Roll Model: Jools of Lady Velo

As part of the new LGRAB, every Tuesday we will profile an inspiring everyday cyclist—a weekly series called “Roll Models.”

This week’s Roll Model is Jools, aka “LadyVelo,” who blogs about her adventures on two wheels in East London at Vélo-City-Girl. Jools sets the bar pretty high when it comes to cycling in style—and she’s only been at it two years! Read on for a glimpse of the London cycling life.

Jools and her Pashley!

Describe your bicycling style in three words.
Stylish, leisurely, fun!

How long have you been riding a bike?
I’ve been riding my Pashley for just over two years (two years and two months to be exact!)

Describe where you live and cycle.
I live in Newham in East London, which is now famous for hosting the 2012 Olympic Games! As I cycle to work (also in East London) I do ride around the area a lot. Improvements are being made around here for cyclists, but there is still a lot of work to be done on the cycling infrastructure around here. When I’m out with The Boy on our bikes, we often cycle across London for our Coffee & Cake Saturday rides, which is ace! Getting around London by bike is the best way to really see and appreciate the City!

How does bicycling fit into and/or shape your life?
Bicycling has had a huge effect on my life: It’s been a fantastic way to meet new and likeminded people who enjoy the freedom of cycling… and who also enjoy mixing fashion with two wheels! My levels of fitness have also improved since getting my Pashley and starting to ride again… it’s been amazing.

In your experience, does the general bicycling world—shops, outreach, group rides, etc.—feel welcoming for you as a woman?
In my honest opinion, I find that the smaller / independent bike shops are always more welcoming to women riders. Some of the larger chain bicycle shops seem to be heavily geared towards men, which is a pity as there is a huge female cycling demographic out there. When it comes to group rides, women are being catered for with rides organised by the likes of Breeze Network, who are reaching out to female cyclists wanting to get back on the saddle—encouragement is key.

What is your take on the “gender gap” in cycling, including media attention on how to get more women to bicycle?
I really hope to see the day when there isn’t a “Gander Gap” in cycling when it comes to media attention / getting more women cycling….

If you could magically change one thing to improve bicycling in your city, what would it be?
The current CS Cycle Highways we have. I’d make them wider and adopt a similar style to those in Berlin

Do you feel optimistic about the future of bicycling?
I do feel optimistic about the future of cycling in London. Although it may feel like a tough battle at the moment, so many people / organisations / bloggers and such are campaigning for improvements here . . . voices will be heard and changes will be made.

Any advice for people, especially women, who want to start cycling?
Go for it! Do some research and look into getting a bike suited to your needs, and go at your own pace. Between me taking up cycling again in March 2010, there was a 10-year gap—it’s NEVER too late to start riding! It’s also very likely that there will be women-only cycle groups in your area—check them out and go on group rides or rides with friends to build up your confidence if needed…

Final words?
Be safe, be happy & enjoy being on your bike! x



Thanks for sharing your story, Jools! For more, visit her at Vélo-City-Girl or on FB or twitter.

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9 thoughts on “Roll Model: Jools of Lady Velo

  1. Jax+Puzzle says:

    Jools, you look so stylish and happy with your Pashley! I love the brick streets and classic styling of the Pashley together, paired with your colorful clothing – you must turn a lot of heads! :-). I was in London this time last year and was completely enamored with the city, so historic and vibrant. We were only able to cycle a little, but I hope to return soon and explore more by bicycle. It must be amazing to ride in London every day!

  2. Kara says:

    I love Jools. She knows how to rock that Pashley. Hard. 

    Love her style and attitude! Thanks for being a roll model. 

  3. Misssarahchan says:

    Love seeing another Pashley sister out there. And, those legs. Woman, you are outta control (looking fine)!

  4. Chrissy says:

    totes jeally. Now i feel like i have to go shopping.

  5. Dottie says:

    Jools’ sense of fun and fashion shines through!  I’d love to ride around London with her one day.  :)

  6. I enjoy learning more about cycling in London through Jool’s blog! TFS!

  7. Jools is gorgeous! I love her outfits and that she shows off all that beautiful skin. 

    I’m still learning to wear something other than long pants, with summer coming. I did wear a short jean skirt on Mother’s Day though, and I’m itching to make myself some skirts after my current sewing project is finished- it was so much more comfortable to ride in!

  8. merry says:

    i. want. those. legs.

    that is all…

  9. Karen says:

    I love Jools’ blog and the chance to see the cycling world on the other side of the pond!  Visiting her blog is like taking a trip to London.

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