2012 has been an exciting time for cycling in the UK, It’s profile has been in the forefront of The Olympics and what with Bradley Wiggins Tour victory, and Mark Cavendish’s human rocket impression at the conclusion of many of the Tour stages, it would be hard to find any sport that has benefitted more in the last 12 months.
This has naturally led to more taking up cycling as a means of getting fitter, and a swelling in the Wheelers ranks.
We have welcomed the new cyclist with open arms encouraging them and giving them the oportunity to cycle in some of the finest countryside in Britain.
The influx of new members have presented some challenges to the club, and these have exercised the committee frequently over the last year.
2 of the biggest challenges have been Insurance, and Etiquette on the road.
The Committee decided it was in the interest of all members that they should have Insurance to cover them for liability when riding, a” no brainer” one would think, so members were asked to declare on their renewal forms that they had  valid insurance, it was even arranged that insurance could be organised through the CTC, when the membership fee was paid.
Do you think that everyone on a club run has insurance…Bet they don’t. I believe it should be a mandatory requirement of club membership. Along with prompt payment of club fees.
The other “Big Issue” was Etiquette on the road, I know Norman Smith has written on the subject but I endorse his comment entirely. One of the first tasks I completed as a committee member was to formulate and introduce a code of conduct, for cycling on the road. It was clear concise and was an attempt to tidy up club runs and lessen the chance of accident or road rage from other road users. Common sense and practical,  We have a responsibility to our newer members to make them aware of what we expect of Wheelers on the road, I remember from my early days in the club, you were very soon made aware of any indiscretions or breaches of discipline, I can still hear Gordon Taylor’s and John Percival’s voices, ( I wake up in a cold sweat!)
The rules are there for a good reason….to keep you alive.
I can only heap praise on your committee, they work tirelessly for your club. They give their time and energy to promote the club and cycling in general. The officers are knowlegeable, energetic and committed, committed to ensure you have a club which is vibrant and one you can be proud of…….give them your support.
Due to personal reasons I will not be seeking re election as your Chairman. I have enjoyed my 6 years on the committee, and hope that I have left the Wheelers, stronger, safer, and a club to be proud of.