Group Riding & Guidelines

last updated : October 2022

Shipston Cycling Club (also called Shipston Cycling, Shipston CC or SCC ) organises group rides every Sunday (weather permitting), meeting at the Bridge car park in Shipston on Stour. There are also regular training rides on Tuesday evenings and some Saturdays, plus a women’s ride on Mondays and social rides on Thursdays in the summer months. The Tuesday evening rides are very weather sensitive especially when the evenings are getting dark as safety is paramount at all times but more regular during the lighter months of the year.
All rides are covered by our generic risk assessment which is available on request.

By participating on a club ride you agree:

Group safety

  • That Shipston CC, its officials and ride leaders are not responsible for your safety and welfare and that you join at your own risk and liability and assume full responsibility for your own safety in relation to other road users and riders.
  • Understand that all applicable rules for participation must be followed and that sole responsibility for your personal safety remains with you, including your physical and emotional preparation and fitness to participate in the ride.
  • That you are aware that the rides are held on open public roads and the organisers cannot be held responsible for actions, accidents or incidents caused by other road users.
  • To give a full release and waiver of liability and all claims that you have, or may have in the future, against Shipston CC and its officials from all liability for any loss, damage, injury or expense that you may suffer as a result of your participation in any part or parts of a ride or your presence, due to any cause whatsoever including any form of negligence.
  •  It is your responsibility to ensure you are physically and mentally fit to take part and if you suffer from any medical condition or illness that may affect your fitness or ability to take part in the ride it is your personal choice to take part and Shipston CC accept no liability for exacerbating your condition or any ill effects you may suffer during or after the ride.
  • To notify the ride leader if you are unable to maintain the advertised group pace.
  • To notify a ride leader if you want to remove yourself from participating in the group ride for any reason during the ride e.g. you feel unable or unfit to safely continue or you do not want to maintain the ride’s advertised pace.

Road safety

  • Follow the Highway Code at all times – it applies to ALL road-users.
  • Follow the ride leader’s directions regarding safe, group riding behaviour.
  • Cycle a maximum of two abreast when conditions permit.
  • Do not ‘half wheel’ when riding two abreast and ride directly behind the rider in front of you. 
  • Be prepared on small or busy roads to ride in single file; the inside riders to make space for outside riders to pull into the side.
  • Cover your brakes when appropriate and always when in close formation.
  • When on the front, keep pedalling, this is particularly important going downhill.  If you freewheel everyone behind may have to brake.
  • If you are on the front, remember that people are following your calls. Stop at T junctions and only pull out when it is safe for the whole group to make the move.

Verbal calls and hand signals – there’s a full guide here.

  • Point out hazards in the road by either calling or using hand signals, preferably both.
  • If road is narrow call “Car back” if you’re riding at the back of the group and there are vehicles behind you. 
  • If road is narrow call “Car front” if there’s a vehicle approaching from the front of the group.
  • Never brake suddenly in the group, but as gently and smoothly as you safely can, calling out “Slowing” or “Stopping.”
  • If you decide to pull out on a roundabout or junction, you need to call “Clear” or “Wait” – to warn the group of hazard.
  • Point out with hand signals and calls, all potholes, manhole covers and other dangers in the road that could cause a puncture or an accident.
  • If you are at the back of the group and you, or someone else is being dropped, call to the riders in front, typically using “ease up” or “slow a little” to indicate that the pace is too high. The group should then communicate this up to the front.
  • When asked to ‘ease up’ or ‘slow a little’ do not brake suddenly. Gently ease your pace by pedalling less hard or freewheeling for a moment.
  • Slow right down when passing horses, and pass them as wide as it is safe to do so in single file. Always talk to the horse riders as you approach and during passing them.  If the horses seem nervous, stop until the rider has the horse under control and signals you should pass.