Selfie of woman in cycle helmet and sunglasses.


June's Belle, Jeannette, knew she had joined the right group when she took cake to the Bingley Belles AGM.

Hi, I’m Jeanette.

I’ve always loved being on two wheels, but after being introduced to my brothers’ homemade motorbikes at age eight and not understanding how a throttle worked, I decided an engine between my legs was not the best way to experience the joy of two wheels!! (I’ve still got the scars from landing in the raspberry patch!!)

The first recollection of me cycling, I can truly remember, was a very large framed Ellis Briggs drop-handled road bike my dad bought me for my 13th birthday.

He said: “You’ll grow into it.”

A friend and I had huge fun “croggy-ing” around the little village I lived at in East Yorkshire on it. But because it was so tall the only way we could both get off was to fall onto the grass verges!!

I still used this bike when I went to work at Grattans in Bradford. It was great cycling to work avoiding all the morning queues but not so fun cycling uphill after a full night shift!!

I had a break from cycling and owned a horse for a while.

Then aged nearly 40, I had two girls within two years and this meant childcare took priority.

I still had wheels on the prams though!!

I got the girls cycling as quickly as I could (thanks Mr Armstrong).

When the girls were a bit older my friends introduced me to a bit of off-roading, not in Landrovers, just gentle MTB.

I haven’t looked back and have owned a number of bikes since (and gel seats!).

In 2017 my two daughters, tw0 friends and I undertook our first long-distance cycle touring adventure. We cycled the TPT (Trans Pennine Trail) from Southport to Hornsea over several days staying in hotels and eating in ‘Spoons along the 215-mile long route.

The following year – 2018 – three friends and I (cheaper without the girls!! and they had then taken up several C2C cycling adventures commitments of their own with their school) embarked upon an even greater adventure the Avenue Verte (247+ miles) from London to Paris (back on the Eurostar), great fun when you’ve remembered the French drive on the left!!

In 2019, we stayed local and we cycled the Devon C2C from Ilfracombe to Plymouth (about 100 miles) which was very pretty, although believe me, Devon is not FLAT!!

2019 is also when I joined the Bingley Belles. I took cake to the AGM and knew I fitted right in! I’ve met even more friends who enjoyed cycling as much as me.

2020: So no-one going very far but we still all managed to cycle in twos and sixes, which kept everyone mentally and physically healthy.

Now it’s 2021 and hopefully, we are seeing the light at the end of the Covid tunnel.

So I’ve gone ahead and booked with three friends our next adventure for July, a “stayCYCLEcation”. We are taking on a mainly off-road route of 150 miles over five days from Carlisle to Berwick upon Tweed.

I thoroughly enjoy my hours and days out cycling and camping/bunkbarn holidays with friends and with the BELLES (Also thanks cafes, Travelodges, Airbnb and Weatherspoons). I’m not fast, I’m not competent (especially after breaking my elbow six years ago – and maybe my ribs recently) but I will try to give it a go.

Will you?
The adventures are out there no matter how big or small – Enjoy!!!

My Favourite ride is local, up to the dew and doubler stones above Riddlesden. I love it!!!!

Jeanette's favourite ride

Two women standing on a big stone with bikes underneath.

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