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Black History Month bike rides offer a ‘sense of belonging’

After their second Black History Month bike ride, three avid cyclists say they have a “great focus on joy” within their cycling collective.

22-mile ride across Central London Organized by the team of Together We Ride (TWR), a black-led collective dedicated to empowering people through cycling, “uplifting” each other and engaging more people in the sport.

Nevin Sunderji, Kamar Omar and Mona Musa-Gray all joined a group of more than 60 people to cycle through the city on Sunday, stopping at the capital’s 10 blue plaques and monuments to commemorate black people and telling their stories. Did.

start from london bridgetheir stops included Bob Marley’s house on Oakley Street in Chelsea. EnglishPhyllis Wheatley, Aldgatea gilt sculpture of Cain commemorating the abolition of the slave trade in the city’s Fenn Court.

“It gives us a sense of belonging as a group and as black people who visit these monuments. Hounslowtold the PA News Agency.

“We know they were there a long time ago, but it’s not taught in history classes here in the UK…we’re made like all black people were slaves.

“No, it wasn’t. We live our lives, we make our fortunes, we have doctors, neurologists and many in high places, but it’s never been properly celebrated in Britain.

“I was very, very moved and happy. I was a little sad at times…but it’s a pride, a great pride.”

Musa-Gray works at Black Unity Bike Ride. The Black Unity Bike Ride is a series of ‘activations’ to promote wellness in the Black community, comprising over 20 Black-led cycling collectives.

She described the bike tour as an “important place” for black people to gather, but also touched on the “sad reality” of the history behind many of the monuments.

“When you visit these different places, you see a wide range of people, from artists and politicians to civil rights influencers and doctors. It was skill,” the 38-year-old told PA.

“At some point, we try to respect what we can do, but it definitely brings back that sense of belonging.

“And unfortunately, I must say, personally, that it is a reminder of the corruption we have had to endure and overcome, the denial of our freedom and the denial of our excellence. I will let you.”

Musa-Gray also said that the ride and being part of TWR allows the group to “spread the love.”

“Being able to have a space where we can gather is very important to us,” she said.

“We don’t leave anyone out. People of all backgrounds and shades participate, but having a club led or owned by a Black person is very important to continue to thrive in cycling.” I feel that

“And when you’re with a bunch of people who are loud, loud, and just want to sing a song… you’re just doing it and they’re like, ‘Oh, I’m crazy. I don’t feel like you’re looking at me like…’

“It’s about giving each other space. It’s a cycling club, but there’s a lot of focus on pleasure.”

It was the first cycle of TWR for 33-year-old Omar, a teaching assistant at a primary school in Wandsworth. He said it was “amazing” to participate in Black History Month biking.

“I loved it. It was so welcoming,” she said.

“And everyone seemed very happy.

“I think Black History Month should be celebrated all year round.”

Omar said it was “very interesting” for the group to learn “who these people were and what they went through.”

“They’ve been through a lot, but not everyone knows the real history,” she said.

“And when some of the lovely riders who were with us were reading the actual history, it was very interesting.

“And then I got to go back and learn a little more about our history.”

Sunderage added that while the tour might have worked for runners and walkers, cycling is “a different feeling.”

“We’re a family that loves to ride two wheels. I think it just has that extra element of freedom,” she said.

“When I am on my bike, I feel very liberated.

“You are there, just flying.”

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/london-london-bridge-english-aldgate-hounslow-b2205700.html Black History Month bike rides offer a ‘sense of belonging’

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