1m more cyclists riding regularly than in 2008, says British Cycling

Milestone means Sky partnership has met target

A million more people are now cycling regularly in the UK than they were in 2008, according to British Cycling and its partners, Sky.

It comes ahead of the schedule the two organisations set themselves when they joined forces four years ago.

At the time, the dual goal was to reach the milestone figure by 2013 through their Sky Ride campaign and have a British rider winning the Tour de France by 2016. With Bradley Wiggins achieving the latter this summer, both targets have been met with plenty of time to spare.

Working with Sport England and local councils, campaigns such as Sky Ride (mass participation rides on traffic-free city streets) and Sky Ride Local (smaller, escorted rides in the country) have encouraged thousands to take two wheels.

Along with the newer Breeze programme, which is helping to get more women riding, and Social Cycling Groups, an online network to help cyclists get together for rides, they won’t be slowing down now they’ve reached the landmark figure.

"This is a fantastic culmination to an incredible year for British cycling. In partnership with Sky we introduced the Sky Ride campaign in 2009, setting out our ambition to inspire the nation and get more people on bikes,” said British Cycling’s Chief Executive, Ian Drake.

“Within three years we have created an unprecedented shift in cycling participation with the help of Sport England, local authority partners, our members, local Ride Leaders and volunteers.

"Four years ago we were known for our ability to win medals on a world stage. We’ve used this success to drive participation – reaching out to one million more regular cyclists, providing more ways to have fun on a bike and making it easier to get involved."

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