20 May.

Cycle City Active City will attract more than 700 delegates to find out more about how cities can support cycling, walking and active lifestyles. Expert speakers from across the globe will be demonstrating how lessons can be learned from other cities to increase activity among citizens and help to promote sustainable transport.

The conference will also incorporate the Association of Bikeability Schemes (TABS) conference, bringing together cycling trainers from across the county.

TABS represents the views of the professional cycle training industry in discussions and decision-making activities with government agencies and other public bodies. It supports schemes to deliver Bikeability training to a consistently high standard to schoolchildren in England, and improve the quality of cycle training delivery across the sector.

As a demonstration of sustainable transport in action, the school pupils will arrive at Curve at 12noon on Friday 20 May, having ridden in from their schools with teachers and Bikeability instructors.

They’ll be telling transport professionals and other conference delegates what they’d like their city to look like in the future, before settling down to some on-stage entertainment from Comedy 4 Kids presenter Tiernan Dioueb and a special guest appearance from LCFC mascot Filbert Fox.

Cllr Adam Clarke, assistant city mayor responsible for energy and sustainability, said: “We’re very proud of our annual schools’ bike ride. It’s not just about giving pupils the chance to try out the skills they've learned, it’s about demonstrating to them how effective a mode of transport a bike can be for getting around Leicester. This is especially true after the investment we’ve made across the city in new segregated cycle lanes, as part of our Connecting Leicester programme.

“We know these cycle lanes encourage people to travel by bike because they feel safer. Our Bikeability training also helps to keep children safe, by teaching them the skills need to negotiate traffic by bike.

“It’s great that this year, pupils will also be able to tell us what they’d like to see more of by participating in the Cycle City Active City conference. Their views will, I’m sure, make an important contribution to the debate on making cities more sustainable.”