We’re Pedalling on COP26 in Glasgow!

Who’s up for a bit of an adventure to raise awareness of climate change and the role bikes could play in combatting it?

As you may know, Glasgow is hosting the UN Climate Conference (COP26) in November. We believe bikes are part of the solution to climate change – and we’re going to take that message to the powers that be by cycling there from Dumfries to take part in the Global Day of Action on November 6th, along with Pedal on Parliament and a whole host of other groups.

We’ve decided to join groups from around the country (and further afield) but organising our own Pedal on COP: a two day ride from Dumfries to Glasgow (setting off on Thursday 4th November) to join the Cycling/Sustainable Transport bloc for the march in Glasgow.

Pedal on COP banner

Here’s the schedule:

  • Thursday 4th November: Gather at Dock Park at 8:30am for a 9am departure. People may join us for the sendoff, or may come along for part of the ride if they don’t want to go the whole way
    • 1pm (approx): Lunch at Wanlockhead
    • 2pm (approx): Arrive Leadhills
    • 4pm (approx): Overnight stop in Abington. There is a campsite for the really hardy, or a Days Inn at the service station.
  • Friday 5th November: Assemble at 8:30 at Abington Services (we will meet the 7:30 X74 coach service from Dumfries, arriving at 8:34 in Abington, which takes bikes, if anyone wants to join us for the day).
    • 10 am (approx): Arrive Lesmahagow (again, we will meet the 8:45 X74 coach from Dumfries, arriving at Lesmahagow at 10:10).
    • 3pm (approx): Arrive Glasgow.
  • Saturday 6th November: Assemble at Kelvingrove Park for 12 noon for the march to Glasgow Green and a rally there.

There may be a gathering of other groups who have cycled in and cyclists from Glasgow that evening to celebrate on Friday evening.

This is not a ride to be undertaken lightly! Our route is about 95 miles and goes over the Mennock Pass, with over 1,500 feet of climbing. But we’ll be riding it over two days to give ourselves plenty of time to arrive in Glasgow in time for the big march on Saturday. As with all Cycling Dumfries rides, we’ll set a gentle pace (probably about 10mph) and always at the speed of chat. We should be able to keep to the hours of daylight, but days in November are short so you will need to have lights as a backup in case we get held up.

The route will pass through Wanlockhead – so there’s a fair bit of climbing

If you want to join us let us know by emailing cyclingdumfries@gmail.com or contacting us through social media. You’ll need a roadworthy bike, good waterproofs and winter weather gear, and you will be responsible for your own food and accommodation on the way and in Glasgow (although we might be able to help put you in touch with people in Glasgow who can put you up).

If you can’t make the ride, you can still join the march! Just get yourself to Glasgow on the Saturday to join the bloc assembling at Kelvingrove Park – sign up here.

We’ll have a ride planning, bike fettling, banner making and pizza eating night on Tuesday 2nd November (instead of our regular monthly meeting) to put the final touches on the plan – all welcome (you don’t have to be planning to do the ride). Details of exactly when and where to follow.

Famously, Kirkpatrick McMillan didn’t just invent the pedal cycle, he supposedly rode it to Glasgow. Let’s follow in his wheeltracks to show that his invention is still not just relevant but vital to tackle the problems of the modern day.

Kirkpatrick Macmillan statue with 'This Machine Fights Climate Change' slogan

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