Bike Hub: winning projects announced

£100k prize split between London, York and Darlington

by Dave Atkinson   July 27, 2009  

Bikehub logo

A £100,000 prize fund raised via Bike Hub, a levy on bike and accessory sales, is to be split between three projects which put in applications for their inaugural New Ideas Fund. The winning schemes are Bikeboost from Get Cycling of York; Age Well on Wheels, a scheme by the London Cycling Campaign; and DarloVelo of Darlington.

Get Cycling of York is a community interest company providing cycling programmes and events, and their Bikeboost project is a cycling to work support programme serving the north of England. A Bikeboost officer will link up company management, workplace travel planners, health promotion professionals, local cycle dealers, adult cycle trainers, Cycle to Work scheme providers, the local media and individual employees who wish to take up cycling to work.

Get Cycling MD Chris Hamm said: "This builds on our long experience of cycling to work programmes. We are delighted that our pioneering work has been recognised in this way, and look forward to the challenge.”

Age Well on Wheels was born in 2008, with an over 60's LCC member delivering a small pilot project: Gwen Cook recognised cycling as a great solution to get older people active but older non-cyclists lacked confidence and overestimated the barriers to cycling. Her Age Well on Wheels pilot project was run in Hammersmith and Fulham and provided cycle training tuition with a focus on trainers who had experience working with an older generation.

Cook said: "The project was a huge success: over 40 percent of participants bought bikes and now use them day to day. All participants reported that they felt improvements in confidence, balance, strength in their legs and coordination by the end of their course.

"As a result of this successful bid this project can be expanded across London and we hope, one day, to increase and expand the numbers of people at retirement age who cycle regularly nationwide."

DarloVelo is a Darlington project aiming to get more young women on two wheels. It was created by the Darlington Cycling Campaign, in partnership with Darlington Media Group, and supported by Darlington Borough Council.

It aims to increase cycling levels in Darlington through promotions, virtual hand-holding, long-term loan of female-friendly stylish urban bikes and exchange schemes. A group of young women from Darlington spent time with young women in bike-friendly Bremen, and the Bremen bikers came across to the UK to see at first hand the great strides this Cycling Demonstration Town is making to create a local bicycle culture.

DarloVelo coordinator Richard Grassick said: "We aim to get young women into the habit of every-day cycling.

"Our belief is that, once established in a town with just under 100,000 inhabitants, a critical proportion of visible cyclists will have been reached. Gentle every-day cycling as a cultural phenomenon will be noticed by the wider population. Interest will be rekindled in local bike shops. A new market will be established."