A Worcester student has decided to do a naked bike challenge in protest at oil dependency as part of the World Naked Bike Ride (WNBR).
Angus Barry, a second year PPE student, is in charge of publicity of the event at Oxford University, and hopes to encourage a large group of riders to join in. The route, lasting an hour and a half, will take in Magdalen Bridge, Christchurch and Radcliffe Square.
Barry said: “The route will be around central Oxford. A picture by the RadCam is a must I think!
“I think cycling naked past all Oxford’s ancient buildings will be a pretty surreal, but beautiful experience.”
The World Naked Bike Ride started in 2004, and is described as an international clothing-optional bike ride, where participants gather to cycle naked en-masse to “deliver a vision of a cleaner, safer, body-positive world.”
“Bare as you dare” is the event moto, with full or partial nudity heavily encouraged but not mandatory.
In keeping with this, Barry will take part wearing only his birthday suit. He said: “I plan to be fully naked”. Reflecting the Oxford University aspect of the ride, Barry will also bring along his gown and mortarboard “for comedy value.”
He also added: “Being naked really doesn’t have to be sexual, that’s a message we’re really trying to push.”
Barry was keen however to emphasise that “people definitely don’t have to be fully naked to join the ride”.
On taking part in the WNBR, he added: “I chose the idea of a naked bike ride because when I heard about it I felt instinctively embarrassed of being so exposed in such a public setting, but couldn’t think of any proper reason why I should feel like that. So I thought it would be a good plan to challenge myself by doing it.
“The ride itself is intended to be a protest against oil dependency, though obviously through being naked it will hopefully challenge people to think about how we view the human body.“
Since the inaugural WNBR in 2004, the event has expanded to more than 74 cities, in 20 countries, and more than a 1000 people took part in a London event in June. Barry will be organising his event for Trinity term next year.