The nation's favourite charity bike ride
In Support of Livability
11 September 2022
from 08:00 am
Take on an amazing new route, including the infamous 7-mile long Cat & Fiddle climb, at the 20th anniversary edition of the legendary Cat & Fiddle Challenge ride. Once you leave the start in Burslem, Stoke on Trent, you'Il be taken through some truly stunning lanes, over testing climbs and down grin-inducing descents, taking in spectacular views on our route as it winds through Staffordshire, Cheshire & Derbyshire.
The rides start and finish at Port Vale FCs ground in Burslem, Stoke on Trent, just up the road from Rourke Cycles, where you'll find a great range of bikes, accessories and expert advice. This isn't a race, it's a charity challenge ride open to everyone comfortable on two wheels. So come and get involved, set your own goals and enjoy the ride. No matter if it takes you a couple of hours or the whole day.
The new route that we brought in last year was really well recieved by the riders, so this returns as our primary route option. It takes in some of the best cycling lanes in the area, and ticks off numerous climbs and descents making it a really great day out on the bike.
To complement the Cat & Fiddle Challenge this year we are adding in a whole new route aimed at those that want to get involved with the challenge and help support Livability, but aren't quite as fond of the hills! Our Jodrell Bank Loop takes in another famous local landmark on a circuit that heads to the West and to the decidedly less lumpy terrain of Cheshire before returning to the start.
Learn more about the routes here.
To get involved with this memorable challenge and to help support Livability's crucial work, sign up to take part in the ride HERE. Registration is only £25, so what are you waiting for!?!?
Cat & Fiddle Challenge 2022
Jodrell Bank Loop
A fresh twist on the classic route, including quiet lanes, a little more distance and a touch more climbing. The route still takes in the Cat & Fiddle climb, of course, with the addition of some of the best local lanes around. On this route you'll see landmarks such as Mow Cop Castle and Jodrell Bank, plus take on the roads around Cloudside, the Roaches, Lask Edge and pass through Flash, the highest village in England. This route is signposted, as well as supported with GPS files.
1292 metres of ascent
This new route is a different type of challenge. If you prefer to keep the average speed up rather than the gradient, this could be the one for you. The route splits after the first climb (you can't miss all the hills!), to weave its way through the some of the lovely Cheshire countryside. You'll head out to pass by the famous Lovell telescope at Jodrell Bank, then loop round the undulating lanes before having to climb back up to the finish in Burslem.
tbc metres of ascent
Show your support and show off that you've been part of the Cat & Fiddle Challenge with our stylish new event jersey.
Made by Italian cycling clothing supremos, ALE, we think this jersey looks really classy (just like the riders at the Cat & Fiddle Challenge!). Quality design and manufacture mean that this is more than a cut above your run of the mill event jersey. This is something that you'll love to wear for years to come.
These are available to pre-order for only £45.00, with all profits going directly to supporting our charity partner, Livability.
They are Italian in cut, so order a size larger than usual!
Details & Directions
Full details of the day will be emailed out to all registered riders the week before the ride, but here's some key piece of information for the day.
Parking is provided at Port Vale FC, Hamil Road, Burslem, ST6 1AW. Full details and directions will be emailed out to all riders in the week before the ride.
Registration is open from 8am-10am and is also held at Port Vale FC. Toilets and refreshments will be available at registration. Rourke Cycles will be present at the registration area with a selection of spares and accessories in case you needs any last minute supplies for the ride.
Once you have signed on at registration you can start your ride any time between 8am & 10:15am. Both routes start from Port Vale FC, turning right on to Hamil Road, then right again on to Waterloo Road to begin the route.
The routes will be fully signposted with hi-viz Rourke Cycles branded signs at all junctions where you need to make a turn. There will be different coloured signs for each route, which will be confirmed ahead of the day. Additionally GPS files of the routes will be emailed out to all riders in the week before the ride.
Feed Stations & Support:
There will be a feed station on each route at aroud the halfway point. For the Cat & Fiddle Challenge ride this will be at the Cat & Fiddle Inn at the top of the climb after 51km. The location of the feed station on the Jodrell Bank Loop is yet to be confirmed.
Some basic tools will also be available at the feed stations, plus Rourke Cycle's will have a mobile mechanic out on course to help out with any bigger mechanical problems.
The route finishes as you return to Port Vale FC. Make sure you are signed back in then make your way to the bar and for some complementry food courtesy of our volunteer supporters.
Metres of Ascent
Raised for Charity
Since the Ride's inception in 2002, the Cat & Fiddle Challenge has been able to raise over £700,000 for charitable causes. Once again, this year's ride is organised in support of Livabilty.
Livability is the UK charity that’s committed to enabling people with disabilities to live the full and flourishing life they want to lead.
With 37 residential homes, a specialist school, brain rehabilitation centre, FE College, Wellbeing Centre and Supported Living services, we provide a wide range of care, education and rehabilitation support to over 1,000 people living with complex and severe disabilities every day.
Livability helps people to become more confident, motivated and independent - we enable people with disabilities to thrive. We work to change what’s unliveable – we help people tackle and overcome the barriers in their lives, including any that prevent them participating fully in society, because this negatively affect people’s wellbeing and life expectancy. Our services strive to transform how people with disabilities connect with the communities they choose to be part of.
What makes life liveable is never down to just one thing. It’s the sum of many things: from support to guidance; mobility to freedom; education to employment; friendship to community; a great chat to overcoming challenges together. It all adds up – to Livability.
People with disabilities have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19; should they contract Covid-19 it is highly likely to result in severe illness with potential life-threatening complications. This is reflected in the Office for National Statistics (February 2021) showing two thirds of Covid-19 deaths were in people with disabilities.
Your support in taking part in the Rourke Cycles Cat & Fiddle Challenge enables us to add real value to the amazing people we are privileged to support at Livability.
Read about some of Livability's recent initiatives and activities
The latest photos from the Cat & Fiddle team