I think it’s always a good sign when I turn up to an event and there is a good selection of wine bottles, glasses and food already laid out. Not least because it means I’m in the right place...
The right place last night was the Glasgow Bike Station , who were hosting the Glasgow Belles on Bikes first ‘summer social’, to celebrate all that cycling has to offer women and provide an off-bike opportunity for the Belles to meet up and share new ideas for the group. There was also some very eye-catching ladies cycle wear and accessories from Bonny Bikes and Pronto Gara (I fell in love with a pannier handbag ...)
The Belles started out as a Bike Club Scotland project, funded by Cycling Scotland, but has been nurtured and now flourishes under the care of Victoria Leiper since she left Bike Club to join the Glasgow Bike Station. After a series of cycle skills courses and ride leader training the Glasgow Belles now have over 185 members, an active social media site and monthly ‘Fix Your Bike’ ladies only sessions. A group of the Belles ventured out of Glasgow in the spring for a ‘Tour de Islay’, which looked like a great adventure.
From talking to the women last night it seems that the Belles offer just what is needed for many women to get them, and keep them, cycling: a friendly, open group to join that has different levels of cycle rides available and a regular opportunity to learn more about keeping your bike on road without having to go to a male dominated bike shop. From the raucous laughter coming from the Glasgow Bike Station last night it seems the Belles have great fun too..
CTC are hoping to expand the Belles on Bikes project to other parts of Scotland. If you would like to become a ‘Belle’ where you are, helping other women to get cycling, please get in touch:
firstname.lastname@example.org  or you can tweet me @backonmybike
To contact the Glasgow Belles: