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Cycle Buddies Trish & Jo

Cycle Buddies - Online Improvements

Expression of Interests wanted to develop online service


London Cycling Campaign’s Cycle Buddies project has been a successful volunteer led scheme that has helped many Londoners to start cycling. Newer cyclists are matched up with experienced riders to help build confidence, find better routes or even simply for some company on two wheels. This volunteer led scheme was developed over lockdown and grew to cover two thirds of London boroughs, as well as NHS workers. London Cycling Campaign is a charity and we have some funding in place for this project.

We want to take this to the next stage and need a better way of using technology to support the user journey and to match people up. We are looking for a developer to help us create an online platform that helps users find out more about the project, register and match them up with a cycle buddy.

We are open to the type of on-line platform used and the matching database that sits behind it. What we want is to be able to reach as many different people as possible and for the service to be accessible to the majority of Londoners.

We’d like something that can be developed relatively quickly and go live this summer or in early autumn. Below is the scope we have outlined.

If you are interested in bidding for this work then please provide a short expression of interest of no more then 2 sides of A4. Please cover the following items:-

  • Name and contact details
  • Understanding of the brief
  • Approach to this project
  • Examples of past work (Links to external sites are allowed to keep to response short)
  • Timescales
  • Budget
  • Any questions

Deadline – 14:00 4 July 2022

We will then shortlist and invite the successful bids to a short meeting before selecting a preferred supplier.

Please send your response to cyclingprojects@lcc.org.uk 

Cycle Buddy matching platform brief

Cycle Buddies is LCC’s leading behaviour change project. It was setup by LCC volunteers during lockdown in Wandsworth and we expanded across London. The project has been a great success and has so far matched over 450 people and we think there is potential for it to be scaled up and help 1000s per year.

One of the things holding back this development is the sign up and matching processes for people wanting help (participants) and people wanting to help (volunteers). We currently have a quite manual system using google sheets and the user journey could be vastly improved.

We have split the project up into three areas
– Volunteer recruitment
– Participant recruitment
– Development of a matching platform /database

This brief is for the development of the matching platform.

To have a platform that matches participants (people who want support to cycle more) with helper buddies (LCC volunteers who are experienced urban cyclists). The main matching criteria is by location – this will predominantly be the participant’s home but could be another location like work.

Personal safety is very important so we do not want to give away people’s home address or location away. We always advise people to meet at a nearby landmark eg a tube station.

We also want to match up people on other non-geographic criteria such as gender (so women can request a female buddy), disability (people with experience / knowledge of cycling with a disability) or LGBTQ+ (people who are willing to make the session a safe space for participants who identify as being in this group). We may want to add other similar criteria in the future.

The platform needs to be engaging and supportive with an objective to provide a clear pathway for participants to become regular cyclists. This needs to be monitored and evaluated as part of the platform’s functions.

The platform must also provide the functionality of advising on cycle training options and bike maintenance or where to hire or borrow bikes as part of the user journey. This could be by linking to information on the LCC website. The content is outside of the scope of this project and will be supplied by LCC separately.

We would like to see some consideration as to how this platform sits alongside our existing website and the two link to each other

Within the platform there will be two main user journeys.
1. Participant journey
2. Helper buddy journey

Within the participant sign up process we will ask for the following information
• Contact details
• Diversity questions
• Ability
• Goal setting
• Request specific buddy (female, disabled etc.)
• Do they own a bike and is the bike roadworthy
• Link to welcome webinar
• Disclaimer to tick
• LCC sign up to our newsletter/3 months free membership

Within the sign up process for volunteer helper buddies we will ask for the following information
• Contact details
• Diversity questions
• Experience
• Availability
• Link to sign up to LCC helper buddy training pack
• A list of what we expect from a helper buddy

Cycle Trainers (Optional or phase 2)

We would also like to provide a version of the helper buddy that is a local freelance cycle trainer. This is so a participant can find and arrange their own cycle training sessions if none are available through their local councils. The provision of adult cycle training is under financial pressure and may not be available all year round.

We would the service to facilitate a participant finding a cycle trainer. Once contact has been established then arrangements can be made outside of this service. We’re seeing payment for services outside of the scope of this project at this phase but could be this could be an option at a later stage.

Matching tool

After the sign up process they can activate their profile and they will be directed to the matching tool. We envisage this as being a map with icons showing rough locations on buddy profiles in their area from which they can then select one. (If there is a different way of doing the matching we are happy to explore other ideas).

Only the helper buddy icons appear on the map, the participants can then initiate contact by pressing a message function. A map function may not work well on mobile so we are open to alternatives.

They will then organise their ride meet up through an in-platform messaging system which does not allow contact details to be shared. If they want to share details this will be done in person.

Cycle activity

After they have done their ride they will get a prompt which asks them if they have completed the buddy experience. It will then ask them to rate their buddy.


They then get given questions to see how they are doing a few times after the ride, and then after 3 months, which tells us if they are still cycling.


The service should match LCC’s existing branding and it should be clear that this is an LCC service.

Scoping Meeting

We would like to include a scoping meeting at the start of the project so this should be costed in.