What is CUK now?

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honesty
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What is CUK now?

Postby honesty » 7 Apr 2016, 2:54pm

I think that adequately describes most peoples problem with the current re-brand. It's not the touring club you joined, so what is it? I am having difficulties seeing where it thinks to position itself in the current charities/organisations. There seems to be an existing group for most areas already.
What to race, and wear magic hats. British Cycling. Who also do a good sideline of Chris Boardman and infrastructure arguments for normos.
Want to ride longish dayish rides, with cake, and maybe getting lost because of poor map reading. Sounds like an Audax. There is a group literally named after this type of ride for you.
Regional/national infrastructure and space for cycling is covered by a miriad of groups like LCC, GMCC, all under the banner Cyclenation.
Want to do touring cycling, well theres the CTC... oh hold on.

I understand the logic of the re-brand. The drunk cyclist looked rubbish, the website was old. Touring cycling was shrinking from the halcyon days of old as people have less time to invest in these sorts of thing (I am making this up as I have no stats to back that assertion!), so "something needs to be done" and having spoken to none cyclists the new brand is more open, welcoming and friendly to them. But I just don't get where they are positioning themselves now. It seems to be setting themselves up against others with no benefit. Ask a news station to get someone to talk about normal cycling and they are much more likely to get Chris Boardman, or Carlton Reid, or even that chap from the Guardian than some face from C.UK

So what is the plan?

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monxton
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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby monxton » 7 Apr 2016, 3:35pm

honesty wrote:that chap from the Guardian

Helen Pidd?

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby PaulB » 7 Apr 2016, 10:02pm

You have posed a very good question regarding the artist formerly known as Cyclists' Touring Club. I was a member for over 20 years but did not renew when the club stopped being a club and became a charity. An increase in subs also made me look at what I was getting from the club. I did not rate the magazine (in the latter years) at all and generally put it in the recycling bag the day it arrived. My life style prevented me from joining any local CTC group and I didn't know of one anyway. My reason for joining was to support an organisation that was part of a lifestyle I enjoyed. Although I've never taken off on extended tours my cycling has always been for leisure - day rides mostly - and I wanted to be part of a like minded group. My main contact with the CTC has been this forum which I visit every day. It's worth mentioning that when my membership lapsed no-one contacted me to remind me or to ask why I had left.

Change is something that happens all the time and I understand that organisations cannot stand still. However, when the club you joined stops being a club and the emphasis and ethos changes, there comes a point when a parting of the ways is inevitable. As has been mentioned on other threads, the way this whole saga has been handled and pushed through leaves some of us feeling alienated. Even though I am no longer a member I feel very betrayed by the "powers that be" who obviously have pseudo political agendas and are using a once fine club to further their own ambitions. I no longer know what the organisation is for.

I am a member/active supporter of a Christian charity and knew, before I joined, what that would mean. All members pay an annual membership fee and also pay extra donations throughout the year. We give up a lot of spare time to make the charity work. I don't mind this because I believe in what the charity does and knew what I was signing up for. There are no member benefits other than knowing we are helping people. That organisation is undergoing some big changes to comply with EU legislation but the purpose of the charity will remain the same. What has happened to the Cyclists' Touring Club has been a total demolition job.

I am now a member of British Cycling. I've never raced but do follow the continental road racing closely, have a collection of race DVDs and have been to the Tour de France twice. If my subs help British cyclists further their sporting careers and increase cycling's profile in this country, then I'm fine with that. Let's face it, Bradley Wiggins and company have done more to put cycling on the UK map than this organisation. In return I get the insurance and occasional special offers/discounts etc at a cheaper rate than being a supporter of the former Cyclists' Touring Club.

It is easy to criticise and be negative on a forum like this but when something you believed in has been hi-jacked and changed out of all recognition then I don't blame anyone for feeling miss-led and let down.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby PH » 7 Apr 2016, 11:05pm

honesty wrote:Touring cycling was shrinking from the halcyon days of old as people have less time to invest in these sorts of thing (I am making this up as I have no stats to back that assertion!),

According to CJs analysis of the surveys over the years, touring is as popular as it's always been, with 75 - 80% of the membership.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby pwa » 8 Apr 2016, 8:55am

When all the dust has settled I may come to support some of what Cycling UK does. I may even begin to like the organisation, without wishing to be a member. A bit like I approve of a lot of what Amnesty and Liberty do. I just regret that Cycling UK replaced something I valued even more.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby honesty » 8 Apr 2016, 9:05am

I think of myself as a newbie still to the CTC. I had never heard of it before 2011 when I stumbled across the forum whilst getting back into cycling. It was partly from advise I read on here that meant I bought a touring bike not a road bike (to me at the time they were all still racers). I joined last year to get the magazine as I didnt need the other benefits. I also liked the idea of supporting an organisation that meshes with my views about cycling. I've always had visions of doing weeks of touring. When I was younger, it was dreaming of hiking the coast to coast instead of concentrating on my Mech Eng lectures at uni (as my parents were walkers I dont think any of us ever even thought about using a bike to do stuff. Saying that I did doodle a recumbent trike to cycle to Italy on instead of doing A level Physics...) Recently its day dreaming of cycling the LLC. I have no issue with supporting C.UK going forward, though I'm coming more round to the idea that joining A.UK may be a better use of my money as it seem to be more along the lines of the rides I do regularly rather than once or twice a year. Saying all that I think the idea of lobbying for better infrastructure is a good one, I just dont see how C.UK thinks it will fit itself into the current map of already crowded charities and groups doing just that. What is it's USP?

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby pwa » 8 Apr 2016, 9:33am

honesty wrote:I think of myself as a newbie still to the CTC. I had never heard of it before 2011 when I stumbled across the forum whilst getting back into cycling. It was partly from advise I read on here that meant I bought a touring bike not a road bike (to me at the time they were all still racers). I joined last year to get the magazine as I didnt need the other benefits. I also liked the idea of supporting an organisation that meshes with my views about cycling. I've always had visions of doing weeks of touring. When I was younger, it was dreaming of hiking the coast to coast instead of concentrating on my Mech Eng lectures at uni (as my parents were walkers I dont think any of us ever even thought about using a bike to do stuff. Saying that I did doodle a recumbent trike to cycle to Italy on instead of doing A level Physics...) Recently its day dreaming of cycling the LLC. I have no issue with supporting C.UK going forward, though I'm coming more round to the idea that joining A.UK may be a better use of my money as it seem to be more along the lines of the rides I do regularly rather than once or twice a year. Saying all that I think the idea of lobbying for better infrastructure is a good one, I just dont see how C.UK thinks it will fit itself into the current map of already crowded charities and groups doing just that. What is it's USP?


AUK (Audax UK) has many members who share your view of cycling, and it is still run by ordinary members who would rather be sat on their Brooks saddles than at a desk. And many also have a passion for touring. It feels like a club, a bunch of friends.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby Karen Sutton » 8 Apr 2016, 11:11pm

The Tandem Club is the same, albeit smaller.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby Bicycler » 10 Apr 2016, 3:41pm

I think people are continuing to confuse this rebrand with a new change of focus. The change of focus many are lamenting happened quite a long time ago. "Touring" was removed from the brand name in 1998. The CTC has had a charity aspect since 2002. The whole shebang became a charity in 2012. I've forgotten exactly when in the past few years the objectives were re-written.

I've yet to see anything to indicate a change of policy to coincide with the new brand. The objectives haven't changed, so I see no reason to assume that the Cyclists' Touring Club will act any differently under the new brand "Cycling UK" to how it has recently acted under the old brand "CTC - The National Cycling Charity"

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby Paulatic » 10 Apr 2016, 4:29pm

You are right, I believe a lot of us are waking up to what exactly the charitable status means. If the rebrand had been voiced and a condition of becoming charitable I'd bet we'd still be a club.
Looking around on other social media sites there is a faction out there who are quite pleased to be loosing what they refer to as bearded greys. In their eyes our (oldies) belief to cycle on roads has held back investment in cycle infrastructure. They maybe young, inexperienced and naive but they want CUK to take a direction without us.
That is their prerogative and I understand their frustration, as I was young once. I hope they achieve whatever it is without funding from me.
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Si
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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby Si » 10 Apr 2016, 4:40pm

My impression is not that anyone wants to dump touring, rather they want to expand to cater for the majority of cyclists, especially those cyclists-in-waiting who don't yet have the confidence or knowledge to start riding. It may be these very people who are tomorrow's tourists.

Of course, there are some extreme views on all sides of the debate. But I don't think that many really want to see it as being "Beardy-saddle" touring only or, at the other extreme, community-engagement only. I would hope that most would believe that there is room for everyone.

Indeed, the people in my group that do most engaging with non-cyclists and most encouragement to people to get going are the oldest members of the group, the young 'uns are more likely to just want to go ride (understandable given that they are more likely to be working, looking after kids, etc so less time).

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby PH » 10 Apr 2016, 5:28pm

honesty wrote: I'm coming more round to the idea that joining A.UK may be a better use of my money as it seem to be more along the lines of the rides I do regularly rather than once or twice a year.

You seem to have some confusion about what AUK is, they don't organise the rides, but regulate and validate them. The rides are run by local clubs, many (If not most) are CTC Member Groups.
If you enjoy Audax, then yes join and support the organisation, get the magazine, cheaper entry (Also a benefit of being a CTC member) and get on the points table. But it isn't really comparable to CTC, for a start the insurance only covers you while on an Audax ride.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby geocycle » 10 Apr 2016, 6:47pm

Si wrote:My impression is not that anyone wants to dump touring, rather they want to expand to cater for the majority of cyclists, especially those cyclists-in-waiting who don't yet have the confidence or knowledge to start riding. It may be these very people who are tomorrow's tourists.

Of course, there are some extreme views on all sides of the debate. But I don't think that many really want to see it as being "Beardy-saddle" touring only or, at the other extreme, community-engagement only. I would hope that most would believe that there is room for everyone.

Indeed, the people in my group that do most engaging with non-cyclists and most encouragement to people to get going are the oldest members of the group, the young 'uns are more likely to just want to go ride (understandable given that they are more likely to be working, looking after kids, etc so less time).


Yes, I think you are correct that CUK is happy for the touring side to carry on as long as it does not put off the charity aspirations. It seems the registered name of the CTC will not be changing, probably because this would be difficult. If the CUK had been proposed as the name for campaigning wing and CTC the touring wing the outcry would have been less. This is more or less what we had.

My complaint is the way it has been conducted is poor and unecessarilly divisive. The touring aspect makes us distinctive and did not need to be hidden away.
The CUK name is poor and not well thought out.
The logo is amateur.
An opportunity has been lost.

It might still be possible to rescue things if the management decide to define a continuity CTC in parallel to the CUK. See posts by Richard F

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honesty
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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby honesty » 10 Apr 2016, 6:51pm

PH wrote:
honesty wrote: I'm coming more round to the idea that joining A.UK may be a better use of my money as it seem to be more along the lines of the rides I do regularly rather than once or twice a year.

You seem to have some confusion about what AUK is, they don't organise the rides, but regulate and validate them. The rides are run by local clubs, many (If not most) are CTC Member Groups.
If you enjoy Audax, then yes join and support the organisation, get the magazine, cheaper entry (Also a benefit of being a CTC member) and get on the points table. But it isn't really comparable to CTC, for a start the insurance only covers you while on an Audax ride.


Yes, probably :) . I was not aware about that part of the insurance until I checked again, but as I have decent TP insurance under my household policy it's not really a problem.

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Re: What is CUK now?

Postby old_windbag » 11 Apr 2016, 12:41pm

As the personal liability cover of home insurance seem's to cover exactly what CTC were including. Why not join AUK and also join British Cycling, choosing the appropriate plan. I think if done wisely you would still have change out of the CTC subscription charge( for those waged ). Yet have the benefits of tourist oriented rides and campaigning for better infrastructure etc. BC seems to advertise it does this.