Long overshadowed by large-scale bicycle manufacture in neighbouring cities, the aim of Cycle Heritage Leicester is to highlight the important part the city has played in the social and sporting development of cycling in the UK.
Officially launched on May 22nd the project will research and record the rich and varied history of cycling in Leicester from the racing stadiums of the 1880s through to events such as the recent Spokesfest gatherings.
Working with schools and community groups the project will record a wide variety of memories from current and former cyclists and also research the history of the city's many early cycling clubs, manufacturers and cycle personalities. In partnership with Leicester Museums, a web-based archive of photographs and historic documents will be created.
Cycle Heritage Leicester will also promote cycling history with events and exhibitions. The project finale in May 2006 will be a major celebration of the history of cycling on Leicester's Abbey Park.
Sheila Stone, Heritage Lottery Fund Regional Manager for the East Midlands, said:
"The East Midlands is world famous for its cycling heritage, and Leicester has an important role in this. We're delighted to offer this grant so that the city's best cycling stories can be told, and more people can learn about this fascinating part of our heritage.'