Free breakfasts, bike checks and more

This Thursday, September 12 is National Cycle To Work Day, and it looks like the weather is going to be dry over most of the UK, though it’s also forecast to be overcast and misty in many places.

Nevertheless, it’s worth slapping on your lights and getting out for the round trip to work, not least because in quite a few places you can grab yourself a free coffee courtesy of bike shops that are putting on Cycle To Work breakfasts.

There are some ambitious rides to work in the offing too, like Chris Boulton’s commute. Chris plans to ride from Highclere to his office in central London - 67 miles each way. Trot that out next time your colleagues express amazement at your ten-mile round trip.

Martyn Bolt in his mayoral cycling 'robes'

Our favourite commuter is Martyn Bolt, the Mayor of Kirklees, in Yorkshire. “I have a citizenship ceremony to attend in my capacity as mayor of Kirklees at Huddersfield Town Hall,Martin wrote to tell us.

He has to wear his full mayoral robes for the ceremony, but he’ll be riding to get there.

“I will be cycling in to the event (and no there won’t be a car following me!) wearing my cycling ‘robes’ which have been made for me by local cycling kit manufacturer Force GB.”

Chiswick Business Park in west London, which plays host to companies such as Paramount Pictures, PepsiCo, Starbucks and Walt Disney has recently started a cycling club which rides in Richmond Park on Thursday mornings. During the day a team from Ultimate Bikes will be running a bike servicing sessions, and over lunch riders can sign up for a free bike maintenance workshop which will go
through basic and routine maintenance.

In Crewe, you can get a free breakfast courtesy of the charity Christian Concern which promotes everyday cycle use at St. Pauls, in the centre of Crewe from 7.30am.

Crewe also has Cycle To Work roadshows at three locations during the day, with bike safety marking, travel planning and free bike health checks. Times and venues are:

8.00am – 10.00am Wulvern House, Crewe Business Park, Electra Way, CW1 6GW
12.00pm – 2.30pm Delamere House Car Park, Delamere Street, CW1 2LL
3.30pm – 5.30pm, Halfords, Grand Junction Retail Park, Earle Street, CW1 2RP

All stores in the Cycle Surgery bike shop chain are offering free bike health checks from September 6-12 so riders can make sure their bikes are fit for Cycle to Work Day.

See the Cycle To Work Day website for more. Know of any more Cycle To Work Day events? Let’s have them in the comments.

Our official grumpy Northerner, John has been riding bikes for over 30 years since discovering as an uncoordinated teen that a sport could be fun if it didn't require you to catch a ball or get in the way of a hulking prop forward.

Road touring was followed by mountain biking and a career racing in the mud that was as brief as it was unsuccessful.

Somewhere along the line came the discovery that he could string a few words together, followed by the even more remarkable discovery that people were mug enough to pay for this rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work. He's pretty certain he's worked for even more bike publications than Mat Brett.

The inevitable 30-something MAMIL transition saw him shift to skinny tyres and these days he lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.