Vicky, outside Bicycle Boutique
Hello! What are you riding?
A Pashley Poppy - handbuilt in Stratford, weighing 18kg, with some fetching but quite useless Japanese cherry blossom and gingham panniers from RideLow. She is covered in stickers for Boneshaker Magazine and Copenhagen Cycle Chic and is called Maggie May. I love her so much I even had her name tattooed on my arm, which is increasingly a sartorial challenge when working with young people as I have to keep it covered up. I got her in 2009 on the bike to work scheme. She has cork handle bar grips, drum brakes and hub gears.
And where are are you going today?
The Spokes Royal Wedding Alley Cat which was an alternative celebration of Wills and Kate getting married and a chance to be silly on bikes around the town centre!Then went on Critical Mass and a street party in Hulme.
What's the best thing about cycling in Manchester?
The variety of cyclists - from hardcore mountainbikers through to hipster students on fixed gears. There aren't many other cities where there's such a range of people doing great things on two wheels - from bike dance groups to bike film nights...it's all going on.
What could be improved?
The infrastructure in Manchester is woeful and could be improved - in Trafford they've started taking away any cycle lanes that aren't at least a metre wide so that'll be most of them. This means I've lost count of the number of times my flatmate has nearly been killed by a taxi driver, there's always people parked in the cycle lanes and Oxford Road is a bit of a death trap. That said I'd rather be freewheeling with Maggie than sat on a bus.