Cyclists of all ages are invited to ‘Ride Lancaster’ on Sunday July 10 as part of the Bay Health Festivals organised by University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.
The festivals – running from Thursday 7 July to Sunday 10 July - aim to promote healthy lifestyles and encourage conversation about every aspect of health.
The centre-piece of this year’s event will be a ‘cycling village’ in Lancaster’s Dalton Square, with chance to meet cycling experts and try fun cycling activities.
A section of Lancaster’s one-way system will be reduced to one lane on the morning of the Sunday to allow visitors to enjoy traffic-free riding from the Lune cycletrack to Dalton Square.
UHMBT Lead Chaplain Ian Dewar, the organiser of the festival, said: “Cycling is great way to travel and brings massive benefits in terms of physical and mental health.
“Our cycling village aims to bring people together united by the simple pleasure of riding a bike, and hopefully encourage non-cyclists to give it a go.”
The event will offer the opportunity to get tips and advice on cycling for transport and leisure, and offer the opportunity for bike test-rides and more.
Ian said: “Many newcomers to cycling can feel intimidated by traffic on the roads, which is why we’ll be creating a temporary segregated cycle route as part of this event.
“Traffic will still be able to move through the centre of Lancaster, but cyclists will be given exclusive use one of the lanes of the one-way system for a few hours to encourage beginners and families to join us.”
Dr Andy Knox, Director of Population Health and Engagement for Bay Health and Care Partners, said: “I’m delighted to see Bay Health Festivals organising this fun family event.
“More people riding bikes means better health outcomes, cleaner air and reduced traffic. I’d love to see more people in our region discover the benefits of cycling.
“Climate change is one of our greatest public health issues, and choosing active travel when possible is one of the things we can do that is seriously beneficial for our own health and that of our ecology.”
Councillor Caroline Jackson, leader of Lancaster City Council, said: “Cycling is dear to my heart and I am delighted to welcome this event to Lancaster and with it the opportunity to shine the spotlight on the many benefits cycling has for both physical and mental wellbeing.”
The event in Dalton Square will run from 9.30am to noon on Sunday 10 July. The segregated cycle route will be in place in Water Street, Chapel Street, Rosemary Lane, Stonewell and Great John Street throughout the event.
The event will form part of the wider Bay Health Festivals, including a number of activities in schools, as well as a festival in Barrow on 9 July and a competition to create a recipe for a healthy ‘Bay Wrap’.
Find out more at www.thebayhealthfestivals.org.uk