Our wom+n-led sessions where like minded individuals can come together to learn bicycle mechanics, fix their own bikes, and meet people at the Ride On workshop.
We use the term ‘wom+n’ to underline inclusivity. This is to be absolutely explicit that we include women of colour, trans women, femme/feminine-identifying genderqueer and non-binary folks and any other person who may feel discriminated against in areas of feminism. Our aim is to provide an inclusive space that’s full of enthusiasm and friendly encouragement for trying something new.
For us, the ‘+’ in wom+n recognises that not all women’s groups are fully inclusive. We hope it shows that we seek to be as inclusive as possible to offer a space free from the influences of sexism and other forms of discrimination or exclusion.
Pronounce it however you like!
These sessions are led by a small team of female mechanics and volunteers working at Ride On. We saw a gap in our community where plenty of wom+n we know cycle and own bikes, but many don’t have the confidence and knowledge to fix their bikes themselves or maintain them to keep them working smoothly and safely. Reflecting on this gap, we recognised that this may be partially due to the cis-male dominated environments of bike workshops, which can feel intimidating for others.
We wanted to introduce a space free of judgement and pressure where wom+n could come to learn the basics of bike mechanics to empower them to work on their own bikes and get them cycling more. These sessions are free from egos and arrogance, just the freedom to be yourself. We are respectful of everyone and there are definitely no silly questions. No experience necessary!
The workshops are led by a female mechanic at Ride On, and helped by a female volunteer, so there will be two people on hand to advise and teach. We encourage everyone to help everyone out, so feel free to share what you know and bring any knowledge you have already to the sessions.
All tools are provided in the workshop, but we encourage you to bring your own bike – it’s great to get to know yours better! There could be a rare occasion that we will not be able to work on it – in this instance, a substitute from the workshop can be used instead. If you are unable to bring your bike let us know when you register for a session and we can accommodate.
The workshop is here to allow you to gain confidence, meet like minded people and get stuck in! That being said, we understand such environments may be potentially intimidating for some. If this is the case feel free to get in touch and we would be happy to meet beforehand to settle you in.
When & What To Expect?
Tuesday evenings, 6pm – 8pm
The first hour will generally cover a main skill which will be outlined on the booking page. This skill will change every few weeks but bear in mind if you do one session to wait a few weeks before you book again as the session will largely be the same until the skill we are teaching changes. The second hour will be more relaxed and an opportunity to check over your own bikes and either practice the skill you’ve learnt further, or develop other skills.
There is no commitment to stay for the full 2 hours if you are unable to.
How Do I Book?
Spaces are limited to 6 people per session to allow enough space to work on bikes in the workshop. To book a session, load the Calendly calendar below or click the link here: https://calendly.com/dr-bike1/wom-n-s-workshop
Click on the date you want to book and see if there are spaces remaining. If so, book in and answer the questions so we know a little more about you.
Sessions are run on a donations basis as we do not want funds to be a barrier to anyone participating. We suggest £5 per session. As we are a charity any donations made go directly back into helping us put more bikes back on the road and helping more people to get into cycling! If you require any parts during the session to fix your own bike, these are charged per part at cost price.
If you wish to make a donation to the project, you can do so via the following link: paypal.com/gb/fundraiser/charity/69257
Contact [email protected] for more information.
Sign up to our newsletter mailing list if you would like to be kept in the loop about the topic of the sessions:
The Rickshaw Rides project was created to enable people who are unable to ride a bike the opportunity to experience the joys of cycling. We have been operating Rickshaw rides for more than 3 years.
The Rickshaw Rides project is run by a group of trained and dedicated Ride-On volunteers who provide people who might otherwise have little opportunity to leave their homes to get outside in the fresh air. The Rickshaw currently operates rides around the Exeter Quay and the canal bank. We have links with a number of local charities and care homes across the city.
The project was started back when one of our volunteers was inspired by a Danish project called, Cycling without Age. They brought the idea back to Exeter and started to raise money for a rickshaw, and were grateful to receive funding from Exeter City Councillors to make it possible.
We teamed up with Greenslades to offer regular rides for their residents, and due to the success of the project we looked to secure a second rickshaw.
We took delivery of our second rickshaw in 2019 which was partly funded by John Woolner’s epic ride – taking his Penny Farthing from John O Groats to Lands End and raising funds along the way. This was combined with a grant from the Barchester Foundation.
Our Rickshaw rides are increasingly popular, and we are always looking for more volunteers to help get involved and become ride leaders.
If you would like to help us with the Rickshaw Project, please contact [email protected]
THE ROB SLOWLEY FREE BIKE SCHEME
Our Free Bike Scheme started in 2020 to mark the charity putting its 3000th bicycle back into use. Ride On has grown rapidly since forming in 2011 with one of our volunteers, Rob Slowley, playing an important role in our development. Rob tragically died in March, so our team of trustees, staff and volunteers decided to name this scheme after him to recognise and remember his contribution and friendship.
Our free bicycle scheme is supported by Dakota Tucker, a young Mountain Bike rider from Devon, and Saddles & Paddles, a bike shop that also offers bikes, canoes and kayaks for hire on Exeter Quay.
Heather Baker, Saddles & Paddles owner, said: “we are thrilled to support Ride On with their bike give-away programme by donating a D-lock and helmet for the recipient of each bike. As an independent bike shop, we’re keen to do what we can to support great initiatives like this to enable more people to cycle.”
If you work for a charity or educational institution you can propose someone for a free bicycle. Complete the form below and send it to [email protected]
BIKE LIBRARY – COMING SOON!
To help make cycling more accessible to more people, Ride On wants to offer a Bike Library. The Bike Library offers long-term loans of adaptive bikes to provide an opportunity to test out adaptive bikes and trikes that could make cycling more inclusive.
‘It is a common myth that Disabled people don’t or can’t cycle. According to Transport for London (TfL), in London alone 12% of Disabled people cycle regularly or occasionally, compared to 17% of non-Disabled people’
Further research by Wheels for Wellbeing has shown that 75% of disabled cyclists find it easier than walking, which further highlights the potential of cycling as a mobility aid.
We will have 3 types of bikes to choose from – a small fleet that we hope to expand in the future as we assess our users needs.