All British Cycling sanctioned activity is currently suspended due to the Coronavirus pandemic.
Understandably and inevitably, the ongoing global uncertainty around the pandemic has led to plenty of questions and concerns, and we have done our best below to answer and clarify some of the queries we have received from the cycling community.
This page was last updated on: Wednesday 27 May 2020.
How does the Government’s new guidance impact cycling?
Riding a bike is a great way to stay active, look after your mental health and make every-day journeys, and we applaud the Government’s recent efforts to get more people cycling at this time.
While cycling is now very much encouraged, you must still adhere to the social distancing guidelines set by the UK Government and the devolved administrations. You can find the most up-to-date guidance for riding in Scotland here and in Wales here.
On Wednesday 13 May, the guidance in England is changing. The updated guidance is as follows:
- You may exercise outdoors as many times each day as you wish.
- You can only exercise alone, with those you live with or with up to one person from outside your household. Gatherings of more than two people from different households are not allowed at this time.
- You should maintain a distance of at least two metres from anyone you meet from outside your household while out riding, stopping and waiting for people to pass at a safe distance when necessary. This is particularly important when riding on narrow paths and trails.
- You can sit and rest outside before, during and after your ride.
- You may drive to outdoor publicly accessible open spaces irrespective of distance, but should follow social distancing guidance while you are there.
- In line with UK Government guidance, those aged over 70 should continue to take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their household.
- When cycling in Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland, you should follow the guidance and regulations issued by the relevant devolved administration.
- If you are showing coronavirus symptoms, or if you or any of your household are self-isolating, you should stay at home.
It is important to stress that at this time, when the NHS continues to operate under extreme pressures, it is important that you ride within your ability level and take appropriate precautions.
What will happen if people don't ride responsibly?
While the restrictions on cycling outdoors will be eased from Wednesday 13 May, the Government had made clear that this is contingent upon people continuing to act responsibly.
The infection rate will increase if people begin to break these rules and, for example, start to meet up and ride in groups. This will also trigger the need for further restrictions.
By riding responsibly and following the guidance, you’ll be securing our right to ride outdoors, protecting the NHS and saving lives.
What support is there to help me keep active at this time?
Guidance on riding outdoors can be found in the section above, titled ‘How does the Government’s new guidance impact cycling?’. British Cycling has a number of great initiatives to help people get and stay active at this time, including:
- HSBC UK Let’s Ride Local – A new microsite containing all the information, inspiration and activities you need to enjoy cycling as a family.
- Commute Smart – Learn to commute by bike with confidence through this great series of short videos, covering everything from planning routes to packing kit.
- HSBC UK Ready Set Ride – Our free games and activities are perfect for teaching the little ones how to ride. We split the process into three simple stages: Prepare to ride; Balance; and Pedals.
- British Cycling Ride Series – Virtually rub shoulders with riders from the Great Britain Cycling Team through our popular ride series, delivered in partnership with Zwift.
Sport England is encouraging people to share their own home workouts using the hashtag #StayInWorkOut.
What does this mean for clubs/cycling groups?
As above, our recommendation to clubs is that no organised activity (including rides, training, coaching, events) should take place during this period, in line with government advice on social gatherings and non-essential travel.
We would implore clubs to follow the advice set out in the ‘How does the Government’s new guidance impact cycling?’ section of this page.
What does this mean for coaches, leaders and instructors?
More information on how the UK Government’s new guidance for England impacts one-to-one activity can be found through the button below.
What does the new guidance mean for cycling facilities like pump tracks and outdoor velodromes?
You can now find our guidance for use of use of cycling facilities - both open and restricted access - through the buttons below. Further industry guidance is also available from UK Active and Sport England.
As a British Cycling member, am I still insured to do so?
British Cycling’s third-party liability insurance and legal support and advice member benefits remain in place for all Commute, Ride, Race Silver and Race Gold members who abide by Government guidelines on social distancing whilst out on their bikes.
However, the insurance cover provided to members and clubs could potentially be invalid if a rider/club takes part in a group ride, or any activity which contravenes the clear advice above on social distancing.
Will I get a refund for a British Cycling-sanctioned event I’ve entered which has now been suspended?
Yes. British Cycling is working with sanctioned event organisers to ensure that this process takes place as efficiently as possible. If an organiser is considering rearranging their event to a later date, there is also the option to mutually agree with the rider to carry the entry fee over to the rearranged date.
I’m an event organiser – what should I do next?
Further information for event organisers is available here.
How will this affect my ranking points and my ambitions to move up through racing categories?
We understand that the suspension of all racing will impact riders who are looking to progress through the categories or ranking system, with potentially fewer opportunities to score points. We are continuing to monitor the impact of what this means for our race licence holders, and will provide an update as soon as we can.
Can I organise group activity away from British Cycling?
The decision to extend the suspension of sanctioned cycling activities has again been taken based on Government advice. As such, our recommendation is that no organised activity (including events and group rides) should take place before the dates specified.
Please be aware that if you do run your event in the suspension period, the event insurance will be invalid.
What support is available for cycling businesses?
The sport and the cycling industry are an ecosystem of small businesses and self-employed people who, along with many thousands of volunteers, allow the sport to exist.
Many people and businesses from across our sport will be extremely worried about the immediate and longer-term impact on their lives and livelihoods. British Cycling, Welsh Cycling and Scottish Cycling are in constant communication with UK Sport, Sport England, Sport Wales and Sport Scotland to understand what immediate and long-term support will be available for the sport sector over the coming weeks and months. The sport sector's advocacy organisation, the Sport and Recreation Alliance, is keeping all NGBs updated with guidance.
We are encouraging every person and business owner to turn to your employer (if you have one), your bank and the free HMRC helplines (in England and Wales: 0300 456 3565 In Scotland: 0300 303 0660) to understand what the immediate steps are that you can take to ensure you and your families have enough money to live. There are excellent online resources such as Money Saving Expert which are providing up-to-date advice from financial experts.
Specifically regarding financial pressures for the operators of cycling facilities, we have set up this short survey to better understand the pressures that facilities are experiencing so that we can ask for the support we need from Government.
Sport England and UK Sport have worked with BDO Accountants to create a website containing guidance for clubs, operators and other businesses in the sport sector. To visit the site, click here.
I feel I need to do something to help, how can I?
On Wednesday 15 April we announced that we had donated £100,000 to Brompton's Wheels for Heroes crowdfunder, which is aiming to provide 1,000 new loan bikes for NHS staff. The donation came from the Places to Ride fund, which was set up by Government to secure a legacy from the 2019 UCI Road World Championships in Yorkshire. You can donate to the crowdfunder here.
Still unsure about anything?
Click here to find out the best way to contact British Cycling.