2024 will officially be the year to get on your bike after it was confirmed Manchester has won the bid to become the ACES European Capital of Cycling.

A hugely significant moment for the cycling movement in Manchester, the Council is confident this accolade will act as a springboard for further investment and participation throughout the city.

This achievement could not have been possible without the combined effort of many partners and agencies across the city; they include British Cycling, Marketing Manchester, Cycling UK, Mcr Active and TfGM, as well as important involvement from our voluntary sector.

Ahead of the final decision, the Council and partners welcomed a delegation from ACES to Manchester to showcase what Manchester could offer if it was made the European Capital of Cycling.

From the National Cycling Centre, to mile upon mile of new cycleways being built in the city, to Manchester playing host to some of the biggest events in world cycling, it was made clear to all that Manchester was a perfect choice to be named Capital of Cycling.

In the new year more information will be made public about what this will mean for Manchester and what exciting events will be added to the calendar, as well as how local community groups and organisations can get involved, how we can help build local cycling clubs, and how access to cycling for everyone can be improved.

The Council also sees this moment as an opportunity to see the next generation of British cycling talent developed, opening youngsters up to the possibilities of cycling, and staying true to the “Pedal More in ‘24” ethos this bid harnessed.

A website will go live in January 2024 setting out everything that will be taking place and opportunities to get involved. Keep your eyes peeled for that launch date.

Councillor John Hacking, Executive Member for Skills, Employment and Leisure for Manchester City Council, said: “I’m absolutely thrilled that Manchester was chosen as the ACES European Capital of Cycling for 2024.
“We have a hugely ambitious agenda in this city, setting out how we can work with partners and local groups to improve people’s access to cycling and how we can make this one of the primary modes of transport for our residents.

“To be made the Capital of Cycling sends a clear and important message that we as a city are ready to be at the forefront of the conversation around cycling, and what a vital role it plays in the future of Manchester.”

Gian F. Lupattelli, President and Founder of ACES Europe, said: “Manchester has demonstrated a sporting DNA with cycling as a pivotal policy for the development of mobility, exercise, and physical activity. We hope it sets a great example for future candidates competing for the award, with Manchester serving as a mirror and reference.”

British Cycling CEO, Jon Dutton, said: “At British Cycling we’ve been proud to call Manchester our home for almost three decades, and with its vibrant communities, world-class facilities and investment in active travel, the city is leading the way when it comes to helping more people to ride more often. Being awarded the European Capital of Cycling for 2024 is fitting recognition for the progress that the region has made.”

Greater Manchester’s Active Travel Commissioner, Dame Sarah Storey, said: “I’m really looking forward to working with Manchester on their Year of Cycling and supporting their clear ambition of making it easier for people to ride a bike in the borough.

“As the regional centre, Manchester holds the key to unlocking a lot of potential for cycling in Greater Manchester and it is great to see their progress made on creating safer routes and removing inaccessible barriers so more children and adults can cycle safely – with more to come in 2024.”