Pat Standen, Volunteer Cycling UK Group Secretary

Pat Standen, Volunteer Secretary of Cycle Ayrshire

Pat Standen, Volunteer Cycling UK Group Secretary

Pat and her partner Drew Moyes started Cycle Ayrshire Member Group over 25 years ago. They were both awarded a Certificate of Merit in 2014 by Cycling UK for their efforts. The group has gone from strength to strength and Pat, who was one of Cycling UK's 100 Women in Cycling this year, explains how and why she got into volunteering below:

Full name, occupation, area you live in and name of group or activity you support

Pat Standen, retired, Ayrshire, Cycle Ayrshire.

What made you decide to volunteer your skills with Cycling UK?

My motives were entirely selfish!  In the mid 80s I started cycling again, looked for a group to join but found only racing clubs in Ayrshire and a CTC group in Glasgow, 30 miles away, with rides starting at 9.00am on Sundays - impossible for me by train. The answer -  start an Ayrshire CTC group - was suggested by the Glasgow cyclists I met at the Haddington Birthday rides. Together with my partner Drew, we invited the 60 Ayrshire CTC members to a 40-mile ride - 20 turned up and the rest is history.

How much time were you able to commit?

In the beginning we cycled together once a month. Now we have at least one ride a week, and instead of one ride organiser we have five organisers, over 20 ride leaders and a membership of 250.

What do you support?

Everything, I’m the Secretary and whatever group cycling our members suggest, and will help organise, we try to get up and running. Now our ride repertoire includes ladies, easy, short and fast, weekends away, discovery, off-road….

What is the greatest challenge you have encountered?

Being part of the team organising the 1992 Ayr Birthday Rides. Over 1000 cyclists came and my heart still races when I think of the challenges of organising a big event and the pleasure of seeing so many people enjoying cycling round Ayrshire.

Describe a typical day in your volunteer role.

Usually I’m out on group rides, sometimes leading, sometimes backmarking, but more often just enjoying the ride and chatting to everyone. My Secretary role is keeping the organisation and paperwork ticking over but I spend as little time as possible on that – being out on the bike is what’s really important.

Of all the tasks you've helped on, what are you most proud of?

My proudest moment was when Cycle Ayrshire was presented with a cup as Cycling UK Runner-up Volunteer Group of the Year in 2014. The cup and I were inseparable for the next few months. It travelled in my pannier to cycle rides and was photographed with all our groups.

Has volunteering enhanced your passion for cycling and have you had the chance to get out more on your bike as a result of it?

Being part of Cycle Ayrshire and Cycling UK has introduced me to so many people who love cycling. I never tire of talking or hearing about people, their bikes and cycling. Everyone is different but we all share a passion. New ideas and challenges abound and without the help and encouragement of the group, I would never have cycled up mountains, toured the USA, tackled 100-mile plus rides and gathered so many happy memories.

Could you describe your volunteering experience in three words?

Life-enhancing, invigorating, satisfying

What would you say to someone considering volunteering with Cycling UK?

Do it! In Cycle Ayrshire, we’ve discovered everyone has useful skills whether simply being friendly or sharing bike know-how, making cups of tea or route planning. The list is endless and being part of a group is great fun.


Find out more about becoming a volunteer

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