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Cycles

Duration:
30 minutes
First broadcast:
Saturday 25 June 2011

Sandi Toksvig looks at the simplicity and versatility of the bicycle as a travel machine with three very different cyclists. Susie Wheeldon rode 22,000 kilometres around the world, crossing deserts from Tunisia to Arizona, as she and her companions were researching solar energy. Robert Penn leads cycling weekends in the hills of the Brecon Beacons where the ups are as satisfying as the downs. And Matt Carroll recommends day trips in some of England's most beautiful countryside. Together they discuss the feeling of freedom realised in today's world by a device which hasn't changed its basic design for over 130 years.

Producer: Harry Parker.

  • Robert Penn

    is a cycling journalist who writes amongst others for the Sunday Times as the ‘Cycle Guy’. He has just published the paperback of his book ‘It’s All About The Bike’ charting the history and practice of cycling including John Kemp Starley’s groundbreaking Rover of 1885 and Annie Londonderry who set off from Boston to cycle around the world armed with a pearl-handled revolver.

    It’s All About the Bike: the Pursuit of Happiness on Two Wheels
    Publisher: Penguin
    ISBN-10: 0141043792
    ISBN-13: 978-0141043791

    Find out more about Robert Penn
  • Susie Wheeldon

    is a bike activist and modern day round-the-world female cyclist. In May 2009 she and two friends set off on their journey testing solar powered panniers on the way. Their 22,000 kilometres trek in nine months took them through France, North Africa, the Middle East, central Asia, China and the USA, crossing some of the world’s hottest and driest deserts.

    Find out more about Susie Wheeldon
  • Matt Carroll

    is a travel writer, presenter and film maker. Matt is also a keen cyclist and has done road racing and off road mountain biking. For his latest endeavour, a guide to day-long cycle rides in England, the freedom to explore and travelling light took priority as well as the comfort of pleasant hotels and pubs.

    Escape Routes. A Handpicked Selection of Stunning Cycle Rides Around England
    Publisher: Punk Publishing Ltd
    ISBN-10: 1906889104
    ISBN-13: 978-1906889104

    Find out more about Matt Carroll

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