A family cycle ride took place around the Dengie marshes to welcome in the New Year.

The New Year’s Day Icycle Ride, where riders could take either a ten or 12-mile route, started from St Leonard’s Church, in Station Road, Southminster.

Participants wrapped up warm to tackle the route, guaranteed to blow New Year cobwebs away, on a variety of bikes, including a Penny Farthing.

Cyclists travelled through Burnham and onto the marshes, before returning to Southminster.

Organiser Mike Bikhazi, 60, of Burnham Road, said: “It went very well indeed, there was a good turn out of about 100 adults.

“Some had come from quite long distances like Colchester or Clacton.

“It varies each year, depending on the weather, we have had lows of 70 people.

“There were quite a few families with kids as well.”

The ninth Icycle ride raised around £300 towards collecting money for a feasibility study for a cycle highway linking Burnham, Southminster and further out into the Dengie.

Money additionally goes towards providing cycling skills in schools.

Mr Bikhazi said: “We spend a little bit on cycling education in schools, it’s a long term thing, we want people to be able to cycle safely on the roads and schools are leaving it off the curriculum.”

He described the atmosphere of the ride as one of community spirit.

He said: “There was a nice atmosphere.

“A mother and son came from Burnham, it was the son’s first time and he was going to give up, so someone came back from the main group and cycled with him.

“That’s the spirit of it really, people help each other out and encourage them and they grow in stamina and stature.

“The route is peaceful, it’s a lovely way to welcome in the New Year.”