This Saturday, 27th July 2013 saw the first ever Newcastle Gateshead Sky Ride. The Sky Ride is an organised free cycling events where you get a chance to ride around your local area on a traffic free route. The Newcastle Gateshead Sky Ride was a 10 km cycling route around the Quayside area. It gives people of all ages a chance to take part in cycling, with some gorgeous views of the Tyne river and the famous bridges crossing it. My son and I went down to see what was going on. I was acting as an official tweeter, if you follow me on twitter you may have seen some of my photos.
As we entered the Quayside we could see some cyclists were already on the route. There was a band with some drums playing music to encourage them on their way, which seemed to work well. The Tyne Bridge loomed over head and the skies were blue.
Just around the corner Halfords were on standby, ready to help anyone who had problems with their bikes. There were also lovely Jaffa people handing out oranges and ponchos in case it rained. There was no need for the ponchos but I have put them in my bag for emergencies.
Travelling up towards the Millennium Bridge there were all sorts of stalls to do with cycling. The people were very helpful and willing to chat. There was a buzz in the air and it was great to be able to walk along without worrying about traffic.
As the day went on more riders appeared. It got very busy and apparently nearly 8000 people attending though out the day.
Part of the route involved cycling over the Swing Bridge, which as the name suggests, is a bridge that is powered by hydraulics and swings open to let any ships though. It must have been great to cycle over it. You can see the High Level Bridge in the background which is a road and railway bridge.
We made our way along the quayside and arrived at the Cycle Hub just after 11am. Sir Chris Hoy was taking part in a question and answer session with Edith Bowman. You can just see him exiting the hub in the blue t-shirt.
The question and answer session was fascinating and inspired my son to get out on his bike and ride more. The atmosphere was fantastic and there was plenty going on during the day. We really enjoyed our visit and hope that the Sky Ride returns next year. You can find out if there is a Sky Ride in your area if you visit the Sky Ride website.
Disclosure: I was acting as official tweeter for the SkyRide and was sent some things as a thanks. I was not asked to write a blog post but thought it was interesting.