Reading Cycle Campaign was formed late 1982, the group was originally called Reading Cycling Action Group. Founding members were John Booth, Simon Watkins, Steve Thames and John Rigby.
We have the County Surveyor and Simon Watkins to thank for the Campaign’s take-off. The former launched his plan to complete the Inner Distribution Road and there were no obvious, signs of any provision for cyclists.
We all thought this was terrible, but it was Simon who argued that it was time to hit the streets. We gave notice of a demo to be held on 25 June 1983 with a ride around part of the proposed IDR and a symbolic push up the Station Road bus lane (made legally shared in 1987). People arrived in swarms and by the time we arrived in the town centre there were 100 cyclists.
The Campaign probably has one of the lowest subscription rates of all cycle campaigns and the rate was set low to encourage membership while (just) covering costs. From time to time we had some help: a cheese and wine party paid for 1996 newsletters and three bikes kindly donated by member Arthur Lewis gave us a firmer financial footing.
Membership in 1984 was 100. This grew steadily during the 1980s to its current strength of over 500.