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AGM Chairman's report

Tue 23rd January

As the Royal Leamington Spa Cycling Club grows from strength to strength, it is with great pride that I reflect on what our club members have achieved again this year. As our numbers continue to swell, we find ourselves with ever more opportunities to take advantage of due to our open, sociable, inclusive supportive 'community' of riders.

Our club is not solely geared towards competition and training goals, as many other cycling clubs are. Our aim is to simply provide a sociable environment in which like-minded cyclists can come together and enjoy whichever aspect of the sport they love. The RLSCC mission statement that this year’s Committee adopted is, “To encourage the development of a welcoming and supportive community of cyclists, centred around a club which has the framework to enable new and experienced cyclists of all ages to enjoy safely exploring a broad range of cycling disciplines from social to competitive level.”  When I started to go through the list of events and activities that we have organised, supported and attended through the year, I think we have certainly achieved this.

This year we have continued to strengthen the bond between RLSCC and British Cycling.  The attention and support we are receiving from British Cycling is a direct result of the number of members that we have, the number of those members who are also members of British Cycling, the Go Ride coaching we do, the events that we host, and the races that we organise. It is worth mentioning also that RLSCC Fundraising Officer Andy Robson continues as the Regional Secretary for the West Midlands branch of British Cycling, which in itself provides us with an invaluable insight into the opportunities available to us.  Another significant development has been the move to using the British Cycling management tool to organise our club membership.

We were also very proud to be able to use club funds to provide free of charge first aid training to those club members who expressed an interest. This is a simple, yet tangible benefit for everyone that rides with the club.

The things we do....

 Most clubs concentrate upon or represent a very narrow aspect of cycling sport. RLSCC is different. We represent an extremely broad spectrum of disciplines across our sport, and we do it in a way which is commendably open and welcoming. This is entirely due to our family of members that all hold our core values of inclusiveness, opportunity and support.  Our motto of “Come one, come all” stands as strong today as it did on day one.

Below is a list of just a few of the activities undertaken by club members in 2017.  I will definitely have missed some things out, so I apologise in advance for any omissions:

  • In January, a team of 8 RLSCC members beat 15 local clubs to win a charity 'Wattathon' - which is who can pedal the furthest in a hour as a team
  • The Rawlinson Bracket was well attended once more by the RLSCC ranks with many of us volunteering our time to help out with the organisation

  • A group of RLSCC Peddlamaniacs took park in the Midlands XC racing at Hancurch Woods in March and throughout the year many of our members either took part in or helped organise a number of rounds

  • The same weekend as Midlands XC saw RLSCC providing cycle coaching and advice at the Leamington Spa Kids Run Free Event

  • In April, Iain McLaughlin represented Great Britain at the European Duathlon Championships

  • In May two members took part in the 40th Annual 5 Boro Bike Ride in New York

  • RLSCC helped marshal and generally supported the Women’s Tour of Britain in June

  • RLSCC provided advice and bike maintenance at June’s 37th Annual Napton Charity Bike Ride, with our members, young and old then going on to ride the 20 and 45 mile courses

  • Also in June, a substantial group of RLSCC riders rode The Tour of Cambridgeshire, and most finished top 20% to qualify to represent Britain at the Amateur world gran fondo championships in Alibi, France. Jen Doyle and Steve Dunton made the trip and went and raced over there in GB kit

  • August saw dozens of RLSCC members camping in our annual Summer Bike Fest at Fir Tree Farm. Fun and frolics on bikes ensued!

  • A plucky crew of us took part in the “Ard Rock” MTB Natural Enduro in August in Swaledale, Yorkshire

  • A number of RLSCC Peddlamaniacs rode at the pop-up velodrome at the HSBC Coventry City Ride in September, with other members riding with the public, or helping marshal

  • RLSCC Co-hosted the TT season events with Rugby Velo again, which only happens as a result of the support and organisation of many RLSCC members

  • A number of RLSCC-ers took part in the inaugural Velo Birmingham 100 mile closed road sportive in September

  • We had teams and individuals entered in the 2017 Ride London event again this year

  • Gemma Lynn rode 969 miles from Land's End to John O' Groats, raising £2,000 for the Multiple Sclerosis Society

It is the support of each other that make our club great, giving each other the motivation and the opportunities that we may not find on our own. By continuing to grow and now having in excess of 250 members within the club, it means that more than ever we need a dedicated and enthusiastic committee to bind and supports us. Without the support and dedication of this small group of individuals, the club could not function, and we thank you all for your passionate support of the club. 

I also wish to thank the numerous volunteers and regular ride organisers without whose help events such as the Time Trials, Midlands XC, Peddlamaniacs, Rollers training and all the regular club rides could not take place. We have more regular club rides per week than ever before, but even so, if any members feel there is a ride they would like to start, then feel free to get on and do it. If it is popular, it won’t be long before it becomes adopted as a regular club ride and away you go!  All our rides have grown from a small group of individuals simply organising themselves into a regular ride – it just needs that initial spark.....

Finally, I must thank you all, the members. I regularly feel humbled by the simple acts of kindness, support, encouragement and enthusiasm that I regularly see being dispensed between our members, young or old, newbie or veteran. This is who we are as a club, and it is with heartfelt gratitude that I thank you all for perpetuating the ethos of our club.

Dave Newton

RLSCC Chairman: 2011 - 2017

British Cycling Level 2 MTB Ride Leader

British Cycling Level 2 Cycling Coach

 

 

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