Join the TOUR DE ‘CADENCE’
The last two years have taught us just how important the great outdoors is and just how little we know about it.
Cadence Cycling Club, based in locations across East Sussex and West Sussex, has set out to create a cycling club with hubs/cafes across the South Downs Way, open to all and operating across all seasons. Connecting outdoor-loving communities to support a more sustainable way of living, Cadence provides a base for exploration and a place to meet and refuel.
We spoke to owners Roger Myall and Matthew Jackson about how they turned an idea into a community, with Locate East Sussex supporting its journey to make East Sussex a distinctive place to live and work.
Who are Cadence?
A start-up company with cycling hubs across West and East Sussex, Cadence provides e-bike hire, tours, and repairs alongside its delicious cafe facilities, including their cyclist themed toasties and bespoke coffee blend.
‘We are trying to build a community that enjoys being active together,’ Matthew said, ‘our hubs do not just attract cyclists, but walkers, horse riders and local residents. We are an inclusive company that wants to open up East Sussex and the South Downs for anyone to explore, with no restrictions because of age or ability.’ Encouraging visitors to ditch their cars, Cadence wants to create a more sustainable way to explore the best of the Sussex Countryside.
East Sussex hosts a variety of welcoming villages and inspiring views across the area, and it doesn’t come as a surprise that Roger and Matthew felt that there was an opportunity. As keen cyclists, they saw how people were able to responsibly enjoy the great outdoors as well improve their health and fitness. ‘I think I’ve seen more of our area now than any time before 2020,’ Roger said, ‘and I don’t think we could go back to what we have been doing before without making things better.’
In April 2020, with facilities closed and miles of beautiful countryside, the nation took to the outdoors in a whole new way and the duo realised that the South Downs was missing its chance to open the countryside to more wide-ranging and sustainable activities. ‘We saw that there wasn’t an established network of cycling routes for those less confident,’ Roger said, ‘Many pubs and tea rooms were closed, public facilities difficult to come by, and even freshwater!’
Experienced in running Sporta Group, a commercial services company in the sports industry, they knew their expertise could bring Cadence to life.
Opening up the South Downs for a new generation, the company has already established four hubs through their signature shipping container designs (‘easy to move and establish’), whilst offering a wide selection of bikes including the latest models from Hastings-based Whyte Bikes. Not stopping there, Cadence has also created connections with local farmers and campsites for their visitors and collaborated with local brands such as Long Man Brewery and Liquid Spirit Coffee Roasters.
Cadence contacted Adam Berger, business manager at Locate East Sussex, where he advised Cadence about different funding opportunities available in East Sussex for their future growth. Adam was also able to support Cadence to build on their local networks and connections with local authorities, aiding Cadence’s growth.
Great cycling, great coffee, great food, and great people
Cadence’s name comes from the importance of rhythm and movement, that to ride a bike is not just about turning the pedals but how you turn them. It is the same for Cadence; building a community is essential for their business to develop and expand. ‘The company is always evolving,’ Roger added, ‘taking ideas and making them come to life. Our community is the glue that knits the hubs together.’
‘2021 was the year that we have been proving and innovating the Cadence concept. We have been refining our hubs to make our offer better not only for our customers but for our employees as well. We have some really good people, passionate and great at what they do.’ Already hiring over 30+ employees, the company has been planning to set up additional hubs, including a hub that will serve visitors to Beachy Head, Eastbourne.
As Cadence grows, so does the community, recently taking residence at Devonshire Quarter, Eastbourne, and is looking to introduce mobile rental units for other events and planning meetups across all their sites in Eastbourne, Litlington, and their West Sussex sites (Truleigh Hill, Upwaltham, Deers Leap). They had recently hosted their first event, Cadence Long Fest, with support from Long Man Brewery, offering live music, hotdogs and a night to remember.
The future of Cadence is bright, and we cannot wait to see what they do next.