Large turnout for Kidical Mass family bike ride

Over 120 riders of all ages took part in the third Norwich Kidical Mass family bike ride held last Sunday. Peter Silburn reports on a surprising dry event!

The ride took place over the rain-soaked coronation bank holiday weekend and showers were forecast but as the start time drew close the clouds cleared and the ride was mostly blessed with sunshine.

Riders gathering in Chapelfield Gardens

To gather all the riders together we started with a lap of Chapelfield Gardens before heading out down Theatre Street towards Castle Meadow.

Doing a circuit of Chapelfield Gardens

This year we took in a slightly longer (2.8mile) route past the cathedral and across the river at St Georges Street Bridge, taking in a loop up and down St Benedicts Street (much to the delight of diners sitting outside) before returning past City Hall to Chapelfield Gardens.

Heading down Castle Meadow

There were two sound systems providing music on the move and there was much ringing of bicycle bells!

Riding along St Benedicts Street

The vision behind Kidical Mass is that all children and young people can safely and independently use cycles as a mode of travel. The movement calls for a greater focus on the vulnerability of children and enabling their independent and safe mobility.

Riders of all ages joined in the fun

This is patently lacking on UK streets which is what inspired the ride in the first place. Demands include separate cycle lanes and low urban speed limits, along with school streets and cycle lane networks.

Turning into St Andrews Street

Kidical Mass is a fun bike ride for kids of all ages but it carries the serious message of highlighting the need for better cycle infrastructure so all can enjoy getting about the city by bike.

Going past City Hall

The Norwich ride is part of a growing international movement and is now a firm fixture in the Norwich calendar.

Ride co-organiser Fern Blevins said after the ride: “It was a fantastic turn-out, especially considering thunderstorms were forecast. It’s so moving (excuse the phrase!) to see children getting from A to B under their own steam.

We’d love to see them able to do that safely every day, something that is entirely achievable with the right infrastructure. Their smiles and laughter cycling as a group in Kidical Mass are infectious!”

Elvis even joined in the ride!

The next Norwich Kidical Mass ride will be on Sunday 24th September as part of the World Car Free events. Mark the date in your diary!

Highlights of the ride – Video by Stuart Beard
Norwich Kidical Mass ride – Video by James Harvey

All photos by James Harvey


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