“When I can’t cycle I miss it.”
David Foulkes, Clinical Nurse Specialist, Broadgreen Hospital
Where do you cycle from/to?
West Allerton Station to Broadgreen Hospital.
How long have you been doing this journey by bike?
21 years – ever since I had my kids. It’s all I’ve ever done really. If I had a choice to drive, cycle or run I would always chose cycling. Always. And then running. I would never chose to drive or anything else.
How long is your journey?
It’s about 4-5 miles, 20-30 minutes. If it’s a nice day I’ll take the long way round and go along the prom.
Why did you decide to cycle?
It keeps me fit. Without cycling I wouldn’t be as fit as I am now. It’s great for the environment – I want to make sure I’m reducing my carbon footprint on the world.
It’s also really convenient, you don’t have to wait on anything else that’s out of your control. You set off when you like and know when you’ll get to work. And there are lots of economic benefits too. The yearly fare you’re spending on the bus or train could be used to buy your first bike.
What are the best bits of your journey?
I use the Liverpool cycle path, which is the safest route and takes me directly to the hospital. I love cycling through Sefton or Calderstones Park. You get the fresh air in your face, smell the leaves, see all sorts of wildlife. I’ve seen rabbits, foxes, herons. You also see lots of the same people on the route so there’s a quick hello, chat to the dog walkers – I have a dog so I love chatting to people taking their dogs out for a walk.
Has anything interesting happened on your cycle?
I saw a bird of prey three times in the last few weeks… not sure what type. But you wouldn’t see that if you were on a bus.
When is your favourite time of year to cycle and why?
After Christmas usually, when the nights start to get lighter. I love cycling through the park when it’s frozen. I don’t care how drenched I get, I wouldn’t swap it for anything else.
Have you noticed any benefits to cycling?
It definitely helps me maintain my weight and keeps my blood pressure in check.
What would you say to anyone who’s thinking of commuting by bike to encourage them to get started?
It’s well worthwhile – for all the reasons I’ve said. There are organisations set up, local cycling clubs etc. to help people get started. I’ve seen all walks of life cycling so there’s no excuse!