Derwent gears up for first phase of bike recycling project

DERWENT Living and Groundwork Derby and Derbyshire have set off on a mission to recycle old bicycles

The first phase of the project saw six children from Derby travel to Somercotes to mend and transform broken and unwanted bikes. Once complete, the children will be able to keep the cycles they worked on.

The project, which is being funded and managed by housing provider Derwent Living and Groundwork, has two aims - to divert waste from landfill by recycling and reusing bicycles and to provide training, work placements, physical activities and volunteering opportunities for Derwent Living customers and the wider community.

The project also aims to teach children the importance of problem solving skills and of working together as part of a team.

Christine Smith, community regeneration officer at Derwent Living said: “It was great to get started on the project after a lot of planning. The children really enjoyed working on the bikes and I think that they were really motivated knowing that the more hard work they put in to the repairs, the better the result. We are really pleased the initial phase of the project was so successful.

“We are expanding the scheme in July to include a traveling road show trailer, which will help the initiative to reach more of our customers. It really is about making a big impact and the touring workshop is a great way to do this. Derwent Living has donated its mobile unit which will make getting around much easier.”

The mobile workshop has a self sustaining element to it with the aim being to sell repaired bikes to the public.

Funding for the project is also coming from Cycle Derby - a three year project within Derby with a vision to get more people cycling, more safely, more often. The venture aims to be self sufficient after the first year and will work as a social enterprise, feeding the money it makes back into the project.

The initiative will also mean the creation of a number of jobs including a project manager and an assistant working as a trainee on a rolling basis. This may take the form of six monthly apprenticeships aimed at Derwent Living residents.

For more information on the ‘Bike Force – Recycle that Cycle’ initiative
or for details of where the mobile workshop will be visiting over the summer, please contact
Derwent Living’s community development team on 01332 614 873.

Image: adults- Nick Clarke, bike recycling assistant, Adam Harries, bike recycling supervisor, Christine Smith, Derwent Living community regeneration officer, Children - Robert 9, Mackye 8, Philip 9, Leiarnah, 11, Robert, 11