Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.Donate to our crowdfunder
I did not learn the joys of cycling in Holland or even in Hexham; I learned them in the constituency of the Minister when I was a young teenager. However, I have gained a far greater appreciation of cycling since becoming the Member of Parliament for Macclesfield. At the elite level, we are fortunate to have the national cycling centre in Manchester, and Team GB were often seen training on the junction between the Cheshire plain and the Peak district, where we in Macclesfield are so fortunate to live. We saw them cycling up the Cat and Fiddle road and clearly setting the standard on how to take elite sport forward.
My area is also privileged to have Dame Sarah Storey, our most decorated Paralympian of all time, who lives in Disley. It is only fitting, but I am delighted that Disley parish council is unveiling a commissioned sculpture in her memory in a few weeks’ time and celebrating her tremendous accomplishments with an amazing cycling day in the village. We are also fortunate enough to have an incredible cycling club, Macclesfield Wheelers, which sets an incredibly high standard with its legendary cycling trials between Macclesfield and Congleton. It is also setting a really high standard as advocates for its pastime and passion, and the club has certainly helped me to gain a greater understanding of what needs to happen to take cycling forward.
What most encourages me is the number of people taking to cycling on their own initiative, whether it is getting out into the Peak District—many MPs have spoken about that—enjoying Macclesfield forest, getting out on the Middlewood way with their families or just taking the bike to go to the shops. The public in Britain get cycling. They understand its benefits, and not only because of the Olympics and the Tour de France, with the great successes of Sir Bradley Wiggins; they are seeing the health and well-being benefits of cycling.