Recycling to allow all to enjoy cycling

Published on: 02 Feb 2016

HAVE you got some old bikes your children have outgrown? Here’s your chance to pass them on to youngsters who would love their own set of two wheels.
A scheme to recycle cycles is being tried out in South Gloucestershire – and the first children to benefit are delighted.
The council’s road safety team has been collected unwanted bikes from schools and, with the backing of recycling contractor Suez, from Sort It centres.
Qualified bike mechanics within the council’s cycle training team then refurbish and make the bikes roadworthy, before they are redistributed through schools to people in the community.
Recipients then have the chance to join free cycle safety training along with their classmates.
About 25 bikes have been gathered in so far and the target is 50 by  the end of March, so if you can help, please contact cycle.training@southglos.gov.uk
The team would like schools to get involved both in collecting bikes and recommending families who might benefit from the scheme, which is known as Bikeability Recycled and is funded by the Department for Transport.
Connie Starkie, 7, a pupil at Elm Park Primary in Winterbourne and one of the first to receive a bike, said:  “I really love my new bike! I did have a smaller one before but that one had stabilisers on it. One of the Bikeability instructors gave me some tips for my new bike and will be coming back to teach me how to ride it without using stabilisers.”
Councillor Colin Hunt, who leads on transport at the local authority, said: “All schools in South Gloucestershire are offered free Bikeability cycle training by us through their school, however sometimes we are not able to provide this service to all children because they do not have their own bike. By refurbishing and redistributing these bikes to local school pupils we are hoping that more people take part in our cycle training.
“We have seen a huge increase in cycling in South Gloucestershire and it is important that young people are taught to cycle safely and with consideration for other road users.”
Bikeability courses improve students’ on-road riding abilities, and aim to make them more road aware. To get their Bikeability award, students are instructed on how to ride their bikes to the government-approved National Standard for Cycle Training, which sets out the training and skills essential for making cycling trips on roads. Courses are available during school time and also during the school holidays.

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