Why didn’t CTC do this?

Discussion of the re-branding of CTC as Cycling UK.
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Philip Benstead
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Philip Benstead » 30 Mar 2016, 7:32pm

Si wrote:
PH wrote:
Si wrote:As for changing to Affiliate groups: in some ways I welcome it. It puts cycling within the reach of many more people.

Something has gone seriously wrong if the best way for a local group to contribute the the national ambition is to leave.


Not so much 'gone wrong'.....if the CTC was predominantly about promoting touring to 'keen cyclists' then the MG system works fine in theory: this is your hobby where you are happy to spend your disposable income so the membership fee won't put you off (assuming you believe the benefits are worth while).

But the CTC's (or should I say "Cycling UK's"...I notice in the draft govt transport strategy there is a big bit on the Bike Revival and it uses the term Cycling UK) main aim is not to promote touring but to promote all cycling. In which case, running it as a special interest club is not for beneficial. By promoting all cycling touring cyclists benefit, by promoting touring, only tourists benefit. If you are a died in the wool tourist I can see why you would rather it was heavily loaded towards touring cyclists, I do much more utility cycling than touring and so believe that the CTC/CUK should be supporting all forms of cycling.


Given that the CTC membership figures are going downward

Question How long do we need to use Cycling UK before we decide it is either successful or un-successful?
One year?
Two years?
Philip Benstead | CTC London and FORMER CTC Councillor SE
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Velocio
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Velocio » 30 Mar 2016, 7:46pm

How long do we need to use Cycling UK before we decide it is either successful or un-successful? One year? Two years?


...one week ...two weeks ...hopefully...!!
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Si
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Si » 30 Mar 2016, 7:51pm

Given that the CTC membership figures are going downward

Question How long do we need to use Cycling UK before we decide it is either successful or un-successful?


Given that numbers are going downwards and we are not yet CUK, one might logically suggest that the change to CUK isn't the cause. One might also suggest if numbers are going down while we are "CTC" then the dissatisfaction (if it is brand based) is with being "CTC".

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Philip Benstead
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Philip Benstead » 30 Mar 2016, 7:54pm

Si wrote:
Given that the CTC membership figures are going downward

Question How long do we need to use Cycling UK before we decide it is either successful or un-successful?


Given that numbers are going downwards and we are not yet CUK, one might logically suggest that the change to CUK isn't the cause. One might also suggest if numbers are going down while we are "CTC" then the dissatisfaction (if it is brand based) is with being "CTC".


It has been suggested to me today that HOE left was that increasing fees and decreasing benefits
Philip Benstead | CTC London and FORMER CTC Councillor SE
| 0794-980-1698 | philipbenstead1@gmail.com |
Organizing events and representing cyclist in southeast since 1988
Cycle Ride? http://www.meetup.com/socialcycling4u/
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gaz
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby gaz » 30 Mar 2016, 7:55pm

Philip Benstead wrote:Question How long do we need to use Cycling UK before we decide it is either successful or un-successful?
One year?
Two years?

Nice to know that you are considering a timescale in years, some only give it months in view of the forthcoming Poll of the Whole Club :wink: .

More seriously we will use Cycling UK until we decide something else will be more succesful, then it will be added to our heritage. Winged Wheel since 1886, Wobbly Bike Thingy since 1998, Cycling UK logo since 2016 ...

Si wrote:... CUK ...

Please read the branding kit,Cycling UK is not to be abbreviated to it's initials under any circumstances. It's probably punishable as blasphemy :wink: .
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby TonyR » 30 Mar 2016, 8:44pm

Philip Benstead wrote:It has been suggested to me today that HOE left was that increasing fees and decreasing benefits


Nothing at all to do with that although some are trying to spin it that way.

This is the crux of the issue with the CTC rebranding. According to HoECC there were only 50 CTC MG members out of over 1100 CTC members in their catchment area. They represented as an MG less than 5% of their local CTC membership. And their "substantially increased" membership since the change is the addition of 25 non-CTC members - out of how many tens of thousands of cyclists in their catchment area?

The picture is very similar with the MGs I ride with and I suspect is typical across the MGs. As attached as we are to our MGs they no longer represent the vast majority of the CTC membership or their interests.

The CTC has moved on and its membership wants different things from it. With probably 3-4,000 MG members across the country it will make little difference to the CTC if the MGs and all their members leave. And on their own they are barely enough to make a viable stand alone national club.

The real reason the HoECC changed to affliliation is given on their website and is not as some are trying to portray, to do with the changes at the CTC. It just serves to confirm the above and in many ways endorses the move the CTC is making to rebrand and reposition. (my emphasis added below)

More detail on the reasoning:

During the past two and half years we have marketed ourselves to the local 1,100 CTC members extensively. We have had only limited success, recruiting just a handful of new regulars; not enough to cover those who shall inevitably leave us shortly due to their advancing years. The response to the last two broadcast emails we sent to local CTC members, resulted in no new riders attending our Introductory Rides.

We can only conclude that interest from other local CTC Members has now dried up and that we have exhausted that route. From an already low base, the regular ride numbers will inevitably now start to drop further. Meanwhile, the average age of our group riders & volunteers continues to rise.

The Committee feels that, in order to survive as a club in the longer term, we need to have a re-brand and re-focus of the group. We need to make it easier for people to join, do some new activities and market ourselves to the wider cycling community.

It is hoped that the existing fifty or so regular riders will see little change and continue to attend rides and help support the new club. It is also hoped, that the lower cost option of the CTC Affiliated Membership rate, will appeal to the existing riders and the wider group of riders that we should be trying to attract.

http://www.heartofenglandcyclingclub.or ... cling-club
Last edited by TonyR on 30 Mar 2016, 9:18pm, edited 2 times in total.

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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Labrat » 30 Mar 2016, 9:01pm

Si wrote:Not so much 'gone wrong'.....if the CTC was predominantly about promoting touring to 'keen cyclists' then the MG system works fine in theory: this is your hobby where you are happy to spend your disposable income so the membership fee won't put you off (assuming you believe the benefits are worth while).

But the CTC's (or should I say "Cycling UK's"...I notice in the draft govt transport strategy there is a big bit on the Bike Revival and it uses the term Cycling UK) main aim is not to promote touring but to promote all cycling. In which case, running it as a special interest club is not for beneficial. By promoting all cycling touring cyclists benefit, by promoting touring, only tourists benefit. If you are a died in the wool tourist I can see why you would rather it was heavily loaded towards touring cyclists, I do much more utility cycling than touring and so believe that the CTC/CUK should be supporting all forms of cycling.


Si, this is much the way I see it.

Some might like to recall CTC's 'global strategy' for 2013-2020: http://www.ctc.org.uk/about-ctc/policie ... -direction

To me, the key statement there is that "For both on-road and off-road cyclists we will be the natural home"

Certainly as someone who's primary interest has always been off road cycling/mountain biking (I very much prefer the French VTT classification as being more inclusive of everyone who rides off road for recreation, exploration skills or sport) I feel very strongly that CTC has been failing me, and my sport, for many years.

Current stats (Natural England MENE data) show that offroad/VTT constitutes about one third of all recreational cycling (i.e. once we discard commuting/transport and utility cycling) - on that basis it certainly hasn't had a fair share of the resources or priority of the organisation over the years. While lip service was paid and a lot of good work was done, the real issues and leadership that offroad needed were never really given the effort that was deserved - certainly if you take into account the much clearer importance of VTT to the tourist and rural economy in the wake of foot and mouth - we've heard months and months of outrage and constant winging from Philip and his ilk over the loss of the 'touring officer' but barely a [ flying whisper ] was given by any of them over the gradual loss of the offroad team over the last few years.

I want CTC to represent ALL recreational and lifestyle cyclists, not just the select few - BC's direction and remit is clearly sport, CTC is the home for everyone else. I think that the conversion to CyclingUK is a huge step down that road, allowing the organisation to shed the problems of the past and reposition itself where it damn well should be.

If that upsets Philip and his mates who want to leave so that they can remain a clique of predominantly white, male, grumpy old farts with carradice saddlebags because changing somehow disrespects the 'history' of the organisation then I think that the cycling community that CTC was set up to represent is well rid of them.

A few miles away from here, a CTC affiliated group under the auspices of AGE-UK has been taking out dozens of people aged 50+ and getting them into off-road cycling - these are absolutely people who would never have categorised themselves as 'cyclists' and never dreamed of joining a CTC member group - what they are doing is riding bloody bikes, and they have just put out a plea for help in getting more women out with them. Bloody fantastic I say, and I want to see CTC knuckling down and supporting things like this in every way possible - if its at the expense of a few member benefits for those of us who have been riding for years, or means giving support to an affiliated group rather than a member group, then I say go ahead and flipping well do it. I will happily keep paying my membership to an organisation that supports grass roots cycling like this at the expense of member benefits, I think that its everything that CTC should be about.

In the grand scheme of things, more bums on saddles is the best member benefit any of us could ever dream of!
Last edited by Graham on 30 Mar 2016, 9:18pm, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: thinly disguised * replaced

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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby gaz » 30 Mar 2016, 9:19pm

As a white, male, grumpy old fart with a Carradice saddlebag I trust that CTC in its new guise of Cycling UK will remain an inclusive organisation welcoming of all people.
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Philip Benstead
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Philip Benstead » 30 Mar 2016, 10:30pm

Labrat wrote:
Si wrote:Not so much 'gone wrong'.....if the CTC was predominantly about promoting touring to 'keen cyclists' then the MG system works fine in theory: this is your hobby where you are happy to spend your disposable income so the membership fee won't put you off (assuming you believe the benefits are worth while).

But the CTC's (or should I say "Cycling UK's"...I notice in the draft govt transport strategy there is a big bit on the Bike Revival and it uses the term Cycling UK) main aim is not to promote touring but to promote all cycling. In which case, running it as a special interest club is not for beneficial. By promoting all cycling touring cyclists benefit, by promoting touring, only tourists benefit. If you are a died in the wool tourist I can see why you would rather it was heavily loaded towards touring cyclists, I do much more utility cycling than touring and so believe that the CTC/CUK should be supporting all forms of cycling.


Si, this is much the way I see it.

Some might like to recall CTC's 'global strategy' for 2013-2020: http://www.ctc.org.uk/about-ctc/policie ... -direction

To me, the key statement there is that "For both on-road and off-road cyclists we will be the natural home"

Certainly as someone who's primary interest has always been off road cycling/mountain biking (I very much prefer the French VTT classification as being more inclusive of everyone who rides off road for recreation, exploration skills or sport) I feel very strongly that CTC has been failing me, and my sport, for many years.

Current stats (Natural England MENE data) show that offroad/VTT constitutes about one third of all recreational cycling (i.e. once we discard commuting/transport and utility cycling) - on that basis it certainly hasn't had a fair share of the resources or priority of the organisation over the years. While lip service was paid and a lot of good work was done, the real issues and leadership that offroad needed were never really given the effort that was deserved - certainly if you take into account the much clearer importance of VTT to the tourist and rural economy in the wake of foot and mouth - we've heard months and months of outrage and constant winging from Philip and his ilk over the loss of the 'touring officer' but barely a [ flying whisper ] was given by any of them over the gradual loss of the offroad team over the last few years.

I want CTC to represent ALL recreational and lifestyle cyclists, not just the select few - BC's direction and remit is clearly sport, CTC is the home for everyone else. I think that the conversion to CyclingUK is a huge step down that road, allowing the organisation to shed the problems of the past and reposition itself where it damn well should be.

If that upsets Philip and his mates who want to leave so that they can remain a clique of predominantly white, male, grumpy old farts with carradice saddlebags because changing somehow disrespects the 'history' of the organisation then I think that the cycling community that CTC was set up to represent is well rid of them.

A few miles away from here, a CTC affiliated group under the auspices of AGE-UK has been taking out dozens of people aged 50+ and getting them into off-road cycling - these are absolutely people who would never have categorised themselves as 'cyclists' and never dreamed of joining a CTC member group - what they are doing is riding bloody bikes, and they have just put out a plea for help in getting more women out with them. Bloody fantastic I say, and I want to see CTC knuckling down and supporting things like this in every way possible - if its at the expense of a few member benefits for those of us who have been riding for years, or means giving support to an affiliated group rather than a member group, then I say go ahead and flipping well do it. I will happily keep paying my membership to an organisation that supports grass roots cycling like this at the expense of member benefits, I think that its everything that CTC should be about.

In the grand scheme of things, more bums on saddles is the best member benefit any of us could ever dream of!


First of all i am ridding a brompton at the moment, I lead 12 rides a years at beginner level at about 25 miles. Regarding rough stuff i have been doing it for years including many crossing of the pennines. I was founder of a newcomers group for the West Kent DA . As to getting people to ride mountain bikes, it is my understanding the sale of mountain bikes are going down, it is now all road bikes.. Off course you may live in area that is mountain bike countryside. YOU will see the next addition of cycle the CTC CEO will be taking about CTC’s heritage campaigning, inclusive cycling projects, lobbying, advice, forums, cycling holidays, etc. What is the point of 50 plus I am 63 I train people to rides bikes between 5 and 65. Most of adults I train are females. So i think I know about the market for cycling orgainization, please tell me what pertage of cyclists in netherland are members of a cycling groups?
Philip Benstead | CTC London and FORMER CTC Councillor SE
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby PH » 31 Mar 2016, 12:08am

TonyR wrote:The CTC has moved on and its membership wants different things from it. With probably 3-4,000 MG members across the country it will make little difference to the CTC if the MGs and all their members leave. And on their own they are barely enough to make a viable stand alone national club.

I can't find the reference, but I understand the last survey showed 19% of members participated in MG activities, so somewhere around 13,000 members?
I haven't met many members who think the whole organisation should be run for the member groups, but IMO it's a sizable enough proportion not to be ignored either.

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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby PH » 31 Mar 2016, 12:12am

Si wrote:
PH wrote:
Si wrote:As for changing to Affiliate groups: in some ways I welcome it. It puts cycling within the reach of many more people.

Something has gone seriously wrong if the best way for a local group to contribute the the national ambition is to leave.


Not so much 'gone wrong'.....if the CTC was predominantly about promoting touring to 'keen cyclists' then the MG system works fine in theory: this is your hobby where you are happy to spend your disposable income so the membership fee won't put you off (assuming you believe the benefits are worth while).

But the CTC's (or should I say "Cycling UK's"...I notice in the draft govt transport strategy there is a big bit on the Bike Revival and it uses the term Cycling UK) main aim is not to promote touring but to promote all cycling. In which case, running it as a special interest club is not for beneficial. By promoting all cycling touring cyclists benefit, by promoting touring, only tourists benefit. If you are a died in the wool tourist I can see why you would rather it was heavily loaded towards touring cyclists, I do much more utility cycling than touring and so believe that the CTC/CUK should be supporting all forms of cycling.


I would agree with all of that if the only activity MGs organised were touring rides, this isn't my experience at all.

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Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby TonyR » 31 Mar 2016, 7:56am

PH wrote:
TonyR wrote:The CTC has moved on and its membership wants different things from it. With probably 3-4,000 MG members across the country it will make little difference to the CTC if the MGs and all their members leave. And on their own they are barely enough to make a viable stand alone national club.

I can't find the reference, but I understand the last survey showed 19% of members participated in MG activities, so somewhere around 13,000 members?


I would be surprised by that figure and its doesn't reconcile with my experience with MGs. For example the most successful MG is Stevenage and North Herts. Their region has a very high per capita CTC membership and a very active programme that goes beyond rides. But they only manage 22% of catchment area CTC members who rode with them more than 5 times last year and 14% who rode once a month.

It depends on what you define though as "participated" and it could be like the national figures that 35% of the population or 21 million people "cycle" once a year or more which we all know does not reflect the true levels of cycling in the UK>

Even so, accepting your figure it still means 81% of CTC members do not participate in MG activities and as HoECC found, very few of those have any interest in participating.

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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby TonyR » 31 Mar 2016, 8:11am

Philip Benstead wrote:So i think I know about the market for cycling orgainization, please tell me what pertage of cyclists in netherland are members of a cycling groups?


The Fietsersbond has 35,000 members or double the membership per capita of the CTC.

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Philip Benstead
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Philip Benstead » 31 Mar 2016, 10:28am

TonyR wrote:
Philip Benstead wrote:So i think I know about the market for cycling orgainization, please tell me what pertage of cyclists in netherland are members of a cycling groups?


The Fietsersbond has 35,000 members or double the membership per capita of the CTC.


So the CTC is doing OK, given the number of cyclist in the UK we have high membership

UK Pop 64,100,000
% ride bike 8
Number Cyclist 5,128,000
CTC Membership 66,000
% cyclist members of CTC 0.013


NL Pop 16,800,000
% ride bike 31
Number Cyclist 5,241,600
Fietsersbond Membership 35,000
% cyclist members of Fietsersbond 0.007
Last edited by Philip Benstead on 31 Mar 2016, 10:55am, edited 1 time in total.
Philip Benstead | CTC London and FORMER CTC Councillor SE
| 0794-980-1698 | philipbenstead1@gmail.com |
Organizing events and representing cyclist in southeast since 1988
Cycle Ride? http://www.meetup.com/socialcycling4u/
Bikeability Instructor/Mechanic

Labrat
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Re: Why didn’t CTC do this?

Postby Labrat » 31 Mar 2016, 10:55am

Make your mind up

Members of cycling organisation does not equal members who want to ride with a group

Just a few posts ago you were saying that those who didn't take part in group activities shouldn't be allowed to vote.