Spotlight on a cyclist: Martin Sharman

  1. What is your name, where are you from and how long have you been in Aberdeen (if not local)?

My name is Martin, I grew up in Aberdeen and the Shire and left when I was 18 years old to go explore the world. I ended up finding myself coming back to the city through an unexpected turn of events a couple years back.

  1. How did you get into cycling?

I have always had a bike of sorts in my life, mainly for getting from A-B. I would not class myself as an avid cyclist enthusiast in terms of it being a regular hobby nor me striving for personal stats and Strava titles, but I do enjoy it when I am on a bike.

I had not cycled for quite a while but the Covid-19 situation got me back into it again more recently, and led to the purchase of an eCargo bike for the family.

  1. What kind of cycling do you do?

I mainly use the bike for commuting to work; dropping off, and collecting the children from nursery, and doing everyday journeys to supermarket and town etc. I have two young boys which has given me an opportunity to re-explore the city from a kid’s perspective and cycling them about seemed an obvious option for that… parks and the beach front are always only a 10-20 minute bike ride away!

  1. What type of cycle do you use?

I mainly use the family longtail eCargo bike but do have a small folding bike for when I need a bit of solace.

  1. Where do you cycle usually/any favourite routes? How often?

I love cycling with the kids; the conversations are great, and adventures are many. Our favourite route is anywhere on the paths along the banks of the Don between Seaton park up to Dyce village.

I use the eCargo bike as much as I can, some weeks I am out on it every day and even doing multiple trips; others I just cycle once or twice , on the odd day or two… I do try avoiding car journeys where possible; it’s not always easy… but an ebike does make it easier.

  1. What would you like to see to improve your cycling experience?

Aberdeen is pretty straightforward to navigate when you know how but there are some trouble areas and routes; most can be avoided with a bit of research (Komoot and google maps). Improvements I would like to see just now are just small things like the odd dropped kerb and removal of a bollard/chicane blocking the way on certain routes. Additionally, well thought out joined-up cycle infrastructure would be a huge boost to the city.

  1. Any top tips for someone considering cycling in the area?

Just gets out there! Pick park or coffeeshop or some other local business to support and plan your trip taking quiet, wide roads or routes with dedicated cycle paths; from my experience you’ll be surprised on the number of courteous car drivers there are when you do have to join the carriage way.