A WOMAN from Northwood is named in Cycling UK’s 100 Women in Cycling, its sixth annual list celebrating inspirational women in the sport and activity.

Alia Merali was recognised for her work encouraging other women to get on their bikes and improve equality and diversity in cycling.

The list of 100 is recognised for significant achievements promoting women’s cycling.

It celebrates their outstanding work, whether that’s sporting or industry accolades, spreading the word as an influencer, or through grassroots campaigning and community support.

The list this year includes household names from the sport, such as Tour de France Femmes winner and Road World Champion Annemiek van Vleuten.

It also shines a spotlight on other inspirational figures like poet Caroline Burrows who uses her medium to tell stories about cycling and climate activist Jessie Stevens, who was 17 when she cycled from Dartmoor to Glasgow for COP26.

After being taught to cycle by her father at an early age, Alia Merali, 39, found cycling one of the easiest ways to get round when she was living in Barcelona.

Recently she's helped to establish Evolve, the cycle network for Muslim women which allowed her to combine her passion of teaching with cycling.

“The joy I've seen on faces after someone either learning how to ride, or mastering a skill, or just getting out for a group ride and completing a challenging route, keeps me going,” she said.

“I think cycling is a permanent part of my life that keeps evolving.”