Bristol’s vintage bike festival rides again with a VE Day celebration

Published on 12/02/2020

The Gert Lush vintage bike festival and one of the UK’s premier retro road rides returns to Bristol on Sunday 3 May 2020.

To mark 75 years of peace in Europe, this year’s festival has a VE Day theme and riders are encouraged to ride vintage bikes and wear 1940s costume. The family-friendly event is also a celebration of the eco-friendly, inclusive and cycling-mad city that is Bristol – we all know Gert Lush is Bristolian for excellent!

Cyclists can choose between a 35 mile route and a 65 mile route that both wind their way through the glorious Somerset countryside.

During the ride, cyclists will be transported through time and space, with the immersive experience involving much more than just a cycle ride.

“We want to celebrate the outbreak of peace across Europe on the 75 th anniversary of the end of World War Two,” says event director and founder Patrick Collerton. “As well as an incredible route that takes in the best of Bristol’s beautiful countryside, we have a family-friendly VE street party finale and some extraordinary period treats for riders along the route.”

“We’re also celebrating the history of UK cycling and the craftspeople who created the works of art that we ride,” said Patrick who will be proudly riding his own vintage Dawes Galaxy. Riders can choose to dress in WW2 period costume or retro cycling outfits.

All cyclists are welcome. Patrick explains,

“We’d love people to embrace the theme but we’re very happy for riders to turn up in whatever era bike and kit they prefer. Our only rule is no full carbon bikes!”

As well as two adult rides children can take part in the Babba Lush, a safe ride for youngsters aged between 5 – 9 years old that will enable them to get in on the fun. The Babba Lush is completely free, but all children must be accompanied by an adult.

The Gert Lush is part of a weekend of cycling for Bristol and takes place on the same weekend as Bespoked, the UK’s leading celebration of handmade bicycles.

“Events like The Gert Lush and Bespoked are helping to maintain Bristol’s place as the UK’s leading cycling city,” explains Patrick. “We hope that visitors from around the UK and abroad will travel to Bristol to enjoy Bespoked on the Friday and Saturday and then take to their bikes on Sunday for The Gert Lush.”

More info

Entries and further information about the rides can be found at

The Gert Lush is sponsored by Bristol law firm Barcan + Kirby, Trek Bristol and Bath Ales.

(Photo courtesy of Graham Watts)