Investment from the new partnership between British Cycling and HSBC UK, which will be received over a number of years, is already making a difference to cycling in Scotland, Scottish Cycling have confirmed.
The investment is enabling the already established HSBC UK Breeze and HSBC UK Ride Social programmes to be expanded across Scotland, with the aim of getting more people on bikes, and www.letsride.co.uk is our new UK wide social cycling platform to find and post rides.
HSBC UK Breeze is the biggest programme ever to get women riding bikes for fun and has been tried and tested across England and Glasgow since the programme first launched back in 2011; the programme has already helped thousands of women dust off their bikes and get cycling. Scottish Cycling believes HSBC UK Breeze, along with HSBC UK Ride Social, will be instrumental in reaching our vision of Developing a Nation of Cyclists.
Led by women for women, HSBC UK Breeze relies on a group of volunteer leaders, known as Breeze Champions, to support other women on free, guided bike rides. HSBC UK Breeze empowers women to change the face of cycling for good and leave a sustainable lasting legacy in their local communities.
To support HSBC UK Breeze and HSBC UK Ride Social programmes, Scottish Cycling has been working with British Cycling to hire a dedicated HSBC UK Participation Programmes Officer to work as an integral part of our Development Team under our Head of Development Vicky Strange from the beginning of August. In parallel to recruitment we have already started to reach out to recruit Breeze Champions across Scotland who will be provided with dedicated training, support and resources to lead rides locally.
With this new support, Scottish Cycling aims to recruit and train 140 Champions across Scotland and reach over 3,000 HSBC UK Breeze participant sessions by the end of year one.
The Participation Programmes Officer will also be responsible for providing leadership to the Scottish Cycling Women’s Development Group and will support the wider coordination and integration of women and girls cycling activity across our programmes with members and stakeholders.
The new post will also ensure that cycling participation activity through Scottish Cycling clubs is aligned and supported, with a particular focus on women and girls. This will include a key role in the coordination of women and girls cycling activity across Scottish Cycling’s five regions.
Craig Burn, Chief Executive Officer at Scottish Cycling said:
“We are delighted that the partnership between ourselves, British Cycling and HSBC UK has given us the opportunity to expand the HSBC UK Breeze and Ride Social programmes in Scotland. This will mean greater opportunities for the development of the sport and will complement the work we are already doing to improve cycling for women in Scotland.
Seeing the impact that the HSBC UK Breeze programme has had on women’s cycling across England and Glasgow, I have no doubt that it will have similar success here in Scotland. By making it an integral part of our existing development team we believe it will help strengthen our development of cycle sport and our overall vision to develop a nation of cyclists.”
Alison McGregor, Chief Executive of HSBC in Scotland, said:
“There are many reasons why people want to get on a bike, but don’t have the opportunity to do so with a friendly group of people whom match their fitness or ability level. I am extremely pleased investment from our partnership with British Cycling is enabling the extension of HSBC Breeze and HSBC Guided Rides to Scotland. This development could make a real difference to those in Scotland who are looking to do more cycling, whether that is for the first time or they need to dust down their bike and get back on the saddle.”