October 20, 2017

How we created the Royds Withy King Extreme Safety Bike

In the lead up to the big day, a group of volunteers from our Oxford office, including  myself, set to work customising our very own bicycle to take pride of place on our stand.

[caption id="attachment_31559" align="alignleft" width="300"] The blank canvas with which we began our masterpiece[/caption]

With the help of Amelia Swan, an artist and volunteer at the Ark-T Centre, this small creative team began brainstorming ideas for the bike. Eventually, we settled on the concept of an Extreme Safety Bike. We decided that this would be appropriate for the aims of the festival, as it would allow us to focus on improving awareness while giving us the freedom to make the bike truly stand out.

As the theme began to gain momentum, Amelia, together with an arsenal of creative materials and equipment, travelled to our office to help put together the bicycle in situ, and turn some of our bright ideas into a reality. It was perhaps of little surprise that the team made something of a slow start initially, given how long their day had been, but it was fantastic to see how they transformed once the cylinders started firing and ideas began to bounce around.

[caption id="attachment_31560" align="alignright" width="300"] The X.S.B begins to take shape[/caption]

As our volunteers continued to invest themselves more and more in the creative spirit, a plethora of neon paint, glowing LEDs, and reflective tape lit up the Oxford boardroom, and the bicycle began to take shape. All in all, the team spent several hours adapting, painting, and coating the bike to ensure that it would be something to remember!

While lawyers are perhaps not best known for their creativity, with Amelia’s encouragement, it was great to see ideas and individual artistry bursting into life.
At The Great British Bike Off’s launch party, I observed the palpable enthusiasm shared for this project by both local charities and businesses alike, and it felt great to bring a taste of that into the office.

The workshop provided a fantastic reminder of the benefits that creativity and teamwork can generate, and it was truly exciting to see my fellow colleagues engaging in a community project, particularly with the knowledge that all of the proceeds are going to a very worthy cause.

[caption id="attachment_31561" align="alignleft" width="225"] Approaching the final hurdle[/caption]

While our Extreme Safety Bike was designed to carry a very serious message about road safety, it also exemplifies how creativity and a sense of community can instil the belief that action can bring about a positive change.

As a participant, I am greatly heartened by the message that Ark-T hopes to drive home with the Great British Bike Off, and I am very grateful that they have been kind enough to share it with some of the wider team in our office.

Going forward, I am excited to be able to show off the bike at the Royds Withy King stand on Saturday 21 October, and I look forward to building on our relationship with the festival in the future.

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