News – Obree at East Coast Classic cycling festival


Former World champion Graeme Obree is set to officially launch a new seafront cycling hub and a new cycling festival at Great Yarmouth on Monday, May 26

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News – Obree at East Coast Classic cycling festival

The world record-breaker will be at the opening of the former North Drive Bowls Pavilion, converted as part of the successful GY Bike Project, which aims to promote cycling and bike maintenance.

The hub will be officially opened at 12pm. There will be a whole host of other cycling-related attractions at the hub on the bank holiday Monday, between 10am and 4pm.

Graeme will also tackle all three community rides which people can sign up to as part of the new East Coast Classic cycling festival. ActivatingCIC, a local social enterprise specialising in cycling activities, was able to convert the former bowls pavilion, owned by Great Yarmouth Borough Council, thanks to £36,833 secured from Norfolk County Council’s Community Construction Fund, plus a contribution of £36,967 from the borough council.

Seajacks UK Ltd, a Great Yarmouth-based offshore energy firm, also donated £20,000 towards the running costs for the first two years, and Pedal Revolution bike shop, in Baker Street, Gorleston-on-Sea, is supporting the project.

The hub will provide a fixed location for the successful GY Bike Project, launched last summer under the borough council’s Comeunity Budget programme and delivered by ActivatingCIC.

The core aims are to raise physical activity levels, while improving employment opportunities by providing people with an affordable and sustainable form of transport – and the maintenance skills.

The project has three main elements to run during the summer: a free weekly three-mile bike ride in the heart of Great Yarmouth, a free weekly open workshop where members of the community can learn bike maintenance skills, and a ‘Learn, Recycle, Ride’ course.

Over the four-week course, anyone can sign up to learn vital bike skills either for their own bike, or gain an old donated bike which they can learn to make roadworthy again. View the full programme at

The East Coast Classic, organised by ActivatingCIC, with event management support from the borough council, will involve three rides for people of all ages and abilities, taking in landmark sights along the east coast.

There is an Epic Ride of 110km and a Challenge Ride of 50km, both of which have a staggered start from 9am. There will also be a 5km Family Ride available all day.

All participants of the Epic and Challenge Rides will have the chance to ride through Somerleyton Hall, where they can stop for a coffee and a slice of cake. All rides will start and end at Britannia Plaza.

Tickets cost from £10 and are available online via where there is also further information about the routes. All profits raised will go to the GY Bike Project.

Lynsey Dunne, the co-ordinator of the GY Bike Project, said “It is a very exciting and innovative new project benefiting the wider and poorest parts of the community in the Great Yarmouth area.

“We want to make cycling accessible to absolutely everyone, and we have a great team of trained mechanics and coaches to help deliver a high quality service for those wanting to learn more about bike maintenance, and to those who wish to build confidence and new skills to ride a bike.”

Luke Rumbelow, of ActivatingCIC, said: “The East Coast Classic is for people who maybe want to try out a ride around the coast, experienced riders who want to push themselves.

“There will be lots of activities going on throughout the day on Marine Parade, from children’s balance bikes to a MTB circuit, and with Graeme Obree down as well, the day will be a bit of fresh air to Great Yarmouth.”

Marie Hartley, the borough council’s culture, sport and leisure manager, said: “The borough council is very excited about this new cycling hub, which represents a huge amount of work from the borough council, ActivatingCIC and the two local companies. It will get people more active and improve their employment opportunities at the same time.”


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