Through the streets of your town

Over the past few days Britain has made yet more cycling history by staging the first women's Tour of Britain. It's another clear indication of the unstoppable rise in popularity of women's cycling.

But women's cycling is nothing new of course, as anyone who remembers champions such as Beryl Burton and Eileen Sheridan will know. Their achievements are still rightly seen as extraordinary even by today's standards – especially in light of the crude, heavy equipment they had to use.

Back in the first edition of Simpson (pages 50-63) we spoke of the wonderfully surreal experience of seeing world-class cyclists riding on roads familiar from our Sunday rides. The same euphoric feeling overcame us again when the cream of women's international cycling sped through Kesgrave on stage one of the Women’s Tour, including Olympic road race champion Marianne Vos and runner up Lizzie Armistead, Laura Trott, Danni King, Emma Pooley and European cyclo-cross champion Helen Wyman.

After many years on the fringes, the sport of cycling has now been embraced by the masses. Most people can now name a pro cyclist and we’re delighted that this now applies to women cyclists too. We witnessed many young autograph hunters keen to obtain the signatures of their heroines. Look out for a full account of the Women's Tour in our next edition.