Sir Chris Hoy was joined by Kelly Brook and 55,000 Londoners as the Mayor of London’s Sky Ride returned to the capital
Over 55,000 people today joined actress and model Kelly Brook, multiple world and Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy and the Mayor of London’s Director of Environment Kulveer Ranger for the Mayor of London’s Sky Ride Central London.
Many more came out to watch and experience the day as cyclists of all ages and abilities took to traffic-free streets for the chance to enjoy the sights of the capital on two wheels.
The event marked the third and final Mayor of London’s Sky Ride of 2011. Sky Ride is a national campaign to get one million people cycling regularly by 2013.
The campaign includes free events, activities, information and support to help and inspire people of all ages and abilities to rediscover the fun they can have on two wheels.
Transport for London (TfL), in partnerships with Sky and British Cycling organised the 11.6km (7.2mile) route, which took in some of the capital’s most iconic landmarks including Big Ben, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, the Mall, Buckingham Palace, The Tower of London and London Bridge.
Joined by Team Sky Cyclists Geraint Thomas and John-Lee Augustyn, participants were treated to a whole host of activities and entertainment along the route and in the green open spaces of St James’s Park.
Highlights included Go Ride a skill based course for kids to take part in and improve their cycling skills, an interactive family zone, buskers along the route providing a soundtrack to the participants’ rides and the ‘Keep Cycling Zone’ which offered hints, tips and advice on all the other fantastic ways to get back on your bike.
Kelly Brook said: "Thank you to everyone who came out and took part in Mayor of London’s Sky Ride. It was a brilliant family day out and it was great to see so many bikes taking over the city’s streets.
"I hope it’s re-ignited everyone’s love of going out for a bike ride and that this is only the start of their cycling journeys."
Multiple world and Olympic champion Sir Chris Hoy commented: "Seeing the Capital by bike with so many people enjoying a day out cycling is a great experience. This is my fourth year at the London Sky Ride and having the opportunity to cycle past some of the world’s most iconic landmarks on traffic free streets is something I always enjoy.
"The best part of this event is that you can take part with family or friends and it doesn’t matter if you’re a novice or more experienced rider. I hope today will have reminded people how much fun can be had from cycling and has encouraged people to get back on their bikes."
Kulveer Ranger, The Mayor of London's Director of Environment, said: "Today's Mayor of London Sky Ride has been a joy, not just for me, but for all the thousands of people who have taken part, young and old, experienced or not, showing a wonderful sense of community.
"This event is proof that the Mayor's cycling revolution which includes the Barclays cycle hire scheme and the new Cycle Superhighways is making a real difference to our city, with more and more of us getting out on our bikes in the capital with confidence."
Corin Dimopoulos Sky’s Director of Cycling said: "I’m delighted thousands of people have had the chance to take part in the Mayor of London’s Sky Ride for the third year running.
"It has been a great day and it’s always so fantastic to see so many people of all ages and abilities enjoy cycling through the city. Through our great partnership with the Mayor of London, TfL and British Cycling, we hope to build towards our aim of getting one million more Britons cycling regularly by the end of 2013."
The event is a major part of the Mayor's cycling revolution, a plan to get Londoners cycling which includes the Barclays Cycle Superhighways, Barclays Cycle Hire and investment in cycle infrastructure, training and education.
In addition, the Mayor has given funds to promote 'biking boroughs' which include Hillingdon and Barking & Dagenham, both of which have hosted Sky Ride events this summer.
The Mayor of London’s Sky Ride Central London is just one of the many ways people can get back on their bikes through the Sky Ride campaign. Sky Ride Local rides are free, local led-rides running every Sunday through the summer until October in and around London and the UK.
There is also the Breeze network - a programme of bike rides and support just for women and Bike Maintenance Workshops will be taking place in London on 23rd and 24th September to help everyone keep riding with confidence.