Tales of Inspiration

We’ve been overwhelmed by the feedback we had for our event last Tuesday! Thank you so much to everyone who attended, and particularly to all the speakers who came to share their stories. We were so pleased to be able to give a platform to these amazing women to showcase their amazing capacity.

Lady Pedal & speakers
From left to right: Hannah, Emma, Kathy, Liz, Mary, Glynis, Patrycja

All of our speakers recounted their adventures in an accessible and 100% genuine way, without giving away any hints that they were even remotely aware of just how remarkable their achievements were! Open, friendly and approachable, we had a perfect balance of encouragement, expertise, technical know-how, enthusiasm and a damn good dose of determination.

Cycling to equality – the chain that set women free


Glynis Francis kicked off our talks, tracking the development of her involvement in cycling from a young age, in a time when women were a rarity in the world of competitive cycling and how she went on to make a name for women in cycling, winning medals and becoming the (as yet undisputed) world’s fastest grandma!

Her advice to new cyclists was to surround yourself with can-do people, the only thing holding you back is yourself!

And our favourite quote of the night:
“Glynis how do you feel when you’re on a bike?”

Making cycling safe and fun

Our second speaker proved her determination before she even arrived! A part time ICU and community nurse, Kathy West jumped on a plane up from the Isle of Wight after finishing her night shift and just about made it to us in time to give her talk!65a

Kathy came from a Mountain Biking background and was surprised to find herself in the saddle of a roadie, but she’s certainly wasted no time in getting properly stuck in; she gave us a whistlestop tour of her cycling adventures with groups around Spain and Australia, and shared how jumping on her bike has led to a blossoming international romance!
One of the most important parts of Kathy’s talk was the importance of wearing a helmet, she’s destroyed several over the years and apparently is the butt of many helmet crash test jokes! Kathy also highlighted the importance of setting up your bike correctly as this can make the difference between a long hard slog and an enjoyable ride.

Advice to cyclists was to get out in the countryside and raise your levels of awareness – feel the elements and take a good look around you. “You’ve got to enjoy what you do”.

10 lessons I learned on the road

.Kathy’s sentiment was echoed by Liz Leakey – a freelance web designer turned adventurer – who praised the bicycle for allowing us to engage with the world around us.


After spending her twenties pursuing her career, Liz was able to go freelance and undertake a cycling adventure that would take her from New Zealand, across Asia and Europe to return to the UK. Her talk was structured around the things she learnt along the way:

  1. Be in the moment
  2. Your body can do amazing things
  3. Women are wherever you go
  4. To travel is to be rich
  5. Bikes are not all that special
  6. The world is full of kindness
  7. Smile and smile again
  8. Know thyself
  9. Every relationship deserves a bike ride
  10. Paradise is yours….

With all the trials and tribulations of such a bold undertaking, Liz found that she was not alone, recounting one particular instance when she had been taken in by a women who “just knew that I needed looking after”. The nurturing instinct is strong and we are never alone.

Woman in the workshop: the story of a reluctant mechanic

Mary & Glynis

Mary Clark told how cycling has been an ever present part of her own story from day one. Brought up in a car-less household, Mary would be hard pressed not to cycle!

As she grew up, she began to engage (reluctantly) with the mechanics side, eventually leading to employment with a long stream of bicycle cooperatives beginning in Brixton – “I didn’t much care for the mechanics. I loved the bikes, & I loved the Brixton people”.

Mary didn’t particularly enjoy the experience of  being a bicycle mechanic, largely because she didn’t feel like she was very good at it! However, she now works at BikeRight! as the lead mechanic, with 30 years experience under her belt where she has built her confidence to the point where she is now more than happy to claim her identity as a bike mechanic – “I am one of them, and I’m one of the best”


Thank you to all our speakers and all who attended – if you would like to feed back on this event, would be interested in hosting or participating in future events of this type, or would like to contact anyone involved, please don’t hesitate to get in touch via our contact form or email ladypedalmcr@gmail.com!

Photos: Mike Robinson (TFGM), Liz Leakey


Critical Lass World Record Attempt!


Lady Pedal will be leading the Chorlton feeder ride to Alexandra Park to make history for women’s cycling in Manchester!

We’ll be leaving Chorlton Park at 1pm to join the main event. We’ll pedal at a chilled lovely pace around the park, up the Fallowfield Loop and onto Alex Park. We’ll have qualified Ride Leaders on hand to help keep the group together.

The main mass participation ride will be happening in Alexandra Park where all the feeder rides will come together for one bulk beaming pedal around the park – HOW MANY PEOPLE CAN WE GET!!??? Here’s what’s happening:
>> Free bike tuning & maintenance advice
>> Cyclist’s Speaker’s Corner – get your voice heard!
>> Learn2Ride sessions
>> Tasty grub & drinks at the Teahive Cafe
>> Silly bike games for kids and adults with ACE prizes to be won [more info to follow]
>> Women’s cycling photo exhibition
>> Safety goodies & bike training information from the TfGM bike trailer

It’s going to be a great day! Please please spread the word to anyone you think might be interested.

**** Guys are absolutely welcome as well – this event is by no means excluding you awesome lot – but designed to help highlight IWD and help develop women’s cycling in our fine city… Would be beyond great if you could join us – as individualsl or with your family & friends ***

Main event page: https://beta.tfgm.com/cycling/women-on-wheels

Lady Pedal Life Drawing

Celebrating International Women’s Month

Bike/Body Life Drawing
Learn about the mechanics of your bike and your body in a guided drawing session.

This is a session for women to learn about the way their bodies and their bikes work and also participate in a consciousness-raising discussion about your body’s relationship to your bike, the world and your mind.

All bodies are good bodies!

You will be guided through the drawing session, learning about significant body and bike bits as you go. The discussion aims to promote body positivity and explore women’s attitudes to their bodies, cycling and physical and mental well being.

Date: Sunday 12th March, 2.30pm
Venue: The Wonder Inn
Cost: FREE!  Limited to 15 places. Please book your space using the ticket link:

Just bring yourself-all materials provided but feel free to bring your own too.

Inclusive of: Anyone who identifies as a woman.

Women’s Cycling Stories – An evening of Tales in the Saddle

cyclingstories03-17(3)web.JPGCycling stories that’ll take you for a ride…

Lady Pedal are delighted to be hosting an evening of inspirational talks and stories from a number of women who have had a wide range of cycling experiences, as part of our program of events for Manchester’s International Women’s Festival 2017, kindly funded by Women On Wheels.

From a diverse array of backgrounds, we’ll have an interesting panel of speakers, both from Manchester and further afield, to engage and inspire before we open the stage to members of the public to share their own thoughts on everything cycling from mayhem and mishaps, to life changing experiences.

Date: Tuesday 7th March, 6pm
Venue: Sandbar
Cost: FREE! – but please register via the link below as capacity will be limited!

These exceptional 4 women will be sharing their stories, final timings and line-up:
6.10pm – Glynis Francis: “Cycling to Equality – the chain that set women free.”
6.35pm – Kathy West: “Making cycling safe and fun”
7.00pm BREAK
7.15pm – Liz Leakey: “10 lessons I learned on the road”
7.40pm – Mary Clark: “Woman in the workshop – the story of the reluctant mechanic.”
8.05pm BREAK
8.20 Open mic! – share YOUR cycling story + discussion
If that wasn’t exciting enought, early arrivals will get a free slice of the renowned Sandbar pizza!

Confidence building and social ride – TOMORROW

Sunday 19th February – next Lady Pedal social ride!

A chilled circular route for all levels and abilities.
We’re also doing a special morning session for anyone who would like to build their confidence cycling on roads!

Sunday 19th February 2017
MEET: Tea Hive in Alexandra Park

11am – Confidence building session
12 noon – Lunch (picnic or TeaHive)
1pm – Social ride
LEVEL: For everyone
DURATION: ~2 hrs

ROUTE: Salford circular route beginning and ending at the park, sticking mainly to cycle paths and quiet routes where possible.

We will have a trained bikeability ride leader and experienced cyclists on hand to coach uncertain cyclists through the basic theory of road cycling in the cafe.
You’ll get a chance to try this out in the park or local roads before lunch then we strongly encourage anyone who comes for the morning to join a group of more experienced riders in exercising their new confidence after lunch!

(please let us know in advance of you intend to borrow a bike)

We will have tools on hand for basic adjustments, puncture repair and tyre pumping so don’t let your bike hold you back, or if you don’t have a bike at all, we can lend you one! Courtesy of Women on Wheels. 🙂

Lady Pedal Training and News

We have been busy beavering away behind the scenes and we’re very excited to announce that we’ve been awarded funding from our wonderful supporters at Cycling UK! So expect to see more workshops, rides and training from us!

In addition to this we will be working in close collaboration with Women on Wheels, TFGM and Manchester City Council to deliver a number of events for International Women’s Day throughout the month of March – keep an eye out for a full calendar of events coming soon!


The maintenance training session at Rapha last month proved to be hugely popular, although space was limited! Pending feedback and interest we are well prepared to put on another session in future – Let us know if you would be interested!

Many thanks to the Rapha for the space, TFGM for helping to organise and fund, and especially to Revolve mechanics for delivering the training!

In other mechanics news – one of our Lady Pedallers is currently being trained up by BikeRight!, so next month we’ll have our very own qualified Lady Pedal mechanic!

We’re aiming to hold some more training opportunities in April.
In the meantime, there are still plenty of opportunities to learn with TFGM , as well as the free women’s bike workshop 6-8pm every last Thursday of the month at Cycle Republic in the city centre. Call 01612360216 or pop in store for more information or to book your place.


Lady Pedal Maintenance Training

If you have not registered and received confirmation you will not be able to participate due to limited facilities. 

This Sunday 15th January, Lady Pedal is offering a free, full day, intermediate bike maintenance course run by a qualified instructor in collaboration with TFGM. Open to Lady Pedallers and affiliates. Designed for those with a pre-existing interest in cycling/bikes who are able to carry out basic procedures such as puncture repairs.

The course content will be flexible and may cover

  • Brake adjustment. Inspection/fitting inner and outer cables – lubricating
  • Gear adjustment/indexing. How a derailleur works. Inspection/fitting of cables – lubricating
  • Chains – Lubrication/Inspection/ break and re-join
  • Adjusting hub bearings
  • Bottom bracket and headset inspection/adjustment
  • Recommendations for routine servicing
  • How to identify an out of true wheel
  • Q+As

Tools / bike stands will be provided. Please bring your own bike to work on (in specific cases a bike could be provided – please message us to arrange).

Tea and coffee will be available but lunch is not provided
Hosted by Rapha Cycle Club in Manchester city centre.

Once booked, if you are subsequently unable attend the course you must cancel your booking and/or inform TfGM as soon as possible.
Please note these courses are only open to adults (16+)

Further information about the course can be requested from cycling@tfgm.com or ladypedalmcr@gmail.com