For one weekend every year central London is closed, allowing a flurry of cyclists to take to the streets, in Britain’s biggest festival of cycling.

The Prudential Ride London – developed to commemorate the 2012 Olympics –is cancelled this year due to coronavirus, but through a virtual event cyclists can still get pedalling.

On August 15-16 (the would-be weekend of the race), riders of all ages and abilities can sign up to cycle a variety of distances.

Participants from anywhere in the world can choose from either 19, 46 or 100-mile rides, and track their progress on the Ride London app.

There is also a freecycle event, allowing people to join on anything self-propelled – including bikes, push scooters, skateboards, roller skates and wheelchairs.

Every year, a bonus for participants is that they can raise funds for a charity of their choice.

Paul’s Cancer Support Centre, in Battersea, is one charity calling on the community to shift into gear.

The charity helps people and their families affected by cancer, through their centre in York Road and home visiting service.

Your Local Guardian:

Ride for Paul's Cancer Support Centre

Katy Cox, Interim Chief Executive, says:

“We are very grateful that the Prudential RideLondon event is taking place and we would love to see as many people as possible get involved for Paul’s Cancer Support Centre.”

“By taking part you will be helping fund much-needed assistance for people going through cancer, their friends, and families. It’s going to be a great weekend of activity and money raised will make such a difference.”

Participants who wish to ride for Paul’s Cancer Support Centre, or any other charity, can register in advance and select their challenge here.