CYCLING is leading the way in proving that all women can enjoy sport in Cheshire, no matter what their size, age or ability.

Sport England has launched the national This Girl Can campaign to celebrate and promote ordinary women being active, and British Cycling's Breeze Network is one of the projects making this happen.

Sport England research highlighted that two million fewer women are participating in sport than men, despite 75 per cent of women aged between 14 and 40 saying they would like to do more.

This Girl Can is a campaign that uses ordinary women as its role models who appear in TV and billboard adverts with with no airbrushing or flattering editing.

Cycling is one of the featured sports with a 22-year-old Londoner called Grace who's slogan is 'I'm slow but I'm lapping everyone on the couch'.

Anne Boyd, chief executive of Active Cheshire, which is based at Gadbrook Park, in Northwich, said: "It's all about targeting long term behavioural change and reaching real women.

"Let's help break habits one step at a time – that's more powerful and more lasting."

Active Cheshire, which has its headquarters at Gadbrook Park, in Northwich, has invested in the Breeze network in the county, which offers free social bike rides for women.

Anne joined Breeze riders and Cheshire West and Chester Council (CWAC) leaders in welcoming Jennie Price, chief executive of Sport England, to the area.

Sara Braidwood, Breeze co-ordinator for Cheshire, said: "When she arrived she was greeted by Cllr Mike Jones, Cllr Stuart Parker, Active Cheshire and 12 women on their bikes – she was absolutely overwhelmed."

Anne said: "She was really impressed to see This Girl Can brought to life."

Jennie also saw CWAC's new £15 million Ellesmere Port Sport and Leisure Village on her visit and heard about Memorial Court in Northwich.

Cllr Jones said: "I'm so proud of the quality and range of local initiatives we have within the borough.

"It is vital to showcase these to funding decision-makers like Jennie to secure future investment."

Anne said: "It was a privilege to welcome Jennie to our borough.

"She was truly overwhelmed by the new facility and the welcome given to her by 'real' local women wanting to improve their lives."

n Two Breeze bike rides are coming up in Northwich. The first is a five-mile ride around Marbury Park and takes place at 11am on Sunday, February 8. The second is a 13-mile ride around the country lanes of Anderton, Comberbach, Antrobus and Great Budworth and starts at 11am at Marbury Country Park on Sunday, February 15. For more information visit