From local to social: one group takes cycling to the next level

social ride bike middlesbrough Tees Valley Riders

Sky Ride Local is a great way to meet new people and enjoy a bike ride, but what if you don’t want the fun to stop there? We spoke to one group who took riding together to the next level and started their own social cycling group.

The Tees Valley Riders are a social ride group born from the success of Sky Ride Local in Middlesbrough; we spoke to Neal from the group to find out how it all started. ‘Many of us were relatively new to cycling and it was Sky Ride Local that brought us together’ Neal told us. ‘Since then we've all become good friends and decided to continue to ride together as the Tees Valley Riders.’

This year they started to use Social Cycling Groups, the free social network for cyclists to publicise their rides and it soon had an impact. ‘We’ve had lots of new faces turn up at our rides – some have come from Sky Ride Local, while others have been new cyclists wanting to ride in a group. Nearly 500 people have joined us on bike rides so far thanks to this social network; it’s been a great recruitment tool for new members.’

This year the group have cycled together almost every Sunday from March to October, including the Coast & Castles Challenge, when a group of 11 cycled from Newcastle to Edinburgh. Also as a fun season finale, the group organised a Halloween themed night ride.

Halloween themed bike ride middlesbrough

Why Halloween we asked? ‘It sounded like a fun thing to do and we’re always looking for new, interesting ways to get people involved in cycling’ Neal said. ‘We’re already planning lots more themed rides for Christmas and next year.’

If you like the sound of the Tees Valley Riders and their themed social bike rides? Find out more about Social Cycling Groups and join this free social network for cyclists.

Also worth a read:

Now nothing can stop you cycling this autumn

Cycling to work and beyond: one man's story