HSBC UK Breeze launched in Wales in 2014. Recently, three enthusiastic cyclists from Bridgend have taken up the gauntlet and brought Breeze to Bridgend.
Angela Mahoney, Kirsty Rees and Mikayla Jaques began running rides in the region in the Autumn 2016. Angela who ran her first ride from Porthcawl, on the 3rd December said: “HSBC UK Breeze is still quite new to Bridgend, but we have a lot of women following our Facebook page and asking questions about the rides, which is encouraging to see”.
HSBC UK Breeze programme was introduced by British Cycling in order to tackle the inequality between the number of male and female cyclists across the UK. It is a female only cycling programme which is aimed at helping women feel confident and comfortable whilst going on a bike ride. These rides, run by women, are aimed at providing a nurturing environment in which women can gain confidence in their cycling abilities, and make lifelong friends along the way.
Since the first ride in Bridgend, the HSBC UK Breeze Champions have organised 2-3 rides a month, with distances ranging from 10 miles to 25 miles. Rides often include visits to Margam Park, Kenfig Nature Reserve and Rest Bay.
They have also formed some fantastic partnerships in the region, including the local bike shop ‘Onit Cycles’ and Porthcawl RFC. There are now regular rides running from Porthcawl RFC, who are happy for Champions and participants to use their facilities including free car parking, toilets and the bar, where hot refreshments can be obtained, pre or post ride.
Onit Cycles have run several women only maintenance evenings since the start of the year. These invaluable sessions gave useful information on how to change a tyre, how to check tyre pressure and brakes, and how to wash your bike correctly. So far 26 women have been in attendance at the classes, many of whom have not cycled for years, and are now keen to join our HSBC UK Breeze Champions on regular rides.
To find out more information on HSBC UK Breeze rides and maintenance evenings in the Bridgend region, please visit the ‘Breeze Porthcawl and Bridgend’ Facebook page.
To find a HSBC UK Breeze bike ride closer to home, visit www.letsride.co.uk/breeze