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BBC Radio 4 series explores history of the bicycle

Ten 15-minute shows over next fortnight trace history of pedal power from origins to present day

BBC Radio 4 has today launched a two-week, ten part series called On Your Bike, presented by Martin Ellis and addressing the history of the bicycle chronologically in 15-minute episodes.

All episodes air at 1545 – a handy time to take a quarter of an hour out of the day for to listen in with a cup of tea and spot of tiffin, if you ask us, and if you missed today’s episode, BBC says it will be up ‘soon’ on the iPlayer.

Tomorrow’s Episode 2 looks at “Hobby Horses, velocipedes and penny farthings, the early evolution of the bicycle, and subsequent episodes this week address how “The development of the safety bicycle allows everyone to take to the road,” (Wednesday), “Cycling, suffragettes and socialism, political pioneers of the open road,” (Thursday) and “The new craze for cycling inspires artists, musicians, writers, sportsmen and gamblers.”

The series resumes next Monday, again at 1545, with Episode 6 which relates how “The bicycle goes to war as thousands sign up to join cyclist battalions in 1914,” and the remaining episodes will be aired at the same time throughout the rest of the week, although no specific details are available as yet.

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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