After the rain, the rides

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A few things coming up in the next week or so covering the spectrum of our local cycling culture.

Lichfield Fixed Gear Tuesday Cruiseday (22nd July) is a short pub run this week to Whittington or similiar. Meet at 7PM at Speakers Corner, Dam Street, Lichfield.

Freedom rides are road rides out of the Freedom Cycles shop at the bus station in Lichfield on Sundays and Tuesdays. Contact the shop for more information.

Lichfield Dérive is on the last Friday of the month (25th) meeting at Speakers Corner, Dam Street at 6:30PM for a fun ride round town.

July’s Cycle Rides For All is the short 3.5 mile taster ride round town next Sunday (27th). Meet at The Pavilion over the other side of the lake from the playground at 11AM (not 10AM as usual) in Beacon Park.

Lichfield Myths & Legends cycle tour (29th) is a city ride visiting some sites of historical myths and legends finishing with a pub stop. Meet at Captain Smith statue in Beacon Park (photo above).

The North Lichfield Bike Train starts soon too and like everything above is absolutely free and open to all. Get stuck in.

On a Quest

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I’ve been helping a friend to research recumbent trikes, a while ago we had a trip out to try a couple. Today we went to Shifnal to visit Quest88 as they had a demonstration model of a particular trike he wanted to try, a Hase Lepus. It was a beautifully engineered and fantastically specifed bike, it looked such fun to ride. Unfortunately I was a bit too big to have a go as well.

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Quest88′s core business has developed to help people with physical and learning disabilities through cycling and walking aids. They manufacture themselves and also sell other brands all over the country. Their knowledge about the bike we went to see was excellent, Nick who made adjustments for my friend had spent a week with Hase in Germany learning about the range and had rode coast to coast on this trike so knew from experience what it was all about. It perhaps wasn’t the right bike for my friend. The staff told me that a big grin on peoples face was the sign it was. We will try again with another one of the Hase models, perhaps at Quest88′s other base near Shrewsbury where you can take the bikes for a proper ride. Quest88 will also be exhibiting at the Cycle Show at the NEC in September where I think we will go for the chance to look at more recumbents as well.

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Recently I found out about a company in Burntwood called RGK Wheelchairs who are doing similiar things in the wheelchair world, on my doorstep and I had never heard of them. Thanks to Martin, Rob and Nick at Quest88 for sharing their time and expertise, it sounded like a really great company who were doing some useful and life changing things for people.

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Re:Cycle got wheels – this Saturday at Curborough Community Centre in Lichfield

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Looks like it’s going to be a fun (hopefully dry!) day at Curborough Community Centre this Saturday. We are going to be there helping people learn to maintain their bikes, doing free repairs and offering advice alongside the local PCSO’s who will be security marking bikes for free. We will be bringing along some of the donated bikes we have as well, mainly kids bikes shown above and a 26 inch wheel adult mountain bike too and all available for free, long term loan. More info about the fundraising event here. Looking forward to it.

Re:Cycle at North Lichfield Summer Fete this Saturday

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On Saturday 19th July there is a fundraising summer fete and barbeque being held at Curborough Community Centre to raise funds for both the centre and North Lichfield Initiative. We have been invited to take our bike renovation and skill sharing project Lichfield Re:Cycle along by the local PCSO’s who we will be alongside on the day. The event runs from 12:30pm until 6pm with our volunteers there from when the doors open until about 4:30pm.

Our project and volunteers are based in the North Lichfield area and most of the people who have used the project are from around here to. The sort of bikes we rescue from being scrapped are being used by people to get to work, to take the kids to school or simply for fun and exercise. By helping people learn how to maintain their own bikes they are being used more as well. This summer we will be doing confidence building rides around North Lichfield for families to learn how to ride safely on the road in traffic.

Bring your bike along for a check up, minor adjustments or advice. There will be a selection of bikes available to take away on free long term loan on the day. We will post a photo of what we have at the moment later in the week.

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Courier Favour

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At the place where I volunteer this morning, things were running out so I offered to go and fetch some toilet rolls and milk. Was a bit wobbly with 24 loo rolls hanging off the handlebars but I managed it. It got me thinking about cycle couriers and how they get about town, nipping in and out of traffic, taking shortcuts down alleys to beat the motorised alternative. Not a great deal of traffic or shortcuts in the sleepy city though. So for the next few weeks I offer you the free cycle courier service for journeys within Lichfield. Library book overdue and needs returning pronto? Home delivery from Netherstowe chippy? Pick up that objet d’art from Wintertons? Deliver that birthday card cos you missed the last post? I’ve got the fixie, the cycling cap, messenger bag and disregard for my own safety. At your service.

North Lichfield Bike Train

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A bike train is just another name for a group of people riding together. Re:Cycle gave a bike to a young lad this afternoon and is giving a quick service to his Moms bike so they can ride together. Summer holidays are just round the corner so it struck me that a good way to encourage families to ride together on the road with condfidence would be to get them to ride with people who are already doing it. So the bike train will depart and arrive at peoples houses or agreed locations, picking up and dropping off on the way round. Look out for the first one in North Lichfield in the next few weeks. All aboard.

Mr B’s Little Book of Big Rides

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Earlier today I posted about The St Giles Hospice fundraising cycle rides. It is a cause close to the heart of a good friend of mine who celebrates a big birthday today. As a surprise I wrote and printed him some little booklets about the rides we have done together over the last year or so.

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It is a small collection of vignettes from some of our social rides from Lichfield to places like Amerton Farm, Sutton Park, Middleton Lakes and Packington Moor. Copies will be available to buy with all proceeds going to St Giles Hospice, what you donate will be the amount going to the hospice without any expenses taken. If you would like a copy please contact us via the email address on the Contact page above.

Happy birthday Mr B!