Shoppers and weekend strollers will get a rude awakening when more than 200 naked cyclists take to the streets.

Brighton's third World Naked Bike Ride takes place on Saturday.

Riders will bare all to highlight their vulnerability on the roads and to protest against oil dependency and car culture.

The cyclists will be encouraged to display the naked truth of their message by daubing their bodies with slogans in body paint as they go on a sightseeing tour of Brighton.

Bike ride co-ordinator Duncan Blinkhorn said: "Oil prices are really hitting people where it hurts at the moment and it is another sign that things need to change.

"We really want to get our point across, but if you can give a serious message in a fun way then why not?"

The ride will pass a number of Brighton and Hove landmarks including the Royal Pavilion, Brighton Pier, Hove Lawns, the Lanes and Kemp Town. Organiser Nick Sayers said riding naked was just as comfortable as riding clothed.

He said: "My girlfriend and I were both worried about riding naked when we first did it in 2005, but it's not much different to cycling wearing clothes."

Cyclists do not have to be completely naked, with an event dress code of as bare as you dare'. For anyone shy about revealing all, organisers said wigs and sunglasses are the way to go. Mr Sayers said: "It's amazing what a wig and dark glasses can do.

One year my girlfriend rode right past me wearing a long wig and I didn't recognise her at all."

This is the first year full public nudity will be allowed by law, meaning problems with the police should be a thing of the past.

Mr Duncan said the reception the ride receives in Brighton and Hove had always been positive, with one or two raised eyebrows being the worst reaction.

He said: "We are always really well received. It's a big step for people to make themselves feel vulnerable and this takes the idea to its extreme limit. I think people respond to that."

This year's bike ride will finish with a picnic on Brighton's naturist beach before the ride home.

The ride is part of an international campaign with events in other major British cities and cities around the world during the summer.


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