May 2021

Cycling in the Pandemic: #SpokesComp

Whilst health and the NHS have rightly been everyone’s top concern, transport and travel have changed drastically during the pandemic. Our Spring competition showed just how valuable, how valued and how versatile is the humble bicycle when the unexpected happens and lives have the need or the opportunity to change.

Some of the main themes to emerge in the entries were…

  • Rediscovering the joy of cycling
  • Rediscovering the utility of cycling as a means of transport
  • Feeling safe and relaxed thanks to Spaces for People schemes
  • Helping other people – visiting, transporting, teaching
  • Discovering sights, sounds and places we’re normally too busy for
  • The delight of traffic-free routes and places – with children and without
  • How kids love to cycle – and love to widen their cycling experience
  • Learning new skills and starting new enterprises
  • Oh, and the excellence of Spokes Maps!


See the full set of prize-winner and runner-up entries in this 5.5MB pdf – anonymised except for the prizewinners.


1st prize – Ken Morrisonnew experiences; new lessons

Our world and my cycling experience has changed so much over the past year; I guess we’ll only be able to understand it fully when we look back.

  • The first days of Lockdown, eerily quiet
  • Mums out with wee kids on bikes. elderly friends getting old bikes out
  • Then Spaces for People – subject of so much misinformation
  • And a chance to explore – castles, standing stones, hill forts, carvings, churches … most on the excellent Spokes maps

2nd prize – Rosanna Rabaeijs – transporting food by cargobike & trailer

During lockdown I’ve used my trailer to do a weekly shop for a housebound neighbour

I’ve used the SHRUB coop cargobike to transport for food-sharing charities – it feels really positive

3rd prize – Mags Donaldson – rediscovering the joy of cycling

I’ve been stuck at home for a year … I have good friends who are cyclists and it rubbed off on me! I bought a 2nd-hand bike (cuteness being a strong factor)

I don’t ride to be cool, or elegant, or even for exercise – it’s for the sheer joy!

4th prize – Jane Herbstritt – Learning to ride during lockdown

In the peaceful desertion of Fort Kinnaird car park, the only moving vehicle was a bicycle going round in wobbly circles – my husband, age 55, had finally mastered riding a bike. It was our lockdown challenge!

I now have a whole lot of appreciation for any adult prepared to swallow their pride and teach themselves to cycle!

5th prize – Jain Sumeet – children & parents pandemic cycling (video entry)

The roads were really quiet, so it was really nice … I just love cycling!

I’m learning to cycle on my balance bike

I now cycle to work instead of the bus – it’s much easier and much more fun!


The top prizewinner gets to choose their prize from the list, second chooses second, and so on.


Many thanks to you if you entered, even if you didn’t win this time.  Thanks also to the organisers, the 4 Spokes Resources Group judges and to Andy Arthur our external judge.  Andy is a professional illustrator (who does the PoP Scotland graphics) and inspired by bicycles, bike culture, birds, nature, Edinburgh and Scotland.


  • Look through our full selection of entries carefully – do any inspire you to try the same?  Are there any you could recommend to friends, colleagues or family?
  • See the results of our many previous exciting, amusing and/or interesting competitions here.
  • If you’ve a great idea for a future competition, let us know!  A topic that is useful to other people and which lots of people are able to enter is what we need.
  • Please retweet our tweet about this article.

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