Following a recruitment drive via affiliated clubs, British Cycling has ramped up its membership to 16 462. Significantly, half of the 1000 new members are under 18, "traditionally a relatively small segment of British Cycling's membership," said a statement from the Manchester-based governing body for cycle sport.

British Cycling adds 1000 members in a month

The recruitment drive, launched in late March, offered all of British Cycling’s thousand-plus affiliated clubs a minimum of ten free bronze memberships to recruit new members, with Go-Ride clubs and clubs which organise events qualifying for up to fifty free memberships. Each club secretary received a pack of marketing materials.

Fifty percent of the new members opted to upgrade from their free bronze memberships to paid-for silver or gold, taking advantage of the additional benefits provided, such as legal and insurance packages.

Claire Rollinson, British Cycling’s membership services manager said:

"The response of our clubs has been fantastic. What is also encouraging is the number of youth cyclists taking up membership, which points to the great work being carried out by our clubs, and the ever-expanding Go-Ride programme."

Competitors in a range of events have increased, with some being over-subscribed for the first time.

Race promoters Stuart Benstead, has noticed the effect:

"I was surprised by a big increase in entries for the youth races at Hillingdon Circuit, from the normal 25 to 42 in the first two weeks. Shane Benson, who runs the youth races for us, offered the opinion that the free memberships had encouraged more youngsters, and their parents, to try racing."

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