The Wirral Bikeathon Charity Cycle Event is 21st May 2023.
The Wirral Bikeathon is an annual charity cycling event held in May or June on the northern part of the Wirral peninsula. This year it’s charity of focus is UTS Live Well Foundation (Hoylake) and riders are asked to support this local charity.
About Wirral Bikeathon
So what’s it like to cycle the Wirral Bikeathon? In short, fun. If you haven’t participated in a charity bike ride before, it may be quite daunting at first but before you decide that it’s too hard for you, please take a moment to re-consider.
First consider why you are reading this. There are many reasons for entering the Bikeathon, in memory of a loved one, to raise money for charity, as part of a fitness campaign or simply to have fun.
The Bikeathon isn’t a difficult event, 13-miles isn’t too far and the Wirral is pretty flat. Many cyclists decide to complete the first half of the route and leave the second part. However, if you’ve followed our Guide on How to Prepare for a Charity Bike Ride and have been doing a number of practice rides, you’ll probably want to keep going and complete the full 26-mile route.
There’s something quite special about cycling alongside other cyclists, whether they’re friends or simply fellow cyclists. Many cyclists wear the free t-shirt and the sight of so many people supporting a local charity is quite something to behold.
For more experienced cyclists, the Wirral Bikeathon won’t provide much of a cycling challenge, the distance isn’t far (26-miles) and the elevation gain is minimal at less than 1,500ft. However, as an experienced cyclist myself, I still thoroughly enjoy this event and have taken part pretty much every year since 2005.
If you are reasonably fit, then you could probably just turn up and ride the Bikeathon route. However, don’t take this for granted and ensure you are physically fit enough for this ride. In the same vein as ensuring your body is prepared, you should also ensure your bike is equipped for the charity ride. There are some tips on the previously suggested article (How to Prepare for a Charity Bike Event) but if you are looking to buy a new bike, try these bike reviews, Eurobike XC700 road bike and Eurobike XC700 road bike.
Wirral Bikeathon for Charity
For many years, the Wirral Bikeathon supported Bloodwise (the new name of Leukaemia & Lymphoma Research), who’s aim is to beat blood cancers, but the charity of choice is now UTS Live Well Foundation (Hoylake). The Wirral Bikeathon event was first established in 1999 and is now one of the most popular Bikeathon rides. Other Bikeathon’s include; London Bikeathon, Southend Bikeathon, Woking Bikeathon, Wokingham Bikeathon, Grimsby Bikeathon, Bristol Bikeathon, Vyrnwy Bikeathon, Rugby & Coventry Bikeathon, Scottish Bikeathon, North Wales Coast Bikeathon, Bath Bikeathon, Humber Bridge Bikeathon and Wakefield Bikeathon.
Money raised for this fantastic cause, goes towards much needed research and has surpassed £970,000 since being established in 1999, with 2015 being one of the best ever results with £52,000 being raised by the 1,400 participants. Over the years, over 200,000 Wirral cyclists have taken part and organisers are seeking to pass the £1million mark.
Whilst the event has helped to raise a lot of money towards this great cause, none of the entry goes to the charity. It is used to cover the cost of printing, postage, T-shirts and medals. My personal opinion is that this shouldn’t be included in the entry fee, and thus raising even more money for charity.
Riders can enter via the Wirral Bikeathon website [www.wirralbikeathon.com] or simply turn-up on the day. Cyclists who want to leave it to the last minute pay an entrance fee of £25.00 (Children: £5.00) with those pre-registering paying £20.00 (Children under 16: £5.00). When you sign-up (before the day) you will receive an entry pack which will include an Official Bikeathon T-shirt, rider’s number and most importantly, a sponsor form. Everyone who completes the bike ride receives a special commemorative medal. Those who register on the day, also receive an event t-shirt and medal.
|Date:||May 21, 2023||Price:||£20|
|Event:||Sports Event||Start Time:||09:00 am|
|Distance:||13 or 26 miles||Feed Stations:||Every 7 miles|
|Climbing:||400ft, 850ft||Ride Profile:||minor roads, woodland paths|
|Location:||Arrowe Park, Arrowe Park Road, Wirral, Merseyside, CH49 5LW|
Wirral Bikeathon Route & Map
This interactive route map of the Wirral Bikeathon from RidewithGPS allows you to ride the route before you even get on your bike. Starting from Arrowe Park, move your computer’s mouse along the route to see the roads and paths or elevation. Use the + and – on the map to zoom in and out for more detail.
Wirral Bikeathon Route Map
The Bikeathon route can be done as one circuit of 13 miles or a figure-of-eight route which covers approximately 26 miles (see map). The route is across scenic paths, woodland tracks and minor roads. As this is on the Wirral and part of the route is along the coast, elevation is minimal and thus suitable for cyclists of all experience. The lowest level is 4m, which is along North Parade in Hoylake, and the highest a mere 100m as you cycle out of Irby Village. This is however on the second circuit so some riders may not experience this.
As the route takes in woodland paths, the track can get quite muddy when it rains (as it did in 2011 & 2012). However, I’ve seen road race bikes cope so tri-cross, hybrids and commuter bikes should manage fine. Personally, I do the circuit on a hardtail mountain bike so the woodland paths are fine, whatever the weather conditions, I’m just slower than the road bikes on the roads. But hey, it’s not a race!
Wirral Bikeathon Route
Route : Circuit 1 – Part A
- Cycle thru Arrowe Park, following Signs and Stewards directions
- Surface is woodland path so may be muddy if wet
- Once thru Arrowe Park, turn left onto Arrowe Brook Road and then immediately left onto Arrowe Brook Lane
- Continue along Arrowe Brook Lane until you come to a roundabout, cycle straight over and alongside the Irby Mill pub (no stopping!)
- You’re now on Hillbank Road, on which you should continue for a few miles
- Cycle passed the entrance to Royden Park and left onto Montgomery Hill
- There is a slight incline here so change gear and keep going
- Eventually you’ll come to quite a steep decline, which may not be suitable for young children who are less experienced cyclists. The first rule for all cyclists here is to test your brakes
- At the bottom of Montgomery Hill, cross the roundabout onto Caldy Road
- After 200 yds, turn left onto Croft Drive East
- Follow the road until you turn left onto Croft Drive and then right onto the Wirral Way
- At the end of the Wirral Way turn left onto Grange Road, which becomes Meols Drive
- After one mile, turn left at the roundabout onto The King’s Gap and at the end of the road, turn right onto North Parade
- North Parade becomes Meols Parade
- At the end of Meols Parade you’ll reach Checkpoint 1
- Well done, you’ve completed Part A
Route : Circuit 1 – Part B
- Turn right onto Bennett’s Lane
- At the T-junction, turn left onto Park Road, which becomes Park Lane and then Carr Lane
- You will come to a Railway Crossing, as always, cross with extreme care (safety stewards are in attendance)
- At the end of Carr Lane, turn left onto Carr House Lane
- At the T-junction, turn right onto Millhouse Lane
- After 50 yds, go straight on at the traffic lights onto Saughall Road
- Eventually, Saughall Road meets Saughall Massie Road, turn left and up the slight incline
- After 750 yds, turn right onto Girtrell Road
- At the bottom of Girtrell Road, go straight ahead onto a path, being careful of any pedestrians
- The short path leads to Wood Lane but turn left onto Cortsway
- At the end of Cortsway you’ll reach Greasby Road, using the pedestrian crossing, you straight over the road
- This next section is a woodland pathway and leads back to Arrowe Park
- At the end of the path, cross the road at the pedestrian crossing
- Follow the path thru Arrowe Park until you reach an incline
- You’re nearly there so one last effort
- At the top of the incline follow the stewards directions until to reach the start/finish point
- Congratulations, you’ve done it.
Route : Circuit 2 – Part A
- Set off along the same path as for Circuit 1
- When directed, via towards the left for circuit 2 as circuit 1 goes right
- As per Circuit 1, this is woodland path and so may be muddy if it’s wet
- At the end of the path, turn right onto Thingwall Road, towards Irby Village
- Cycle thru Irby and turn left at the T-junction onto Irby Road
- This road climbs slightly until it levels out after around one mile
- At the end of Irby Road, turn right onto Pensby Road then immediate left onto Whitfield Lane
- This becomes Milner Road, at the end of which, turn right onto Barnston Road
- Eventually you’ll come to a large roundabout, at which turn left onto Chester Road
- After about one mile, turn left onto Parkgate Lane, towards Thornton Hough
- At Thornton Hall Hotel, turn left onto Neston Road
- This section ends at Smithy Hill
Route : Circuit 2 – Part B
- At the top of Smithy Hill, turn left onto Manor Road
- After a mile or so, turn right onto Talbot Avenue
- This is a straight, flat road, at the end of which, turn right onto Brimstage Road
- This is a difficult junction so take extra care
- Follow the road until you reach Green Bank on your left, and then turn left onto Brimstage Lane
- Brimstage Lane eventually becomes Red Hill Road
- These are narrow country lanes so be extra mindful of cars coming in the opposite direction
- At the roundabout, take the right turn onto Lever Causeway
- Little Storeton Lane is a sharp left turn but one that is well marshalled
- After a short while, turn sharp right onto Landican Lane
- This is quite a long, winding road that runs alongside the M53
- Eventually it goes underneath it and continues beyond
- Stay on Landican Lane until it reaches Arrowe Park Road
- At the entrance to Arrowe Park, turn left into the Park
- Follow the path through the car park and on to the start/finish
- Well done, great effort, you’ve now completed both circuits
Wirral Bikeathon FAQs
Do you have a question about the Wirral Bikeathon? Simply add it to the Comment Box below and we’ll reply as soon as we have the answer. In the meantime, here are a few questions we’ve been asked already.
When is the Wirral Bikeathon 2023?
The Wirral Bikeathon is on 21st May 2023.
What is the Wirral Bikeathon?
The Wirral Bikeathon is an annual charity cycling event held in May or June on the northern part of the Wirral peninsula.
What type of bike can I use?
In short, any type of bike can be used. So far, we’ve seen road bikes, mountain bikes, hybrid bikes, commuter bikes, kids bikes, recumbent bikes, tandem bikes and even a unicycle! However, if the weather is wet, which is has been in a few of the more recent events, you may want to consider a bike with wider tyres as the Arrowe Park sections can be quite muddy.
How far is the Wirral Bikeathon?
The Bikeathon route is a figure of eight, which means that the ride starts and finishes in the same place, twice. The first section is 13 miles, with the second section the same distance, making the total route 28 miles.
How long does it take to cycle the Wirral Bikeathon route?
It very much depends on the cyclist, and how fit you are. An experienced cyclist with good fitness levels will take around an hour for each loop. However, most cyclists will take somewhere between 1.5 to 2 hours for each loop. If you are cycling with children, plan to take a little longer so not to rush them.
Do I have to cycle the full route?
No. You can choose to cycle the first circuit and no more or complete both circuits if you’re feeling confident on completing the full 28 mile distance.
What are the roads like?
Most of the Wirral Bikeathon route is on the main roads, albeit the quieter ones. The route does go through Arrowe Park, both along the hard paths and the soft woodland area. If the weather is wet, these softer paths can get quite muddy so take care and slow down.