Claire at Dandelion

Claire Grave

Our March 2024 Belle


A second hand starter

My first bicycle was a red second hand bicycle with a basket on the front. I was about nine and learned to ride on it as it meant I could join my friends and cycle to the local shops and buy comics and sweets on a Saturday morning.

At secondary school I moved up to my brothers outgrown unisex bicycle, it had three gears which was a new experience and I enjoyed cycling to school with friends for several years. The journey was about 20 mins there and 25 mins home as there was a steep hill so that was my cycling for years.

And so to university

I went to university in London but in the late seventies cycling in London was not considered a option! The narrow roads and heavy traffic with double deckers and heavy goods vehicles were far too scary let alone the problem of bicycle security anywhere in London.

After university my husband and I moved to Bingley because he had a job in Leeds and I got a job in Bradford. Cars were transport now as we commuted separately to our jobs. Cycling was now a childhood memory.

Then time passes by and next comes the fun

On my fiftieth birthday my husband got me a mountain bike (which I had asked for) as I was over weight and did absolutely no exercise and felt I had start somewhere. So I restarted cycling with him and slowly began to get fitter and lose weight and feel a lot better.

My husband was aware of Bingley Belles long before me and had suggested I join as he had seen a group of them coming out of Beck Lane “and they looked to be having great fun”.

During covid I had got into the routine of walking down to Bingley to buy groceries and one day I noticed the person walking her dogs in front of me was wearing a Bingley Belles hoodie so I asked her (Sarah) how to join and very quickly did!


So all I can add is when you join Bingley Belles you go on cycle rides “and have great fun”

Claire Grave's favourite ride

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