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Sisterhood of travelling cyclists! Muslim women’s cycling group awarded TfL grant to expand into Redbridge

PUBLISHED: 17:00 09 December 2019

Cycle Sisters is a Muslim women's cycle group that was awarded a TfL grant. Picture: Cycle Sisters

Cycle Sisters is a Muslim women's cycle group that was awarded a TfL grant. Picture: Cycle Sisters

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A Muslim women’s cycle group which connects cyclists for social rides was awarded a TfL grant to expand into Redbridge.

The group meets Wednesday mornings term time. Picture: Cycle SistersThe group meets Wednesday mornings term time. Picture: Cycle Sisters

Cycle Sisters started in Walthamstow in 2017 as an informal group where members meet for a weekly social ride every Wednesday morning during term time for a two-hour ride.

Last month the group was awarded funding by TfL as part of its £400,000 Walking and Cycling Grant, which rewards community and not-for-profit groups that encourage local people to walk and cycle more.

Originally based in Walthamstow the group is expanding to Redbridge thanks to the TfL grant. Picture: Cycle SistersOriginally based in Walthamstow the group is expanding to Redbridge thanks to the TfL grant. Picture: Cycle Sisters

Cycle Sister's founder Sarah Javaid said: "The funding will enable us to set up a new Muslim women's 'Cycle Sisters' group in Redbridge and offer culturally sensitive social led rides alongside cycle skills training.

"With our community-based approach we are able to break down many barriers to cycling for Muslim women and by extension enable and inspire whole families to get cycling."

Cycle Sisters out on a ride. Picture: Cycle SistersCycle Sisters out on a ride. Picture: Cycle Sisters

Cycle Sisters consists of cyclists who have ridden on the road before but can use help to build up their confidence by cycling as part of a group.

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Sarah said: "This is important as we are helping to make cycling more inclusive and ensure the life-changing benefits of cycling reach across communities."

The TfL Walking and Cycling Grant aims to address the barriers that prevent people from getting active with the winning projects targeting traditionally underrepresented groups.

Will Norman, TfL's Walking and Cycling Commissioner said: "There are so many benefits to walking and cycling from keeping fit to improving wellbeing and we want everyone in London to experience these benefits regardless of their age, ethnicity or physical or mental health."

The Cycle Sisters have cycled all over London starting from their Walthamstow base but the grant money will allow them to focus on a dedicated Redbridge group that will start in January.

The rides start at 9.15am every Wednesday morning during term time and end between 11.30-12pm.

There is always a snack break at a local cafe at some point during the ride and they have a limited number of bikes available to hire for those who don't own one.

For more information go to https://www.facebook.com/CycleSistersWalthamstow.

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