by Stephen White
Following a month of public voting and local campaigning, Surrey Wheels For All has been announced as the winner of Decathlon’s UK Cycling Club of the Year competition.
The cycling charity scoops a £500 prize from Decathlon for its response to the sporting giants appeal for cycling clubs across Britain to nominate themselves to be considered for the coveted title and £500 of Decathlon vouchers for new equipment.
The winning club was decided via a public vote, which sparked fierce online campaigning as over 200 clubs fought to claim the 2,500 votes from cycling enthusiasts nationwide.
Surrey Wheels For All largely comprises individuals with disabilities, with the collective aim to provide support and cycling equipment as extensively as possible to maximise the reach of cycling’s liberating spirit, regardless of individuals’ situations.
In the final vote, the club ended with a 21 per cent advantage over its nearest rivals, with its online campaign benefiting from the support of Olympic gold medallist and Paralympic cyclist, Joanna Rowsell MBE. The English Federation of Disability Sport and the local Surrey MP.
In response to the announcement, Surrey Wheels For All co-ordinator, Matthew Wings, said: “Surrey Wheels For All is a relatively new club set up by the national cycling charity, Cycling Projects. We have gained some great support from parents, carers, volunteers and partners, who just long to see their child enjoy an activity that many people can often take for granted. We are very proud to have been chosen as the Decathlon Cycling Club of the Year & will certainly celebrate in style!"
Peter Lazarus, Cycles Market Manager at Decathlon, added: “We are delighted to announce Surrey Wheels For All as the winners of the 2015 Cycling Club of the Year. They go to great lengths to ensure that people with disabilities have the opportunity to experience the joys of cycling. This competition has also highlighted the number of amazing cycling clubs that operate across the country, all of which provide a platform for more people to enjoy the benefits of cycling."