In the Media

St James Bike Project

St James Bike Project

The Live and Move Local Active Lives survey shows us that whilst young people in Exeter (those aged 16-34) are now more active than they were pre-Covid, the numbers of people cycling has decreased since this time. Helping residents to use active travel routes to get around the city is therefore important to us, and much of this starts with helping young people in Exeter to maintain their bikes, and to use them confidently.

In January 2022, St James School in Exeter introduced an enrichment programme, offering all pupils in the school the chance to try new activities that do not form part of the traditional curriculum. Live and Move is delighted to have supported the bike maintenance elective. The 12-week course includes basic tasks such as puncture repairs and general safety checks and moves on to more technical issues such as brake cable replacements.

Live and Move supports this exciting project by funding a member of staff from local cycling charity Ride On, together with work stands, tools and high vis vests.

Our ongoing evaluation work told us that the project was popular, indeed it is often over-subscribed, and that some past participants had begun to cycle to school and around the city because of attending the programme. A case study conducted by our evaluation partner SERIO about the project also told us that it was a real highlight of the week for those taking part, and that it had a huge impact on those attending feeling empowered and more confident. Students had even fixed four bikes that belonged to teachers, enabling them to also start cycling to and from the school.

But it wasn’t enough to just receive an evaluation report about this ongoing project; we wanted to go along and see for ourselves.

We visited the school just before the Christmas holidays started. It was the final session of that 12-week block, and the pupils were working hard to get their bike maintenance projects finished before the end of term.

The atmosphere in the classroom was one of peace and calm – not necessarily what one might expect just before the Christmas holidays! Students were fully engaged in their work but were happy to chat about what they were individually working on.

Assistant Headteacher Steve Brown, says that bike maintenance has been a popular enrichment session since starting in 2022.

He added: “Working with students in this way each Wednesday has been a real highlight to our working week. We get to know them on a different level, as we work together to solve problems. It’s been wonderful to see so many pupils, not necessarily those you might expect, taking part in something like this, not only enjoying the course but really excelling at it.”

Live and Move is currently working with staff at the school to enabling this course to continue. We look forward to providing further updates soon.

Thank you so much everybody involved in the bike project at St James School – we look forward to seeing you whizzing around the cycle paths of Exeter soon!

Exeter Living Awards

Exeter Living Awards

We are extremely excited and very proud to announce that Live and Move have been shortlisted for an Exeter Living Award.

We entered the Civic Award category for our Inclusive Communities project, in which we work alongside Inclusive Exeter. We’ve always believed that physical activity can be a wonderful way to connect people from differing background and communities, and the Inclusive Communities project proves this time and time again.

Take the badminton group for example. This weekly gathering in Wonford attracts about 25 people who represent up to 16 different nationalities. It includes grandparents, children, students, and everybody in between. Or our women’s yoga session which meets weekly in Exeter. Again, attracting women from a multitude of backgrounds and faiths, it’s a fantastic opportunity to connect and feel great. From Zumba to volleyball, walks to football, Inclusive Communities has it all.

The award ceremony takes place in March and we know that we’re up against some really stiff competition. It says a lot about the amount of brilliant work that takes place right here in Exeter.

Mahsin Mahbub who is the physical activity coordinator for Inclusive Exeter says that she’s really proud that the work with Live and Move has been recognised in this way.

She added: “Far too many people in our communities feel isolated and are lacking community support. Physical activity is a wonderful way of bringing people and communities together, and each week we see people from lots of different nationalities playing sport, having fun, and becoming friends. We are proud to see our work recognised in this way.”

Watch this space to find out how we get on in the Exeter Living award ceremony which takes place on 7 March.

Ride On Cycling receives 6000th bike

Ride On Cycling receives 6000th bike

Exeter-based charity ‘Ride On Cycling for All’, is delighted to be gifted a Voodoo Mountain bike making it the 6000th bike donated since the charity was formed.

Located on Exeter Quay, ‘Ride On’ was established in 2011 by bike ability instructor, Martyn Laxton.

Working at a school in Teignmouth at the time he was concerned that many of the pupils either didn’t have bikes, or they were of very poor quality. Martyn persuaded some friends to donate bikes and to help do them up and it proved so successful that he felt it would be a great idea for a social enterprise. Starting the charity in his garden shed, he quickly moved into a lock-up provided by Teignmouth Town Council, and in 2014 the charity relocated to its current workshop at Haven Banks.

The kind benefactor of the 6000th bike was David Greensmith, former Commercial Manager of Exeter City Council who sadly suffered a stroke in October 2022 and retired through ill health. A keen motorcyclist David was the founder of the World’s first global motorbike ride in memory of those lost through the Pandemic raising thousands for COVAX in 2021.

David explains: “I’ve been riding motorcycles since I was 17 and following my stroke was devastated when I had to give up my beloved motorbike which was a limited-edition Café Racer. My mountain bike has been sitting unused in a neighbour’s garage for the last year because I no longer have the strength in my left arm to ride it safely so I thought it was time to donate it to someone who would benefit, and I was delighted to hand it over to Will Page who heads up this wonderful local charity.”

Will Page explains: “Volunteers range from younger people to those who are retired and want to offer their skills to give back to the community. They are crucial because if we were looking to refurbish all the bikes ourselves, we couldn’t afford the labour costs – so they are a major part of our success. We also work with young people on a programme called ‘Schools in Exeter’, supported by Exeter City Council through their Live & Move project. My background is teaching so I am passionate about education and a firm believer that people work in different ways. We have a cargo bike and mobile workshop helping young people who are struggling in main-school education to spend time with our mechanics who help and guide them on fixing their bikes and it’s such a joy to see their eyes light up.”

Many bikes around Exeter are found abandoned and these get sent to the Charity’s workshop where they have a band of c.30 volunteers and four professional mechanics. All the bikes get fully serviced and the charity then sells them on with a full warranty and new cables. The ones that can’t be saved are stripped back for parts and sometimes a bike may be made up of up to four different bicycles. Once a week the charity runs a scheme called ‘Bring your own bike’, where people come into the workshop and can use all the tools and have access to the mechanics and their extensive knowledge and expertise whilst working in a safe environment.

Will Page explains: “Volunteers range from younger people to those who are retired and want to offer their skills to give back to the community. They are crucial for us because if we were looking to refurbish all the bikes ourselves, we couldn’t afford the labour costs – so they are a major part of our success. My background is teaching and passionate about education and a firm believer that people work in different ways, so we also work with young people on a programme called ‘Schools in Exeter’, supported by Exeter

City Council through their Live & Move project. We have a cargo bike and mobile workshop helping young people who are struggling in main school education to spend time with our mechanics who help and guide them on fixing their own bikes and it’s such a joy to see their eyes light up.”

He concludes: “People understand that we care as a charity and that the newly renovated bikes mean they are affordable to a wider audience. People buy bikes as their main way of transport to get around the city, particularly college and university students, as well as people riding to work. This means we are helping to reduce the number of car journeys being made around Exeter and our vision is for a cleaner, healthier, and active, Exeter.”

Cranbrook Christmas Cracker

Cranbrook Christmas Cracker

Cranbrook will look particularly festive next weekend, as a host of Santas take to the country park to participate in the town’s Christmas Cracker fun run.

The event will take place on Saturday 2 December and organisers are hoping for fine weather as runners dressed as Santa take to the track.

The family fun run and 5km event is organised by Cranbrook Running Club and Move More Cranbrook, the organisation which aims to support people to lead more active lives in the town.

Matt Rowett, chair of Cranbrook Running Club and the Move More Cranbrook steering group, said that this event is for runners and non-runners alike, and that it has the overall aim of helping families in Cranbrook to be active whilst having some festive fun in the process.

He added: “The emphasis here is on the word fun. The family fun run is non-competitive and all participants will be rewarded with a medal and a hot chocolate, regardless of their speed or level of fitness.

“For the 5km we’re hoping to see lots of local participants, from those who are used to a bit of running, or our loyal parkrun participants to anyone who fancies a challenge.  We may even some graduates of a recent Couch to 5km programme that has taken place recently. We can’t wait to see everybody dressed up and taking part.”

James Bogue, from the Move More Cranbrook steering group, said that this event sums up the aspiration of a healthy and active Cranbrook.

He said: “Encouraging people to move more isn’t enough – we all know what we should or could be doing to lead more active lives. In Cranbrook, we’re going a step further and putting on an entire programme of events that the whole family can take part in. It kicks off a series of events which will take place in Cranbrook across the next year.”

Places are still available for Saturday’s Santa Fun Run and 5km race, and can be purchased at: https://race-nation.co.uk/register/cranbrook-running-club/cranbrook-christmas-cracker More information about Move More Cranbrook can be found at: liveandmove.co.uk/Cranbrook

EXETER DAILY : Move More Cranbrook grants available now

Reassurance, support and positivity are at the core of the free Wellbeing Workout sessions run by a life coach for residents in Cranbrook…

Read it on the Exeter Daily website here – https://www.theexeterdaily.co.uk/news/local-news/move-more-cranbrook-grants-available-now

EXETER LIVING: Walk on the Wild Side

Work ‘away days’ don’t have to be an excruciating experience…

Read the full article here: page 49 – https://issuu.com/mediaclash/docs/el302_final

Exeter badminton sessions featured on international TV

More than 120 people attended a launch event for the sessions at Wonford Sports Centre a few weeks ago and now the popularity has caught the eye of NTV, a national TV Channel in Bangladesh.

Read more here on the Exeter.Gov website https://news.exeter.gov.uk/popular-exeter-badminton-sessions-featured-on-international-tv/