The Cyclists of Stamford reveal a boom in biking over the past year
A cycling group which formed only a year ago has grown from three members to nearly 100 during the pandemic.
The Cyclists of Stamford attracts men and women keen to go on group rides around the area’s country roads.
Now restrictions on people gathering in larger groups have eased, they will be easier to spot on their Sunday morning and Thursday evening rides.
Paul McCormick, who co-founded The Cyclists of Stamford with John Dawson, said: “We have had 40 to 50 people join us for a big group ride on a Sunday, which we have split into smaller groups so as not to break the rules during the pandemic.
“Our aim is to try to get people of all ages interested in cycling, and we can also help people to take part who might otherwise find cycling tricky.
“We have borrowed a tandem from Charlotte’s Tandems in St Neots, which loans them for free to people who are unable to ride safely on their own, and this has meant a visually impaired member has been able to ride with us every Sunday.”
Membership of The Cyclists of Stamford is open to people who have a road worthy bike and helmet and are able to ride at least 25 miles in two hours. Different speeds are accommodated through groups - including ‘Quicks’, ‘Reasonably Quicks’ and ‘Relaxed’ - so people can always ride with others when they meet up.
The club has a code of conduct to help keep its riders safe while out on the road, and it asks that people have “a love of cycling, or are at least prepared to fall in love”.
Meanwhile, The Cyclists of Stamford have already developed a public-spirited ethos. Set up as a community interest company (CIC), profits made are used for the public good.
“We’ve raised about £2,500 this year for Second Helpings in Stamford,” said Paul.
“Any surplus funds go to our nominated charity and we predict this year that these will total £3,500.”
As well as having a £24 annual membership fee, the group raises funds through events it holds.
A recent ‘Big Group Ride’ from Blackstone’s Sports and Social Club off Ryhall Road in Stamford took participants out to Launde Abbey in Leicestershire, and back to The Crown in Casterton.
Another event, the Rutland Villages in a Day Challenge Charity ride, will see members try to navigate around as many of the fifty-plus Rutland villages as possible on Sunday, September 5.
The event starts at The Railway pub in Ketton at 8am.
To find out more about The Cyclists of Stamford, visit www.thecyclistsofstamford.com or call Paul on 07341 389678.