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Last Updated: Wednesday September 23 2009 13:37 GMT

Ricky gets on his bike in Blackpool

Ricky on a bike

Ricky checks out Blackpool bikes

Blackpool is set to become the biking capital of the UK after it was given loads of cash to help get people into cycling.

Ricky's been to Blackpool to find out more...


"Blackpool in the north of England is the country's most popular resort.

Over 10 million people travel there each year to enjoy the rides, the beach and the bright street lights.

It's easy to rent a bike
It's easy to rent a bike

The seaside town is well known as a hotspot for fun, but it could soon be established as the cycling capital of England too.

Last year, the government announced plans to create 11 new cycling towns, including Shrewsbury, Cambridge and Blackpool.

So what is a cycling town? Well, it basically means a large area receives extra cash from the government to spend on cycling projects. The plan is to make cycling a real alternative to using the car and other types of transport.

Blackpool has spent the money on a new rent-a-bike scheme. Similar schemes already exists in other countries, like France and the Netherlands.

Bike rentals

On the beach front in Blackpool, and in the nearby parks, tourists and locals can pick up a bike from a special hub and rent it for the day.

It's not free, it costs around £8 for tourists and around £1 an hour for locals and members.

Check out the sites on two wheels
Check out the sites on two wheels

Blackpool has 50 of these bikes at the moment and they hope to raise it to 500 next year, which would mean it has the biggest rent-a-bike scheme in the UK.

The council in Blackpool hopes the bikes will help keep people fit and active.

They're not worried about the bikes being vandalised or stolen and so far nothing like that has happened.

I tried some of the pink and yellow bikes out for myself this week with a group of children from a nearby school. They loved the idea of renting a bike and whizzing around the promenade for a couple of hours.

Many of them thought it was a good way of spending more time outside and even making activities with the family that little bit more fun.

Despite the rubbish weather (it didn't stop raining when I was in Blackpool, making filming this story a nightmare!), experts hope Blackpool will become just as famous for its bikes as it is for the tower and Blackpool rock!"

Ricky