Cycling For All!

A great time was had by all yesterday at the launch of the new North Wales Wheels For All inclusive cycling programme in Prestatyn.

The Steve Morgan Foundation has funded three new cycling hubs across North Wales to ensure the Cycling Projects charity can deliver sessions in safe spaces for those trying cycling for the first time, or returning after a long period away perhaps due to limiting health conditions.

Specially adapted bikes also allow children and adults with disabilities or differing needs to enjoy the benefits of cycling in a safe and sociable environment with families and friends.

Yesterday’s taster session at Alive Church in Prestatyn included a visit from the Bryn Tirion Hall School in Wrexham, attended by children with social, emotional and mental health needs.

Amy Hughes, well known to the Steve Morgan Foundation for her work with her Amy & Friends charity which helps people with Cockayne Syndrome, also popped along and enjoyed the thrill of riding a bike for the first time in 12 years!

“We run a Wheels For All programme nationally across England, but for some time there has been a gap across North Wales,” says Ian Tierney, director of Cycling Projects.

“We have been very lucky to be the beneficiaries of funding from the Steve Morgan Foundation which has allowed us to launch three Wheels For All centres, which ideally will be one in Denbighshire, one in Flintshire and one in Conwy district.

“We have built those relationships with partner organisations in those areas now and this taster event is just to let people know what we are all about.

“They can see what bikes are available, when the sessions will be available to them, and also to listen to what people want to do as well and to their ideas of another site.

“Once everything is in place then the aim is to have weekly sessions for the different areas so that everyone in the community can have access to it.

“The aim of Cycling Projects and Wheels For All is to give people a chance to cycle who may otherwise not have that opportunity, and also to get others back in the saddle as well!

“Not only can we bring people to cycling who have never tried it before, we are able to offer the use of these specially-adapted bikes which may not be accessible to people otherwise.”

Representatives from the Steve Morgan Foundation popped along to the launch event in Prestatyn, along with several members of the local community, including from North Wales Police, and the Mayor of Prestatyn and Meliden, Councillor Gerry Frobisher.

“This initiative means that much-needed equipment to cover so many different needs is available to members of the community,” said Councillor Frobisher.

“People who are in a wheelchair can come along and benefit from cycling, and people with disabilities who can use the specially adapted bikes with help and support.

“This offers people the chance to enjoy some independence, and it is great that funding can be obtained from the Steve Morgan Foundation to help lead to such a wonderful end product.

“It is not just the youngsters or the people themselves who are enjoying the thrill of cycling that benefit – this means that it can become a social event for the whole family to enjoy.”

Janet Gregory, new Project Co-Ordinator, is working closely with occupational therapists, sports development, local council and healthcare staff on the Wheels For All initiative.

Janet added: “This is a fantastic opportunity to extend the 50+ Wheels for All centres already running successfully.

“We welcome the involvement of individuals, groups and families.

“If you would like to find out more, perhaps train as a volunteer, donate a bike, fundraise for us then please do get in touch with me.”

Janet can be contacted at janet.gregory@cycling.org.uk

  • For more information visit www.cycling.org.uk

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