AUTHOR and cycling expert William Manners will be at The Grove Bookshop, Ilkley on Thursday, July 5 at 7pm to discuss his new book Revolution: How The Bicycle Reinvented Modern Britain.

This event is a rescheduled event which was originally due to take place on June 14.

Published in May the book looks at the Victorian roots of cycling, and how the invention caused major change in Britain, and – ultimately – the world.

Manners delves into the past to illuminate just how much the bicycle transformed the day-to-day lives of men and women. With millions of people experiencing a personalised means of transport for the first time, this truly was revolutionary, and – crucially – available to the common man and woman cheaply.

By bringing the distances between villages and towns within the reach of the population, the cycle opened up Britain’s roads to a new breed of traveller – with all the benefits that that brought. Put simply: the gene pool of the population was widened, and ‘respectable’ behaviours and stiff-upper lips were left at home as people revelled in the freedoms opened up by journeying into the countryside – whether through frequent visits to pubs, scratch bicycle races, or flirting with the daughters of the landladies whose inns they were staying at. It was also a great emancipator of women, from crib, kitchen and convention. And with it came a wave of changes in style, fashion and socialising.

Taking contemporaneous accounts of the machine – from previously unexplored cycling club journals (filled with entertaining and revealing insights into the activities of members) to writings of H.G. Wells – to show its radical effects, Revolution illustrates the major impact that the bicycle had on culture, and how the machine remains a marvel of modern engineering that transformed Britain and, ultimately, the world.

Tickets for the Grove Bookshop launch are £5: 01943609335,