Last night could not have been more wonderful as over 400 revellers came out in force to support the save the Herne Hill Velodrome campaign.
The end of the afternoon professional track session made way for a rare opportunity to ride any type of bicycle on the track; baskets, brakes and all! It way great to see all sorts of people who had never visited the track before getting a taste of history. The BBC also came down to talk to Hillary Peachey, who was representing cyclists, local residents and other supporters in the campaign to save this iconic site.
Under the light of full moon the show kicked off with a short film by the Hackney Bicycle Film Society which focused on interviews by people who used the track on a regular basis and how it enriched their lives. We had 12 bicycle generators setup up, 4 of which were children’s bicycle to ensure that everyone could have a go.. and there was no shortage of riders or power for that matter as children dutifully queued behind each bicycle. The main feature, ‘Belleville Rendez-vous’ is one of the most charming movies I've had the pleasure of seeing the last couple of years and see see it powered by bicycles at the Velodrome was truly magical.
Around 65 people filled in a survey (of which over half had never been to the velodrome before). A Few comments (all from first time visitors):
'This is one of the most amazing events for building a community I have ever seen.' 'I have had a great time and would like to come back. Brilliant idea' 'It is wheely, wheely nice here' 'I think these events beautifully enhance society and culture.'
Thanks to everyone involved for making this an amazing night. And thanks to the Free Film Festival for organising the event. We’re hoping to be back at the Velodrome in September with another bicycle powered installment.