More than one hundred and twenty people rode, walked, scooted, skated or ran (with and without a pushchair) from Chestnuts Park to Lordship Recreation Ground on the last Sunday in January 2023. It was cold, but the drizzle held off and we covered nearly 4km, bells ringing, wheels spinning, with big smiles on our faces.
The expedition was organised by Haringey Cycling Campaign and Living Streets, led by @rustytrike, and with support from Friends of Chestnuts Park, who keep the grounds so beautiful. We wheeled through a menagerie of wall art created by James Straffon (co-founder and lead artist of the Turnpike Art Group) and ATM, passing mouflon and zebra, heron and fox, hedgehog and kingfisher. The kids were excited to show off their knowledge by shouting out the names of each as we rode past, but the mouflon (a wild sheep native to Cyprus – I had to wiki it when I got home) flummoxed most of us.
In case of puncture or other mechanical mishap, Matt from Dr Bike was on hand to check over bikes, pump up tyres and offer advice before and after the ride, and it was comforting to know that if anyone got a puncture on the way, he was there to help out.
We finished the ride at the Hub in Lordship Rec. The intrepid amongst us – mostly, but not exclusively, people under age 10 – tried out the BMX track loop. The Rec is home to the UK’s first model traffic area, built in the 1930s, but thanks to the ride leader, the marshalls and the kind motorists who stopped to let a trail of 100+ riders, scooters, skaters and walkers go by, we didn’t need a model. We had the real thing. It is lovely to see kids owning their own streets in this way. Roll on quieter streets, healthier air and more kids able to cycle on safe roads.
Look out for the next walk and ride at 11am on Sun 26 Feb which will run from Lordship Rec skatepark to Alexandra Palace
Thanks to Diane Beddoes for the ride report and photos and Jeff Hum for the videos