A grant of £750,000 has been awarded by the Scottish Government to one of the UK's largest cycling social enterprises to promote cycling in Edinburgh.
The Bike Station has taken on eight full-time staff to work with people new to cycling and those who are taking it up again as a sustainable transport choice.
Several project partners, including the Edinburgh Bicycle Co-op, have come on board to help raise the number of cyclists using Edinburgh’s roads.
As well as getting out and about talking to cyclists, staff will also be able to hand out free bus passes and discounted membership of the City Car Club. Free loans of Brompton bikes, electric bikes and other bikes, as well as cycle training, will also be available.
Bike Station’s Mark Sydenham told BikeBiz: “Obviously, the main aim is to increase cycling, but there is a large element of public transport and walking work, as well for those who really don’t want to, or can’t cycle. The overall aim is to create 2,500 new cyclists in Edinburgh.”
Despite the funding boost, The Bike Station has made strong progress this year, collecting over 6,000 bicycle donations for refurbishment, compared to around 4,000 last year. The business has also managed to refurbish 38 per cent more bikes this year, placing more than 2,500 bikes in the hands of people who, as Sydenham puts it, 'would not otherwise buy a bicycle.'
The organisation has also secured funding to open a new Bike Station in Perth, the first of its kind outside Edinburgh.