Hitchin Nomads Cycling Club has achieved the landmark of 100 members thanks to the support of British Cycling (BC). The Hertfordshire based club which was founded in 1931 has worked closely with Josie Heffernan (regional lead for BC) to reinvigorate its membership base following the rise in interest in cycling in the UK from 2012 onwards. The cornerstone of the club’s growth has been the use of the British Cycling Club Manager tool and also a really active use of social and digital media.
Amongst other statistics, the club has 230 Facebook followers in its open group and also has an online library of hundreds of GPS friendly routes, club runs and training circuits. Nomads’ Chairman, Nick Senechal, commented:
“The club, like many others in the late 1990s and early 2000s found itself struggling for members and new blood and it fell on to a core group of us to look at new ways of promoting the discipline of cycling in the area and of embracing some of the tools and support that was being developed by British Cycling. We now have one of the most professionally presented and lively online cycling communities in the Region. Importantly, we have used tools which are free at the point of use to our members and our online budget is probably less than the price of a new tyre. It goes to show what can be done with the right group of volunteers.”
Membership Officer and BC Licensed Coach, Simon Doyle, added:
“The communication channels we have created has made our membership really coherent and a sense of identity has been generated through some simple, yet novel ideas. We offer a free club jersey for first time members and we also encourage all ages and genders to get involved. Although there is a serious element to racing in disciplines, spanning Cyclo-Cross, Time Trialling and Road Racing, there is a strong social element too which brings newcomers in to the sport and club.”
Over 20% of the Nomads’ membership is female and 50% of our membership are also British Cycling Members.