Whenever you go out around Dorset there are noticeably more people out on a bike. There are lots of country lanes which are reasonably quiet, so there are plenty of good routes.
You’ve got the Purbecks, the New Forest and North Dorset, which are great places to ride. There’s a good perimeter all around. The Purbecks are reasonably hilly — there are a few hills that you can test yourself on and it’s easy to get to. It’s lovely countryside with gorgeous scenery.
There’s a good relationship with the local councils who are keen on promoting all forms of cycling: social, commuting and competitive. Bournemouth shut down its centre in the summer to host some crit races. They’re hoping to do the same again this year.
The three local clubs, Bournemouth Arrow, Bournemouth Jubilee Wheelers and Poole Wheelers, all have regular rides on the road, time trials and the track. The Slades Farm Olympic-sized outdoor track has been very popular since opening two years ago.
“Slades Farm Olympic-sized outdoor track has been very popular”
Each town in the region has a wide range of bike shops that offer good service and also have their own rides. Ride in Poole, and Primera in Bournemouth, are the big ones, and there are a selection in Ringwood, Wimborne and Blandford.
There’s not really a hub where everyone meets because there is so much variety in where people go. People hang out in Burley when doing a New Forest out and back. The Gorge Cafe in Blandford, and cafes in Shaftesbury are popular as well.