Could Whitchurch have an inclusive cycling facility akin to the Wheels for Wellbeing charity scheme, now we have a potential location at Mill Springs?
These centres are popping up across the country to help those of all ages and abilities who wish to cycle safely, as well as help the less able enjoy exercise, the outdoors and meeting others.
Inclusivity, well-being, independence…
As well as general support for anyone who wishes to cycle they provide a range of cycles of various types to help both those less able and those who are maybe returning to cycling and to help maintain independence, join in a social activity, improve health, address inequalities and have fun – and with the added benefit that all helps our climate change needs too.
Support for training
Such a centre could provide a location for road safety training for young people, for learning to ride sessions and for confidence building to use our roads.
In addition there may be the opportunity to couple it with a small maintenance/training facility to help people fix their own bikes and learn simple bike care, or for young people to learn about cycle mechanics and repairs for future employment skills.
Mill Springs could be a suitable site with access to the new cycle path, close proximity to open areas for learning/confidence building, easy access to the Skatepark/BMX track and wider routes out into the local countryside.
Could this be for Whitchurch?
Its just an idea at the moment, but one that could grow, Being central also to Basingstoke, Newbury, Andover and Winchester, it might even attract others to our town. Whitchurch could become a true centre for cycling, not just for inclusive cycling but also in attracting visitors to its shops, businesses and the wonderful countryside that surrounds the town.
Anyone up for it as a local project?
Sustrans have a good guide to inclusive cycling here:
CYCLING FOR EVERYONE – A guide for inclusive cycling