Thursday, 16 May 2013

She Spoke to Margaret about bikes in Birmingham

Margaret on her Sun Runner Electric Tricycle

Tell me about your bike and where you got it.
My bike is a Sunrunner Electric Tricycle. I bought my bike last year. It came from a company in Long Eaton, who were good enough to bring the bike down to Birmingham for me to have a look.  They showed me how to use it and allowed me to have a long test ride of it. this made me remember just how nice it was to ride a bike.

Where has your bike taken you today?
My bike has taken me shopping and I had a lovely ride through my local park to get to the supermarket. Later I went along the River Rea and then back home.

Why do you cycle?
I am not sure that I chose to ride.  I had not ridden a bike since my teens.  I had been driving on and off for a long time.  Then earlier last year I decided  that I didn't want to drive anymore and I began to drive less and less. Then one day, the word "Tricycle" came into my head. I had no thoughts of getting a bike. So I began to do some  research  online and I found a company in Long Eaton and I got in-touch with them.  I sold my car and now I use my Tricycle for so many activities now like going to church, visiting friends, shopping, going to my art  and music classes.

What is your most regular commute in Birmingham & West Midlands?
I go to Rowheath and along the River Rea,Cannon Hill Park and Bournville quiet a lot.   I cycle all year round even in the rain and snow.

What is your favourite place to cycle in Birmingham & West Midlands?
This is +Woodbrooke Quaker Study Centre. It's a beautiful place with a lake, woodlands, and a walled garden.  It is a good place to meet up with friends.  It's also not too far from me.   Anyone can visit,  you need to report in at the front desk'.  I really recommend it, it beautiful.

When I am out on my bike I also:
I like to study nature.  Also I  have a good look around to see if anyone has thrown out anything useful.  This is because I am a supporter of Birmingham City Mission.  They are always in need of useful bits and pieces and small household items.  They fit on the back of my Trike.

What do you think Birmingham could do to improve the cycling infrastructure to make it more user friendly for all cyclists?
Most places that I go to are fairly accessible on my Trike. But what the council has done with the Rea Valley  removing all the tree roots is really great and this has mad my ride much smoother.    I do find that along traffic free routes through parks, that some cyclists go too fast and come too close to pedestrians and less confident riders.  I think all users need to be more considerate of less able riders and pedestrians.   Encouraging cyclists to use their bells more or to make others aware that they are approaching.  I prefer to say hello or sing so that people know that I am approaching.

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