Champions' welcome for Bikeability youngsters
Posted: Wed, 30 May 2012 15:45
Hundreds of local schoolchildren will be showing off their street-safe cycling skills during a mass ride into Leicester City Centre on Thursday (May 31).
Around 300 children, from eleven schools across the city and county, will be joining the eighth annual Phoenix Ride for Schools to celebrate their completion of Level 2 Bikeability training.
To mark their achievements, the schoolchildren will ride from their schools into Orton Square in Leicester city centre. Deputy City Mayor Cllr Rory Palmer and Chairman of Leicestershire County Council Peter Lewis will greet the young cyclists on arrival.
The schoolchildren will also have the chance to meet Junior Road Race World Champion Lucy Garner and Pro Freestyle BMX ride Keelan Phillips, who will be giving a demonstration of his talents in Orton Square, and local ride leader Maryam Amatullah, who recently won the title 'Volunteer of the Year' from the Muslim Women's Sport Foundation.
They will also be treated to a special film screening at Phoenix Square cinema.
The Phoenix Bike Ride has been organised by the city and county councils. Around 100 adults, including Bikeability instructors, British Cycling qualified ride leaders, police cyclists, teachers and parents; will accompany the young cyclists on their ride.
Cllr Rory Palmer, Deputy City Mayor, said: "It's wonderful to see a new generation of young cyclists being given the skills and confidence to ride safely on our city streets. Bikeability training has played an important role in increasing the number of cyclists in the city and that's something we want to build on.
"The Phoenix Bike Ride marks the start of a really exciting 'Summer of Cycling' in the city, with weekly guided rides and the return of the Ride Leicester Festival and Sky Ride in August."
Peter Lewis, Chairman of Leicestershire County Council, said: "The Phoenix Bike Ride is a wonderful event that's always met with enthusiasm from our youngsters.
"We hope the ride, coupled with the Bikeability sessions, will give them and their parents the confidence and inspiration to cycle more, both for leisure and to get to and from school. This is 'pedal power' at its best - helping children have fun, stay fit and be healthy at the same time."
Bikeability is the modern equivalent of cycling proficiency and is designed to give the next generation the skills and confidence to ride bikes safely in today's roads. Around 1,400 children from city schools and more than 7,000 from county schools have taken part in Bikeability training at level 1 or level 2 in the last 12 months.