Willoughby is the founder of Spokesperson and works to empower people to cycle from marginalised communities.
After being bullied and made to feel isolated they found cycling as a way to boost their confidence, offer freedom of movement and provide a supportive community.
When approached to be included on the 100 Women in Cycling list Willoughby spoke to Cycling UK about how to make the list more inclusive of non-binary and other often excluded communities. We are grateful for their help and we will be working together to improve Cycling UK’s inclusivity.
Willoughby Wren Zimmerman said…
“I’m a non-binary trans man and British-American dual national who lives and works in Cardiff.
“I got into cycling at university as a means of affordable, eco-friendly transportation and participated in Critical Mass rides that built my confidence and gave me a sense of community.
For me, cycling was the antidote to the bullying and harassment I faced as a young queer person
“For me, cycling was the antidote to the bullying and harassment I faced as a young queer person. I worked at Brixton Cycles Co-op for 12 years and founded SpokesPerson in Cardiff in 2019.
“SpokesPerson is a social enterprise that seeks to find creative solutions to systemic inequalities in active travel. As part of this mission, I started the Cardiff Queer Bike Gang, a group that organises all-ability social rides around Cardiff.
“I hope to inspire LGBTQIA+ people to take up cycling for the wellbeing of ourselves as individuals, our community and our planet."
The person who nominated Willoughby for the 100 Women in Cycling said:
“They have fantastic ideas, energy, positivity and a creative flair. Great balance between being an agent for change through advocacy and backing this up by delivering loads of practical projects with marginalised groups.
“They are always looking for ways to inspire and encourage more people to cycle, for example this week offering free bike servicing for COVID-19 key workers. They work so hard but always with a smile! Excellent example of someone who is motivated to improve access for all, and they just quietly get on with it.”