Ever wondered how your commuting experience differs to others? Each month we share the story of a real Cyclescheme cycle commuter and ask them seven questions to sum up their experience from their two-wheeled commute. This month, it's Rosie.
Each month we feature one Cyclescheme participant and share their commuting story. We ask the same seven questions (hence the name, The Cyclescheme Seven) in a bid to build up a picture of cycle commuters across the UK. From John O'Groats to Lands End we scour the country for the real cycle commuters who take to their bike each morning. If you'd like to feature on our website, just drop us a line on: firstname.lastname@example.org with "I'm in' in the subject line.
This month we caught up with Rosie to see how her commute has changed her life.
Where in the UK are you?
Cambridge, the university town.
What was your main motivation for getting a bike through Cyclescheme?
It is a long time since I have owned a car, and I travel by bike on a daily basis, so always need to have one reliably available for use. I keep two bikes in case one is off the road for repairs, and for guests who come to stay. The Cycle to Work scheme was a good way of spreading out the payments.
What bike did you get and why?
I wanted a classic ladies’ bike with an aluminium frame and chose a ‘Parkside 3-speed’ with a basket, with a good quality lock and helmet. I put flowers on the basket so that I can spot my bike among the many thousands in Cambridge.
How much did you spend with your Cyclescheme Certificate?
How often do you commute to work by bike?
Every day. I am not a Lycra-clad super-fast type (but do speed up if a jogger overtakes) but I’m not a fair weather cyclist either so I am out in wind, rain, ice, snow and sleet. It doesn’t actually rain much here. That being said, you have to accept that you will get caught in the occasional downpour.
Where do you commute from and to?
From home to work as a university administrator. It is 3.5 miles each way. Cambridge is not exactly hilly and it is fairly cycle-friendly with an extensive network of cycle paths but many are shared with pedestrians, the roads are busy and there are lots of other cyclists. You need to have your wits about you.
How has cycling affected your daily life - do you feel healthier? Have you saved money?
I like the sense of peace cycling gives, and being able to travel from door to door, independently, without getting stuck in traffic or relying on public transport. It is good exercise, and one part of my journey crosses the river Cam – I see lots of water birds, including kingfishers. It’s not just about saving money.