Pedal On UK – a three-week, 1,000-mile tour of some of the UK’s newest cycle paths – kicks off tomorrow (Friday 16 August) at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, London. Cycling convert Dame Kelly Holmes will be swapping her running shoes for cleats to lead out the peloton.
The tour, organised by cycling charity Sustrans, marks the opening of 84 new shared access paths across the UK. The organisation say these routes have helped more than four million people travel more conveniently and safely by bike or on foot.
While entry for participation in the tour is now closed, the public are invited to head to the Olympic Park for a free breakfast, bike servicing, wheel acrobatics workshops, Rollapaluza roller racing and bike security marking, all on offer between 7am and noon. Note that you are advised to register if you want breakfast.
After leaving London, Pedal On UK will visit cities around the country, with nineteen events planned in cities including Southampton, Bristol, Birmingham, Belfast, Newcastle, and a finale in Glasgow on 7 September.
Holmes, Olympic gold medallist at the 2004 Athens Games in the 800m and 1,500m events will lead the first leg of the route on new cycle paths through Bethnal Green, South Bermondsey, Westminster, Finsbury Park and Haringey.
“Over the past few years cycling has become my main form of fitness training,” she said. “I live in the country and there is nothing better than riding around exploring the area and soaking up the atmosphere.”
She will be taking gold medallist and paralympic cyclist David Stone MBE, designer Wayne Hemingway, and reality TV star Lydia Bright along for the ride too.