Stalls tar­get new cy­clists

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Uk&world Update - By MATTHEW REVILLE

A LIVELY street fes­ti­val set the wheels in mo­tion be­fore the Tour Se­ries cy­cle race be­gan in the city cen­tre.

In­ter­ac­tive dis­plays and in­for­ma­tion stalls lined Long Cause­way, from 10am un­til 5pm yes­ter­day, to raise aware­ness about cy­cling among city res­i­dents.

It was or­gan­ised by Greater Peter­bor­ough Part­ner­ship, whose en­vi­ron­ment cap­i­tal of­fi­cer Nick Good­man said: “The aim is to cre­ate a legacy where we help to en­cour­age more peo­ple to get on a bike.

“The tour is for com­peti­tors but this street event is more for ev­ery­day peo­ple, whether they are reg­u­lar cy­clers or com­plete amateurs.”

In­cluded in the event were po­lice dis­plays about bike se­cu­rity and Trav­el­choice ran a Scalex­tric car rac­ing track, pow­ered by peo­ple on ex­er­cise bikes.

One of the most eye-catch­ing dis­plays was Cross Keys Homes’ four ex­er­cise bikes, which were wired up to a com­puter to al­low shop­pers to chal­lenge friends, fam­ily and strangers in a 500m race.

A spokes­woman said: “We have 10,000 ten­ants in Peter­bor­ough prop­er­ties and we have a man­i­festo to help them be­come more healthy and en­vi­ron­men­tally aware. Cy­cling is a great way to be both.”

Ge­orge Page (20) ad­mit­ted that tak­ing part in the chal­lenge was the first time he had been on a bike in years.

He said: “It has been about four years since I was on a bike, which is quite bad.

“Things like this are def­i­nitely good to raise cy­cling’s pro­file and I am sure it will get a lot of peo­ple in­ter­ested.”

Ge­orge was on a shop­ping trip with his grand­mother Va­lerie (73), who agreed with his as­sess­ment.

She said: “I used to cy­cle to work ev­ery day – but in my day ev­ery­body did.

“There are less bikes on the roads these days, but I sup­pose that is also be­cause it is more dan­ger­ous out there.”

The dis­play also turned the head of a for­mer cy­clist turned busi­ness­man, Bourne-based An­thony Spencer.

An­thony, who cy­cled in com­pe­ti­tions with the Bri­tish Na­tional Squad in 2002, said: “Things like this are amaz­ing for get­ting peo­ple in­volved in cy­cling.

“I am down here with my col­league Piers and he wanted to jump on and give it ago. I was just happy that I won. Hope­fully events like this will in­spire a lot more peo­ple to get on a bike.”

Peter­bor­ough Cy­cling Club and Fen­land Clar­ion Cy­cling Club com­peted against one an­other on the course in a time trial, af­ter spend­ing the day get­ting peo­ple to join their groups.

Peter­bor­ough Cy­cling Club’s Paul Oliver said: “I ac­tu­ally signed up at this event last year so was happy to help out.”

Re­cruit­ment was also the main aim of BMX club Peter­bor­ough Phan­toms’ stall.

Club mem­ber and Olympic BMX hope­ful Bethany Camp­bell (13) said: “BMX is a re­ally fast-grow­ing sport and ev­ery­one who tries it loves it.”

From 4pm to 5pm, lo­cal school chil­dren com­peted in a ju­nior duathlon, con­sist­ing of two 800-me­tre runs and a one kilo­me­tre bike ride.

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