Dartmoor is awesome!

If you have visited Dartmoor National Park in Devon, or just seen jaw-dropping pictures, you will probably agree that Dartmoor is one of the UK’s finest landscapes. It is an unique place rich in history, natural habitats, commanding tors and river valleys and a diversity of wildlife including many rare species. In short, it is AWESOME!

And exploring Dartmoor by bike is even more awesome! (as well as environmentally friendly)

Cycle South Dartmoor is proud to support the BIG BIKE REVIVAL’s first local cycle ride of the summer – a BIKE BUS RIDE that takes riders in a minibus and their bikes on a trailer from South Brent and Buckfastleigh onto the higher moor, for a group cycle ride starting from Combestone Tor (near Venford Resevoir) returning to Buckfastleigh and on to South Brent.

The ride will include stops at Holne Church, Holne Community Shop and Hembury Hill Fort for a picnic lunch and a short talk from former Natural History Museum’s Head of Entomology, Malcolm Scoble.

This social cycle ride is on Saturday 24 July 2021 from 9am-2pm and it is FREE to residents of TQ10 and TQ11. It is subsided by support and funding from national and local organisations, and delivered by Be Buckfastleigh in partnership with Sustainable South Brent.

Places are limited and to take part you must book, either on EVENTBRITE or by contacting Be Buckfastleigh direct.

Book time to learn from a cycling pro

The second in a series of BIG BIKE REVIVAL summer cycling events has been announced: LEARN HOW TO FIX & MAINTAIN YOUR BIKE. The Big Bike Revival is all about helping everyone and anyone to begin or return to cycling.

This is your chance to book one or more FREE sessions with an ace bicycle mechanic to learn the important fundamentals from the experts, and pick up useful skills. BOOK ON EVENTBRITE or drop in to Be Buckfastleigh at ‘The Living Room’, 55 Fore Street, Buckfastleigh, and ask them to book a place for you.

Be sure to book in advance to join any, or all, of these free, small group sessions being held at Victoria Park, Buckfastleigh from 10am-2pm. If you can, please bring a bike; preferably your own bike! : )

  • 10 am -10.45 am: Tyres & punctures: tyre sizing, replacement & removal, puncture repair.
  • 11 am-12.30 pm: Drive & gears: chain fixing & maintenance, how gears work & their maintenance.
  • 1 pm -1.45 pm: Brakes: adjustment & maintenance of your brakes.
  • 1.45 am -2 pm: Quick questions: session with two bicycle mechanics.

The Buckfastleigh event is for anyone living in TQ11 who would like to learn how to fix or maintain their bike, especially those who are not regular riders, or who might otherwise not be able to afford the cost of cycle repairs. The South Brent event is for anyone residing in TQ10 postcode area.

Come say hello and see what’s happening locally. Because part of the summer programme will be a series of group cycle rides every Saturday for the rest of July and throughout August – for people of all cycling abilities, and to join up the communities of Buckfastleigh and South Brent.

CLICK HERE TO BOOK FOR BUCKFASTLEIGH EVENT. CLICK HERE TO BOOK FOR SOUTH BRENT EVENT.

Cycle South Dartmoor is supporting the BIG BIKE REVIVAL because we as a project group want to make cycling accessible to everyone, to encourage people who don’t cycle to have a go and to encourage people to cycle more often. As our aim is to establish safe, accessible cycle paths for users of all ages and abilities, that connect Dartmoor and rural communities.

This FREE ‘Learn How to Fix & Maintain Your Bike’ workshop and other BIG BIKE REVIVAL events throughout the coming summer are possible through the funding and support from:

Big Bike Revival + Dr Bike : Launch events!

We are excited to announce a summer of Big Bike Revival cycling events starting with two launch dates: 3 July in Buckfastleigh’s Victoria Park, and 4 July at South Brent’s ‘The Rec’ Palstone Park. Big Bike Revival is all about helping everyone and anyone to begin or return to cycling.

Book a free Dr Bike session with an ace cycle mechanic for a Safe Cycle Check…wheels, brakes, gears, tyre pressure, lights, pedals & more!

Do you have a ‘previously loved’ pair of wheels and want to get into cycling again for your health and wellbeing? Has your bike been collecting dust for a while and you want to feel safe getting back in the saddle? Maybe your child has an old or secondhand bike that you want to be sure is safe to ride or use at the skate park?

Bring your bicycle to Victoria Park, Buckfastleigh on Saturday 3 July for a Free Bike Safety Check at Dr Bike. We are launching a summer of cycling events: BIG BIKE REVIVAL including a Dr Bike workshop.

Do come along, but it’s best to book your slot in advance on Eventbrite or contact Be Buckfastleigh. The event will open 10.00am and finish 2.00pm.

We are particularly interested in hearing from people who live in Postcode Area TQ11, of all ages and cycling abilities, especially those who are not regular riders, or who might otherwise not be able to afford the cost of cycle repairs.

The session may include small repairs to your bike depending on what it needs and if parts are on hand, to make sure your bicycle is safe to ride.

Because this is the launch of the BIG BIKE REVIVAL there will be other organisations with information about cycling. Please come along to find out how cycling locally can be fun, safe and rewarding.

We are able to offer this Dr Bike workshop and more BIG BIKE REVIVAL events throughout the coming summer thanks to support and funding from. Click on the name of the organisations below to find out more about them: 

The next BIG BIKE REVIVAL event in Buckfastleigh will be Sunday 18 July, Victoria Park, Buckfastleigh: Learn How to Fix & Maintain Your Bike. 

If you follow Be Buckfastleigh on Eventbrite, Facebook, Instagram or Twitter, or sign up to their Newsletter, they will let you know when bookings open for this workshop. Just click on one of the links below:

EVENTBRITE

FACEBOOK

INSTAGRAM

TWITTER

NEWSLWTTER SIGN-UP

French ‘cash for clunkers’

Under a newly proposed scheme, French citizens will be offered €2,500 (the equivalent of about £2,174) toward the purchase of a new electric bicycle. The goal is to replace old, inefficient gas-powered vehicles with zero-emission electric bicycles and help reduce transportation-based carbon emissions. French lawmakers have approved the measure in a preliminary vote. The thinking is that a better solution to address travel-based carbon emissions is not just to make cars greener, but to also reduce their number. Here’s a link to the article – https://electrek.co/2021/04/14/france-3000-e-bike-credit-to-trade-in-old-gas-car/

e-BIKES have potential for greatest impact in Rural areas

A recent study in May 2020 carried out by researchers at the University of Leeds has found that:

  • Electrically-assisted bicycles (e-BIKES), if used to replace car travel, have the capability to cut car carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in England by up to 50%. (about 30 million tonnes per year)
  • The greatest opportunities are in Rural and sub-urban settings. (City dwellers already have many low-carbon travel options, so the greatest impact would be on encouraging use outside urban areas.)
  • There is scope for e-BIKES to help people who are most affected by rising transport costs.

e-BIKE use has the potential to improve equity.

Rural areas have fewer public transport or alternative transport options to fit their travel needs. Due to distances between rural villages and towns and few safe cycle routes between them, and the often hilly landscapes in rural areas, walking and standard cycling are not always the best modes of transport to replace a high proportion of car travel.

However e-BIKES, compared with conventional cycles, have considerable range and enable cyclists of many different ages and abilities to tackle difficult hills and routes, thereby making e-BIKES a realistic alternative mode of transport for work, shopping, exercise, tourism, etc. to replace a large number of local car journeys in rural environments.

Policy makers need to move beyond the changes they think people would like and instead plan for a transport system which reduces its CO2 emissions as well as providing efficient, accessible mobility for all.

Diagram showing the hierarchy of different modes of travel according to environmental impact
HIERARCHY OF MODES OF TRANSPORT: HIGHEST (AIR TRAVEL) TO LOWEST (WALKING) ENVIRONMENTAL IMPACT BY CO2 EMISSIONS

Read the report here.

Here is a link to Cycling Week’s online review of the best electric bikes for 2020.

Best cycling in Devon gets national coverage

It’s no surprise to local cyclists, walkers and people who love to get out and explore Devon and Dartmoor, that this part of the UK makes for great cycling. The Guardian’s article ‘Five of the best scenic bike rides in the West Country‘ by Jack Thurston covers ‘Widecombe Way‘ a cycle route that starts in nearby Bovey Tracey, and ‘The Dart Circular‘ again nearby but this time Totnes, describing the type of ride as “Devon lanes by a majestic river“. Well that can only be the River Dart. Our project team continues to pursue plans for our cycle path so that it connects to the wider network of cycling routes in Devon and one day soon we hope our route will connect up to these two wonderful Devon routes covered in national press! Here’s a link to the article – Five of the best scenic rides in the West Country | Travel | The Guardian

Ashburton – Buckfastleigh – South Brent… Feasibility Study

The project group has managed to raise the money needed to commission SUSTRANS to carry out a feasibility study for a proposed mixed-use path, enabling walkers and cyclists to travel safely between the centres of these three settlements. A key consideration of this route is to enable young people to cycle safely to and from school at South Devon Community College.

We raised £3550 by donations from:
£500    Buckfastleigh Town Council (Mayor’s Fund)
£500    Asbhurton & Buckfastleigh Hospital League of Friends
£2000 Dartmoor National Park Authority
£300    South Hams District Council
£250    South Brent Parish Council

We are very grateful to these donors for supporting this project.

The appraisal has been carried out and the final proposal should be available shortly – watch this space!