British Cycling has unveiled plans to get one million more women and girls cycling by 2020.
The British Cycling campaign is being fronted by Becky James, double gold medal winner at the recent World Track Cycling Championships, who claims that women cyclists “don’t feel safe on the roads”. Becky made her comments speaking to BBC Radio Wales’ Good Morning Wales programme yesterday (25 March).
British Cycling said it wants to change the culture and accessibility of cycling. In a plan called ‘A Journey of Inspiration and Opportunity’ British Cycling says that it wants to inspire “more women to cycle more often, be it for fun, health, sustainable transport or winning bike races”.
The plan also outlines British Cycling’s ambitions to improve cycling for women at every level, whether as a sport, a recreational activity, or as a sustainable means of transport – making all of them as accessible for women as they are for men.
However, the British Cycling plan recognises a gender inequality: “The disparity between men’s and women’s participation across all sport is considerable and, in cycling, with a 50-year history of a sport dominated by male road racing, it is not surprising to see those differences.
“The current levels of engagement reflect society, the culture related to women’s sport as well as the perceptions of the sport and its accessibility for women.
“Since 2008, we have started to challenge ourselves about this disparity and there are some positive developments that demonstrate momentum and success in making cycling more accessible for women.”
On the BBC Wales radio show Becky James claimed that safety concerns are more likely to deter women from cycling than men.
Click here to read the British Cycling plan.