The Tweed Run is London’s best-dressed annual cycling event. Launched in 2009, the run now attracts hundreds of riders who descend on the capital each spring to ride and picnic in their finest tweed.
This year, the event will be held on Saturday the 6th of May, and while it’s too late to take part, there’s no reason why you can’t don your best tweed to watch the riders and perhaps join in with the ‘après cycle’ festivities.
Here’s our handy guide to help you look your best and make the most of a wonderfully vintage day out.
Advice for riders
With prizes for the best bicycle, best-dressed rider and finest moustache, it’s worth planning your Tweed Run wardrobe with care.
Tweed is a comfortable fabric, but since the route takes in 12 miles of London landmarks, to avoid the horrors of chafe, it’s probably a good idea to go with lined trousers.
Spring weather is notoriously unpredictable too. Back in 2014 temperatures reached 23 degrees on the day of the run. Biking blogger Velo City Girl, who took part, wore a tweed jacket rather than a full suit. She says:
“I doff my cap to those who persevered in full tweed, but I suspect I would have baked in Central London with the suit I had in mind!”
Wearing layers is a good idea because it allows you to adjust your wardrobe to match changing weather conditions.
The exact route isn’t announced until one week prior to the event, but we do know that this year’s Tweed Run sets off from Northampton Road at 11am.
If this year’s route is anything like last year’s it’s likely to pass many of the city’s famous tourist hotspots. Good places to watch the race may well include Buckingham Palace, the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye or the Natural History Museum.
The ride finishes at Spa Fields in Clerkenwell where you’ll be able to watch the vintage cyclists arriving from 4pm until about 6pm.
“Tweed jackets are great to wear out for a smart casual occasion. They are fashionable, and can be worn with almost anything.”
Pack a picnic
The Tweed Run features a tea break and a picnic stop for an anticipated 500 cyclists.
As a non-participant, licensing restrictions mean you won’t be able to join friends or family in the area reserved for registered cyclists, but that doesn’t mean you can’t bring your own picnic to the event – supporters often set out their blankets close by. The Foodie Travel Guide says:
“You’ll see colourful picnic blankets, wicker hampers, flasks galore, champagne glasses and even the odd candelabra.”
The event’s organisers also advertise a “jolly knees-up” at the end of the day, a ticketed event with a bbq and pop-up refreshment stands. What better excuse to don your finest tweed jacket than for nation’s best-dressed cycling event?
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