How the club started:
Wheel Potential is a Community Interest Company (CIC No. 09978224) founded by three directors (including the late Gillian Corble) in early 2016 with the aim to provide an open-air cycling experience for less able adults in the Canterbury district, using a safe environment and adapted cycling machines.
The directors are able-bodied, long-term cyclists who were well aware of the joy of spinning along a country lane in the wind and the sun, and of the health and happiness benefits imparted by cycling. But what of those adults who, by virtue of learning or physical disabilities, are unable to ride safely unaccompanied, on-road, or on an orthodox bicycle? There was no facility for such people in Canterbury District, and so the idea to establish one was born.
Meet the team:
The current three directors are Beatrice Shire, Frank Guthrie and Mark Thomson. The fourth member of the team is Peter Clements, the company mechanic and trainer. All four are voluntary.
Frank, Peter, Gill and Beatrice with some of the machines
KUDOS Awards, 2017:
A short film showing how Wheel Potential works with two of our user groups (shortlisted for KUDOS Awards, 2017)
Where we are:
The machines are housed in two shipping containers in the municipal car park at Toddlers Cove in Canterbury. This is an ideal site for several reasons. The car park is rarely full; there are disabled parking bays next to the container and well-maintained disabled toilets on-site. Also, in the summer there is a snack bar.
Toddler’s Cove Car Park (in yellow), Whitehall Road, CT2 8BG
From Canterbury West station:
Use the following map to travel (by car or bike) from Canterbury West (train) station to the Toddler’s Cove car park. Note that you will have to turn into Linden Grove, from St. Dunstan’s street, and follow Whitehall Road under Rheims Way bridge (A2050):
The Toddler’s Cove site benefits hugely from being situated at the very start of the so-called “Great Stour Way”, part of the longer National Cycle Route 18. At this point, the route runs for three miles west closely adjacent to the River Stour to the riverside village of Chartham. It is a tailor-made walking and cycling route, wide enough to accommodate all such non-vehicular users. It is surfaced, off-road and flat as far as Chartham. Despite starting in the busy city of Canterbury, it immediately becomes a country route, with river on one side and fields on the other, populated by swans and Highland cattle respectively. Along the way are a few benches and tables where riders may stop for a rest and a picnic. An idyllic setting and as safe as it is possible to be. Once in Chartham, the rider can enjoy a drink in the excellent “Artichoke” pub (CT4 7JQ), which welcomes cyclists and especially those from Wheel Potential.
Toddler’s Cove (CT2 8BG) to Artichoke pub (CT4 7JQ)