Brompton Bike Hire has launched a crowdfunding drive to help produce 1,000 hire bikes for use by NHS workers to help them get to hospitals during the coronavirus pandemic.
A fortnight ago, the West London-based brand started making its hire bikes available for free to NHS key workers, and has so far received more than 500 applications.
Now, it has launched a Wheels for Heroes campaign with the aim of making a further 1,000 bikes for use by NHS staff, and has pledged up to £100,000 of production costs towards the initiative.
Brompton stresses that the bikes will be produced for below cost price and that it will make no profit on the NHS bikes nor on funds raised via Crowdfunder, where people can donate sums of £10 and above towards the campaign.
The bikes, which will supplement the existing Brompton hire fleet, will be made available to hire for free by NHS staff for as long as lockdown restrictions remain in force.
Brompton will be freeing up space currently dedicated to commercial production at its factory in Greenford, West London, despite continuing to see high demand for its bikes.
Among other things, the initiative aims to help NHS staff avoid crowded public transport and thereby reduce the potential spread of coronavirus.
Rewards on offer to people supporting the crowdfunding campaign include naming bikes as well as free bike hire, and corporate packages are also available.
Brompton Bike Hire says that in the longer term, once the current crisis is over, the bikes will still be allocated for use by people working with in the NHS with a nominal maintenance fee of £1 per hire once lockdown restrictions have ended.
Some of the bikes will also be donated to hospitals for use by graduate doctors and nurses.
Brompton Bike Hire managing director, Julian Scriven, said: “The take-up of our initial offer of bikes to the NHS has been truly incredible and far beyond our expectations.
“It has been fantastic to be able to help in a small way and the feedback from the NHS staff has been unexpected and frankly heartwarming.
“We are delighted to see so many key workers able to get to work safely. Now, we want to do more.
“Circumstances pending, we will aim to build up to an additional 1,000 bikes dedicated for the NHS. We will provide dedicated production space at our London factory and commit production and staff expertise equating to an investment of up to £100,000, but we are calling on the Brompton community and on our wider community to get involved where they can.
“Any support no matter how small (or large) will make a huge difference to us being able to support the NHS.”
He added: “Please join our Crowdfunder, and as well as helping support these key workers with bikes, you’ll also get some great rewards.”
One NHS worker who has already benefited from Brompton’s drive to support staff is Zoe Griffin, chief cardiac physiologist at St Barts in London, who received her hire bike last week.
She said: “Since the COVID crisis started my biggest fear was my travel to work on the tube, due to the risk of getting an infection from there.
“The roads are quiet and I’m managing to exercise before and after a busy day of work”.
Here are details of the rewards available to people donating to the Crowdfunder campaign:
£10+ Round of Applause – A virtual high five from us all with a video thanks from our CEO.
£25+ Round of Drinks – Signed letter of thanks from our CEO and a set of our city changing stickers (not available anywhere else)
£75+ Round of Golf – Signed letter of thanks from our CEO and city changing stickers and 3 days of free bike hire inc free membership (worth £35.50)
£250+ Wheels On the Bikes Go Round and Round – A bike named after you and a place on our factory wall of fame, plus signed letter of thanks from the CEO, city changing stickers and 3 days of free bike hire inc membership worth £35.50
£4,000+ Heroes of the Hour – Temporary sponsorship of a dock (name/logo on) and 5 memberships with 5 free hire days (worth £212.50) and name on factory hall of fame & name 5 bikes
£7,500+ Not All Heroes Wear Capes – Temporary sponsorship of a dock (name/logo on) and factory tour for 10 people & 10 memberships with 5 free hire days (worth £285) and name on factory wall of fame and name 10 of the bikes
£15,000+ Keys to the City – factory tour and cycle ride with our CEO for 10 people and temporary sponsorship of 5 docks (name/logo on) and 20 memberships with 5 free hire days (worth £850) and name on factory wall of fame and name 20 of the bikes.
Simon joined road.cc as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.