First Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle builds on city's cycling legacy

Published on
April 16, 2024

Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle, a new free cycling event on Sunday 9 June, was announced today (Tuesday 16 April), offering a unique opportunity for people of all ages and abilities to cycle on traffic-free roads through the heart of the city.

The event builds on Glasgow City Council’s commitment to create a bike-friendly city and Glasgow Life’s activities supporting people of all ages to enjoy the many benefits of cycling, and on the legacy of last year’s spectacular UCI Cycling World Championships which attracted more than 500,000 spectators. In 2019, Glasgow became the first city in the UK to be awarded UCI Bike City status for its commitment to developing community cycling and related infrastructure and programmes.

The inaugural Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle route is a four-mile loop of traffic-free roads taking in the historic Glasgow Green, Merchant City and George Square and features Festival Zones where riders can stop to enjoy free, family-friendly fun activities along the route. Other sites of interest on the route include the historic City Chambers, Duke of Wellington, Glasgow Cross, People’s Palace, Nelson Monument and McLennan Arch.

Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle is free to take part and there is no limit how many laps you do. Register for more information now at or just come along and ride on the day.

Bailie Annette Christie, Glasgow Life Chair and City Convener for Culture, Sport and International Relations, said: “The huge success of the inaugural UCI Cycling World Championships in Glasgow last summer, which showcased the city’s passion for sport to a global audience, helped build a lasting legacy that has inspired so many to make cycling part of their lives.

“We’re committed to supporting people in Glasgow to enjoy cycling’s many benefits to physical and mental health and enhance their lives. The development of cycling-related activity in our communities is a priority, to encourage and enable more people – regardless of background, age, or ability – to get on a bike for recreation, sport and travel. And we’re fortunate Glasgow not only boasts a world-class velodrome that can be used by those learning to cycle as well as elite riders, but also has many great community cycling hubs and groups that help overcome barriers to take up cycling and offer activities for both beginners and experienced cyclists.

“We’re therefore delighted the city is hosting the Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle as a wonderful celebration of The Power of The Bike, and we’d encourage as many people as possible to sign up and experience what promises to be a fantastic free, fun event.”  

Hugh Brasher, Event Director of organisers London Marathon Events, said: “Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle is a wonderful addition to the rich cycling heritage of this great city. Glasgow has become one of the most accessible cities in the UK for cyclists and leads the way in demonstrating the benefits of getting out on your bike, whether it’s for your physical or mental health, or to support active travel initiatives.

“It’s a great way to ride on traffic-free roads past some of Glasgow’s most iconic landmarks and enjoy the city with your family and friends – all at your own speed.”  

Lisa Brankin, Chair & Managing Director of Ford Britain & Ireland, said: “Ford is pleased to sponsor the new Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle. Through our Park the Car initiative we promote thinking twice about using your car for short distances – and cycling is one of the alternatives we promote. We hope that Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle will encourage more people to engage with cycling across Glasgow and Scotland.”

The Festival Zones, located at George Street and Glasgow Green, will feature a range of spectacular activations, from bike stunt shows and street performances to cycle skills training and inclusive open cycle sessions. There will be mechanical help on offer to those in need and a range of food and drink concessions, plus music, games and face painting.

Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle runs between 10:00 and 16:00 on Sunday 9 June, with the Festival Zone open across the weekend at George Square. The Zone will be open between midday and 19:00 on Friday 7 June, 10:00 and 19:00 on Saturday 8 June and 10:00 and 17:00 on Sunday 9 June. The Glasgow Green Festival Zone will be available between 10:00 and 17:00 on Sunday 9 June.  

For those who don’t own a bike, Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle can be enjoyed on an OVO bike. With more than 50 docking stations across the city, joining in is possible for everyone. To locate your nearest docking station, click here. Information on how to get started is available on the OVO Bikes’ website.

Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle builds on the existing cycling heritage of the city, with more than 415K of cycling network already in place, with plans to invest more than £100 million and add another 270K of infrastructure in the next five years, funding permitting. Glasgow City Council is targeting improved access for all, including schools which will all be within 400 metres of the cycling network, while residents and visitors will be able to access any part of the city by bike within 30 minutes.  

Register to find out more about Ford RideGlasgow FreeCycle at