Essex Pedal Power Colchester give free bikes and training to 50 children

PUBLISHED: 21 February 2024

Essex Pedal Power Colchester enjoyed one of its busiest weeks to date over the February half term, with around 50 local children receiving free cycle training and a free bike.

The Essex Pedal Power team was delighted to accept the offer of the visitor car park at Colchester Academy as a venue for their training and bike giveaways to the children. Instructors put the children through a range of exciting and fun activities over four days of the school holidays, culminating with confidence-building led rides on local roads. Children who attended the training received a free bike and were provided with a helmet, lock, pump, and lights.

Essex Pedal Power Colchester is one of four projects across the county tasked with giving away free quality bikes to residents living within certain postcode areas. Since May 2023, the project has given away 187 bikes to residents of Greenstead, with the ages of recipients ranging from eight to 76.

Over the coming months, the project will run workshops for residents to learn how to fix their bikes, as well as organise led rides and other cycling activities.

Cllr Natalie Sommers, Portfolio Holder for Communities, said: “This is such a great project. We are always so delighted when we see one of our bikes out on the roads. Hopefully, the children who have benefited this week will be able to find some newfound freedom and head out on adventures together as well as cycle to school.

“What makes the project so special is the volunteer workforce behind the scenes. Seven local people have been working with the project mechanic to assemble each bike in the warehouse in Colchester. We are so proud and grateful to our volunteers. Some started helping out a couple of hours a week and now spend two days beavering away in the workshop and also helping out in the community at Fix It and Giveaway sessions!”

The Essex Pedal Power Colchester team is actively working with the community to create new cycling groups, providing more opportunities to cycle and help people develop social connections through cycling. Training can be offered to anyone who would like to become a ride leader.

The scheme aims to provide a low-cost and sustainable mode of travel, helping Greenstead residents access employment, education opportunities, and key local services. 

Page last reviewed: 21 February 2024


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