The world is mostly full of nonsense. Get straight to the good stuff using these handy shortcuts.

Bristol things

Nice city, Bristol. Lots of excellent stuff going on. Here’s some of it, in no particular order.

The Bristol Bike Project. Recycling bikes and providing them to disadvantaged folks since 2008. A truly lovely place to spend time, learn stuff, be inspired, be humbled, get greasy, drink tea, talk bikes, talk rubbish. Reliant on volunteers, so get yourself down there. RftS’ number one partners. They help us, we help them, everyone’s a winner. We share a few staff too.

Bristol Cycle Festival. Along with the Bike Project, the main inspiration for RftS. Annual volunteer-run celebration of Bristol’s unique cycling culture. ‘Our chains set us free.’

Boneshaker Magazine. The most beautiful bike mag in the world? It certainly helps that they don’t make you flick through 20 pages of adverts before you find some actual content. Made in Bristol but read around the globe, and rightly so. True heirs to the sadly-defunct Ride Journal.

Bristol Cycling. Working for Bristol and the surrounding area to be “alive with people on bicycles; where cycling is so easy everyone does it; and happier, healthier, greener and more civilised”. Can’t say fairer than that. They’ve produced this handy guide for cycling advocates (not necessarily ‘campaigners’), which is well worth a read.

Bristol City Council. Local authorities take a lot of stick, but ours has really helped us out, so fair play to that. We’re involved in the Cycle Forum (you could be too) as a means of improving communication between the Council and the city’s cycling community. Take a look at Better by Bike for information about cycling in Bristol and the West of England.

Lifecycle. Bristol-based charity helping people “build confidence to get the most out of bikes and encourage them to make bicycling part of their everyday lives by offering cycle training and maintenance services to individuals, schools and businesses”. Imagine if a disability made it difficult or impossible for your to ride a regular bike. These people would help you get out on two wheels. Legends.

Sustrans. Also Bristol-based, but active across the UK. Best known for creating and developing the National Cycle Network, but they do a lot else to promote cycling (and sustainable transport more generally).

Bristol Trails Group. Voluntary group of mountain bikers who look after the splendid trails right on our doorstep and liaise with the Council and other landowners about access, repairs and the like. Regular maintenance days and rides.

Wideopen Magazine. Well, edited in Bristol in any case. Online mag for those who like slithering around in mud on knobbly tyres, and reading about people riding beautiful dusty trails in places where they actually have dry weather.

Bikefest. Long-running and very fun mountain bike race at Ashton Court, just over the bridge from Bristol. Thoroughly recommended for seasoned whippets and keen beginners.

Trust Fund. The best band ever to come out of Bristol. Happy to argue about that any time. Would be bigger than god if there were any sense in this world.

Two White Cranes. Another guitar- (and bass-) toting titan of Bristol music. Pops up in many guises, all brilliant, but this was one of her solo things that we particularly love.

Bristol CX. Cyclo-cross: the best of all possible bike-riding worlds. We sponsor our local club, Bristol CX. Get involved!

WTTA hill climb series. Local hill climbs are amazing. We’ve sponsored the WTTA series. Proper grassroots goodness.

Bristol Bicycles. Designed and built by our good friends at Jake’s Bikes. Fantastically good value commuting bikes. We sell ‘em here as well.

Matt Jones. Our friend Matt Jones rides mountain bikes very quickly for infeasibly long periods of time. He’s an endurance racer, see? He’s European 24-hour Champion. That’s pretty amazing. We sponsor him too.

Van OD. If our bike trailer isn’t big enough, try Bristol’s on-demand van service. They aim to make it easier to live in Bristol without a car.

Non-Bristol things

It’s a big world.

Cyclestuff. There are lots of cycling blogs out there. This is a good one, written by a very nice man called Simon.

Audax UK. Ride your bike with a bunch of friends, usually through beautiful countryside, with part of the object being to eat a lot of cake on the way. Audax: if you’re not doing it you don’t know your courtesy flap from your Carradice.

The Bicycle Academy. Learn to build a frame (i.e. really learn, so that you could do it again) while providing bikes for people in Africa whose lives can be transformed by them. Genius.

Cycling UK (formerly Cyclists Touring Club). The UK’s biggest cycling charity and campaign group. Worth joining for the insurance alone, but they actually provide a lot more than that.

Global Cycling Network and Global Mountain Bike Network. They film their maintenance and tech videos in our workshop. We like the idea of people knowing how to look after their own bikes, so we encourage you to watch them.

Martha. Possibly the greatest band in the world, ever. Have played a few times at RftS. Also excellent humans.

Radiator Hospital. We’ve been lucky to have plenty of bands from outside the UK play at RftS. These lovely people shared a bill with Martha in November 2015. It’s difficult to imagine another day as fun as that.

Cafes. Rides are often improved by a cake stop. Here’s a list of cafes good for just that, all within 25 miles of Bristol. Thanks to Bristol Cycling Campaign‘s Mike Frost for putting this together.


Think something else should be on this list? Drop us a line via the contact page and tell us why.