More than 21,000 people are now doing more exercise, and more than 6,000 have become regular cyclists after the success of Cycling UK’s Big Bike Revival in 2017.
New figures released by the national cycling charity reveal that 52,431 people attended almost 1,500 free events across the country over six weeks in May and June.
The award-winning project, funded by the Department for Transport, has been running since 2015 and supports cycling groups at a local level holding public events to break down the barriers to cycling many people face.
The Big Bike Revival aims to help the vast numbers of people in the UK who have access to a bike, but due to a lack of money or mechanical knowledge, have put it away for the foreseeable future. Big Bike Revival events also boost people’s confidence on two wheels, showing them a viable, healthy, and more cost-effective form of transport.
&ldquldquo;We have had another brilliant year with the Big Bike Revival in 2017,” said Cycling UK’s head of development England Laura Hales. “From congestion and pollution to physical and mental well-being, cycling can be a remedy for all kinds of challenges. By giving that initial support to mend a puncture or get back in the saddle at free events, people have seen for themselves how easy, fun and useful it can be to get cycling again and make a routine change.”
Cycling minister Jesse Norman added: “We are delighted that Government funding for the Big Bike Revival has helped break down barriers and encouraged people to get on their bikes again.
“Cycling improves people’s health, cuts congestion and is good for the environment – these projects show that riding a bike is something everyone can enjoy and benefit from.”
More bikes have also been returned to use. With the help of volunteers from cycling projects and community groups across the country, Big Bike Revival has seen 13,684 pre-loved bikes restored to safe working order. Unwanted bikes have found a variety of new homes, from being purchased by members of the public, often raising money for great causes, to being given away to community programmes.