Saturday’s Children’s Cycling Taster turned out to be a success despite bad weather conditions.
We set out our stall next to the impressive Willesden Sports Centre in the throbbing heart ofNW10. It was good to see the WCC organise a cycling event actually based in Willesden itself. Plenty of WCC volunteers were on hand to help on the day, namely Jim and Wendy Mears , Jumbo James, Jan and Ray Kelly, Wendy and Mark Brooking, Vyv Baker, Digger the dog and John Davies
Courtesy of British Cycling Ray had brought his stock of mountain bikes, cones and stripy tape. He quickly laid out a course that required riders to negotiate a narrow alleyway of cones, followed by a short slalom course, a quick duck under the limbo pole and then into a designated square where you had to stop and balance the bike for five seconds.
For the first hour or more we huddled under the Willesden gazebo, lashed by rain and high winds. As there was not the slightest hint of any customers, we took a long, thoughtful look at the skies. It did not look good and we decided to call it a day and pack it in. That’s when the rush started! A steady trickle of riders arrived, together with an improvement in the weather and our morale. For the next hour the course was alive with children having a great time riding around the course. At one point we ran out of spare bikes. In total we had around 10 children, many rode continually around the course for over an hour. Numbers were also boosted by a few mums, dads and a grand dad who were just as keen to have a go. This included one gentleman who hadn’t touched a bike in 35 years. Star of the day was a tiny rider who turned up with his own bike complete with stabilizers, he left riding without them!
The session was due to finish at 4pm, but riders were showing no signs of giving in. We started to collect the cones and limbo poles, they simply rode round us instead. At the end of the session riders and parents were very keen to do another session as soon as possible. So were we.
In summary a rewarding day and a great start to the Willesden’s Go-Ride/Club Mark programme.
06 September 08