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Discover Bristol Rides – 38 cake fuelled days out in 2014

Were you one of the hundreds of people who came on one our popular Discover Bristol Rides in the past year? We did a grand total of 38 rides in the last year, supported by an Active Neighbourhood Grant from Bristol Council.

Looking back the team of enthusiastic volunteer ride leaders can be justifiably proud of the range of unusual and interesting opportunities they created to get on your bike and Discover Bristol. Favourites were the Pub Pitstops, the Tea and Cakes rides, and a ‘Coffee House’ series, as well as exploring historic buildings and lovely local routes such as Coastal Clevedon, Chew Valley Lake or Strawberry Line Rides.

We’ve just fixed the programme for May and June so make a date in the diary to join us. Read the report of the programme here.

Discover Bristol Rides in 2014/15

In 2014 we received an Active Neighbourhood Grant from Bristol Council to support our famous Discover Bristol Rides. From May 2014 to February Bristol Cycling Campaign organised 47 Rides. Some were short urban themed rides aimed at novice cyclists, while others were medium length (30 miles) or more challenging out-of-town rides for the more experienced. 

Our ‘themed’ rides aim to be both interesting and informative but also popular, witty and inventive. Where a theme is successful, we repeat it, such as our Pub Pitstop theme, the Tea and Cakes rides, and a ‘Coffee House’ series. We have also put on short rides that are designed as family events, such as exploring the new ‘trails’ in Leigh Woods, a Cycle Quiz set in a number of local parks, a local ‘picnic’ ride to Frenchay, and a ride to the ‘Nightglow’ event at the Balloon Festival. Another short urban ride series has focused on the detail of locally built infrastructure, giving our members the opportunity to discuss and debate the realities of cycling provision on the public highway. We have some regular partners for such as the Civic Society where rides have a cultural theme, looking at modern architecture or historic buildings for example.

Our medium length rides are purely to enjoy cycling in good company exploring attractive rural routes such as the Coastal Clevedon Ride, Chew Valley Lake or Strawberry Line Rides. Some follow published routes available to anyone via the internet and provide full mapping, graphical presentation, detailed descriptions and points of interest. We have also organised ‘train-assisted’ rides as this greatly expands the range of places within our scope whilst allowing us to promote different modes of cycling such as the use of folding bikes, and related schemes (eg. Brompton Dock). A further series has looked at properties open under the National Garden Scheme and devised routes to visit these gardens for a ‘picnic ride’. We have supported regional events where the venue location ties-in with an enjoyable cycle route, such as the Devizes International Street Festival or the Blagdon Pumping Station Open Day (organised annually by Bristol Water). We have developed Rides with empathetic groups such as the Long Ashton Transition Group who have showed us how they promote a sustainable lifestyle through collective management of a chicken farm.

We also cater for those BCyC members who seek a more challenging and longer Ride. One ride in this category visited a number of churches owned by the Churches Conservation Trust, all in rural Somerset south of Radstock. Another event, led by an experienced cyclist, took a group through the hilly terrain around Butcombe, Nempnett Thrubwell and Hinton Blewett.

The full report of the Discover Bristol Rides is here BCyC Active Neighbourhood Grant Report 2015.

Penny on Discover Bristol rides during the cycle festival

The lovely Bristol Cycle Festival folk have interviewed our Penny (looking very summery) about our rides to Discover Bristol by bike.  

Can’t wait! 


Discover Bristol: Open Doors Day – SAT 14 Sep


START: 10:00am Arnolfini

DESCRIPTION: Leisurely paced ride to a selection of four sites on Bristol Doors Open Day, when many of Bristol’s significant contemporary and historic buildings open their doors to the public. Entrance to all buildings is free. The winner of the UK BREEAM 2010 award for UK’s greenest office and the Bristol’s oldest building, a former Benedictine Priory, are included in the ride.

FOOD STOPS: Morning drinks and a lunch stop, both in cafes.


LENGTH: 15 miles



LEADER: Chris Whitlock

CONTACT (on the day): 07810 785569

Guests are very welcome to join a few of our rides before becoming members. Please contact for further information.


Discover Bristol: Historic Cinemas – Sun 1 Sep


START: 10:00am Arnolfini

DESCRIPTION: A leisurely ride around the sites of Bristol’s forgotten pleasure palaces where before television spoiled everything ordinary people could forget their troubles and enter a fantasy world of escape. We stop and view old photographs of these dream factories in all their former glory.

FOOD STOPS: A choice of pubs or cafes.


LENGTH: 15 miles



LEADER: Roy Brewster

CONTACT (on the day): 07876 075513

Guests are very welcome to join a few of our rides before becoming members. Please contact for further information.


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