In the 20 years since the opening of the National Cycling Centre in Manchester, the home of British Cycling, the sport has seen unprecedented growth and success in the UK.
Two British winners of the Tour de France, Olympic & Paralympic gold medals galore and with over two million people now riding their bike at least once a week, there has been much to celebrate over the last two decades.
To mark the 20th anniversary, the Museum of Science & Industry, based in Manchester, will open their Pedal Power exhibition on 19 July celebrating Manchester’s rich cycling past.
Housed in the atmospheric highlights gallery within the Museum’s Station Building, the intimate space is the ideal setting to fully showcase and immerse visitors into the world of cycling.
The exhibition will include a world championship rainbow jersey won by Reg Harris, the man who did more than anyone to put cycling on the map in this country in the middle of the last century.
The exhibit will also explore how Manchester came to be the home of British Cycling while visitors will be able to enjoy the exhibition’s interactive element, pedaling a stationary bike to test themselves against the best in sport on Pedal Power’s very own simulated race-track.
British Cycling chief executive, Ian Drake, said: “Manchester has provided a magnificent home for British Cycling and the people of Manchester can take pride in the role their city has played in turning Britain into the world’s leading cycling nation.
“This is a city used to sporting excellence but the success British Cycling and Manchester has shared is measured, not just in terms of gold medals and Tour de France winners but also in the millions of people who have been inspired to get on their bikes.
“Very little of that would have been possible without the National Cycling Centre and, in its 20th anniversary, the Pedal Power exhibition is a timely reminder of its importance to Manchester and the country as a whole.”
Meg McHugh, Curator of Industrial Heritage at the Museum explains the driving force behind the project: “With the Tour de France kicking off in Yorkshire in the weeks before the exhibition opens and just a few days ahead of the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow it is such a great time to instil in future generations of cyclists the part that Manchester has played in Britain’s love and success of this fantastic sport.”
For more information about how to get into cycling visit www.britishcycling.org.uk/getinvolved