FAQ

How can I join Bike Belles?

Just connect with us on Facebook, twitter, Instagram, by email or come along to one of our activities. There is there is no membership as such. You can dip in and out of social media and activities as suits you.

We provide a positive, respectful space where walkers and cyclists can get and share useful information, gain skills and confidence and connect with us, each other, the natural world and the wider, global walking cycling and nature movement.

How far do your Rides go?

Usually not more than one hour each way, a distance of 8 – 15 miles. We go at a steady pace with breaks and make sure that everyone can keep up. This makes these rides suitable for people of most ages and abilities.

Social ride

I’d like to start cycling in York, but am a bit nervous about cycling on the roads. Can you help?

Book on our Cake Confidence start cycling scheme with a four-week programme of free advice, bike loans, buddying and cycle training – guaranteed to get you more confident! Enquire by emailing yorkbikebelles@gmail,com

Also, we recommend the City of York Council’s Urban Skills training.

I’ve got an old bike I’d like to offer for recycling. Is there anywhere that recycles bikes in York?

Try Re Cycle Bikes on Walmgate.

I want to report/ complain about an obstruction or other problem on a walking or cycling route in York. What can I do?

You can report any road, pavement or walking cycling route problem to City of York Council online at https://www.york.gov.uk/homepage/22/report-problems-online. Any other issues with walking cycling routes or facilities, you can email the Council at walking.cycling@york.gov.uk and also report it to your local Councillor and the Executive Member for Transport, Cllr. D’Agorne. All current Councillor contact details here.

How can I find out if walking and cycling paths have been gritted during the colder months and/ or the riverside paths are flooded?

Some of the most popular walking and cycling paths are now gritted by a “baby gritter” over the winter at the same time as the road network, including the city centre riverside paths, Millennium and Scarborough Bridges, Foss Islands Path and the Greenway across the Knavesmire to York College.

There is now a very useful website that shows which riverside paths are flooded after heavy rains, and when they are clear. You can find this at http://nosearmy.com/isitflooded/. Thank you to Richard Lane for creating this excellent tool, for free!

We suggest you also follow the York cycling community on Twitter to keep up to date with the state of the cycling network @yorkbikebelles @yorkcycle @itravelyork and, of course, @yorkgritter.

How do I open a gate on a cycle path (for a trailer or wider bike)?

You can get hold of a key for the radar lock gates on cycle routes by visiting City of York Council reception desk at West Offices.  There is a form to fill out and a refundable deposit to pay, unless you are disabled. Or you can buy a radar key online – it’s the standard disabled toilet key.

I haven’t cycled for years. Can you help me get started?

Our Cake Confidence scheme is perfect for you. We can offer advice, tryouts, cycle confidence training and even a free bike loan for up to a month – all over cake at Cycle Heaven cafe! Email yorkbikebelles@gmail.com in the first instance.

CC advice

How do I find the best cycling routes around York?

There’s some great local maps and online planners available. Try the York Cycle Map or CycleStreets when planning specific journeys.

The Slow Tour of Yorkshire routes are easy cycling day trips from York, 2 go directly from York (to Naburn and Beningbrough Hall), and 3 others are at the end of a short train journey (Scarborough, Harrogate, Leeds). Detailed maps are on the links below:

York to Naburn

York to Beningbrough Hall

Scarborough to Hayburn Wyke

Harrogate to Ripley

Leeds to Saltaire

You can try our new Nature Time Routes here. There’s a selection of Easy Cycle Rides for Leisure in York here, and a map of the full Solar System Greenway route (Bishopthorpe to Riccall) here

Also, if you post on our Facebook page, our friendly online community may be able to help you find a route. We also may be able to match you with a bike buddy, a local experienced cyclist, who can give you advice and cycle your route with you. Email yorkbikebelles@gmail.com.

How about walking?

We run monthly walks as part of our Walking Book Group, and regular Nature Walks. And why not try our new Nature Time Routes here?

York Health Walks also has an extensive programme of led walks.

Finally, there’s a number of walking maps for York. You’ll find some on the following links:

York Civic Trust “Trust Trails”

City of York Council Leisure Maps

Fishergate Footprints

Acomb Ambles

South Bank History Walk, with audio trail

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