Otley’s cycling credentials, which have always been strong, were boosted to a whole new level last year with Lizzie Armitstead’s stunning Olympics silver medal.
That success was preceded by the first ever Otley Cycling Festival and has recently been followed by the wonderful news that the town is to feature in stage one of the Tour de France’s Grand Depart in 2014.
So the time to unveil an ambitious new cycling strategy, aimed at putting the sport/mode of transport at the very heart of the community, could scarcely be any better.
For now, like most strategies in their early stages, the Do You Ride? scheme’s goals sound slightly vague, though entirely laudable.
But if the Town Council and Otley Sportive, the organisation which led the initiative, and runs its own fun cycling races, can achieve even some of their headline objectives the venture will be entirely worthwhile.
We have heard much talk of Olympic ‘legacy projects’ following the huge popularity of London 2012.
With this strategy the town has a chance, if it follows through on creating a cycling friendly environment where the pastime is actively promoted and cyclists feel safe, of creating a fitting legacy for both the Games and the 2014 Tour de France’s visit to Wharfedale.