Meet our great panellists for the 2014 Women’s Cycle Forum
Sue Abbott is an Australian convict and an anti-helmet law activist from Down Under. She contests all her helmet fines in New South Wales courts with varying degrees of success, and is soon to try her luck in a South Australian one. With her criminal conviction for not wearing a helmet whilst riding a bicycle, Sue can no longer entertain hopes of returning to the US anytime soon – the US’ loss for sure.
She blogs at http://freedomcyclist.blogspot.com.au/, instagrams @freedomcyclist and tweets @freedomcycliste (& apologises for the confusing use of an ‘e’ in the twitter handle – a random internet thing!)
Dr. Rachel Aldred is a Senior Lecturer in Transport at the University of Westminster and runs the University’s MSc in Transport Planning and Management. She researches and writes about cycling, and is an Elected Trustee of the London Cycling Campaign, also running their Policy Forum. She tweets at @RachelAldred and her personal website is rachelaldred.org
Claire Connachan sits on the CTC Scotland committee and is one of the founding members of Belles on Bikes Edinburgh, a social cycling group for women. A daily commuter as well as utility and leisure cyclist, she blogs about her cycling adventures at Claire Cycles and is particularly keen to encourage more women to get on their bikes and discover (or rediscover) cycling. In her day job she works for a national youth work charity in a communications role with a specialism in digital and social media.
Sara Dorman is a utility cyclist who likes using her bike to get around. A newcomer to cycle campaigning, she became involved in the run up to the first Pedal on Parliament in 2012. She is also a member of Edinburgh’s transport forum and Merchiston Community Council. With two small children, she’s also been drawn into issues around family cycling and the school run. She blogs about all these at http://deceasedcanine.blogspot.co.uk/
Sally Guyer is the founder & owner of The Cambridge Raincoat Company, former Publicity Officer for Cambridge Cycling Campaign. Commuter cyclist on upright bike (currently a Pashley). Self-appointed cycling advocate. Huge fan of Mikael Colville-Andersen & the many global cycle chic groups that Copenhagen Cycle Chic has spawned. Business awards winner. Also teacher, mother and lone parent.
Without any formal training or experience in the worlds of fashion or manufacturing Sally set up her own business in 2010 to make what she couldn’t find as a busy consumer – stylish, high quality, practical raincoats to wear on & off her upright bicycle.
The Cambridge Raincoat Company started trading in April 2011 and was selling internationally online from the start thanks to social media offering a direct route to like-minded souls. As a company, Cambridge Raincoats are committed to normalizing the image of cycling worldwide and continuing to promote bicycles as the best form of transport for individuals, societies and the planet.
Jo Holtan is the Founding Editor of Bikeable Jo, a website which celebrates the expanse and creativity of the bikeable style in Edinburgh and beyond. She has recently teamed up with Sarah Drummond and Matt Lowell from Snook to deliver the brand new Cyclehack, a 48-hour event aimed at making cities more cycle friendly. Running the 20-22 June at the Whisky Bond in Glasgow, Cyclehack has grown to include Cyclehack events in Beirut, Tbilisi, Vancouver, Belfast, and Melbourne. By day, Johanna runs an award-winning global citizenship project at the University of Edinburgh and co-curates Trade School Edinburgh.
Polly Jarman is the Development Officer for Play on Pedals, a new project supported by players of People’s Postcode Lottery and winner of the 2014 Dream Fund. Play on Pedals is an exciting partnership between CTC – the national cycling charity, Cycling Scotland, Glasgow Bike Station and Play Scotland to enable all four year-olds across Glasgow to learn to ride a bike before starting school. The project will use a combination of balance and pedal bike cycle training to communities across the city and train community leaders to deliver sessions and carry out basic bike maintenance. Play on Pedals is a games legacy for Glasgow and hopes to inspire a future generation to enjoy cycling.
Polly is new to Glasgow, having previously worked within the community engagement and environmental education sector in both London and South America. She has a degree in Anthropology and Sociology and enjoys supporting young people living in cities to utilize and engage with their surrounding environments, whether through planting trees or riding bikes!
She is a keen cyclist, commuting daily, exploring weekly and touring the UK and Europe whenever she can.
More information about the Play on Pedals project can be found via twitter @PlayOnPedals or www.playonpedals.wordpress.com
Jayne Rodgers writes: “I have been working in cycling and sustainable travel for about 12 years now and have recently moved to north Wales from Portsmouth to take up the post of Inclusive Cycling Officer for the North West with the CTC. The Inclusive Cycling Champions programme is a CTC project, working in partnership with Cycling Projects, and is funded by the Big Lottery. The aim of the programme is to support and develop the existing centres all over the country as well as assist some new ones to get going in areas where there is currently no provision. Inclusive cycling is all about giving everyone, of all abilities, the opportunity to ride and enjoy riding and the centres I work with offer a chance to experience the joy of riding. Operating in many diverse settings, often on a very limited budget and usually heavily reliant on a community of volunteers including parents and carers for organising and running the sessions. They all have a range of adaptive cycles including two-wheelers with low access to hand cycles, side-by-side tandems, trikes, quads and wheelchair carrying bikes to name a few.
“My background is in cycle training for the elderly, women, children and families as well as leading family rides and activities. I have worked for a local authority on various behaviour change programmes and designed and managed cycling infrastructure projects. Making cycling possible for everyone, regardless of ability, is a challenge for policy makers and highway designers. The provision of space that is suitable for all users including trikes, quads and tandems will mean provision of space that is suitable for everyone, including less confident riders, families and children riding alone. I have two children of my own with a gap of about 15 years between them this has made me acutely aware of the changes in the freedom to ride since my childhood in the 60s and 70s through my son growing up in the 80s and 90s to my 11 year old daughter cycling now. I believe that the challenge for us as a society is to work towards spaces where we are confident that everyone can ride as part of their everyday lives. Heightened awareness of inclusive cycling projects and the needs of the participants will contribute a wealth of insight into what is required to make that happen spatially and culturally.”