A few changes at Recyke y’bike

It’s only been a day, but everyone is already missing Sara!

Sara has returned to working just around the corner from us at Stepney Bank Stables, and would you believe it, she has also taken Scout (shop doggie) with her. Everyone is wishing Sara good luck with her new job, and we all thank her for the hard work and the effort that she has given Recyke y’bike over the last few years.

Sara has dealt with the logistical challenges of moving us from the arches to our huge Brinkburn Street location, keeping us running as an essential service during Covid lockdowns, and moving the Durham shop, not once but twice. She has also helped to make Recyke y’bike what it is today. Our shops are busy and the delivery of our charitable objectives have moved to new heights thanks to Sara. I don’t think I could easily put a figure on how many people have benefitted from the work she has done as our General Manager.


Scout will also be a huge miss. When staff were feeling the pressure, we could always rely on Scout being there and offering up his belly for us to rub, and his chin for a tickle. All Scout asked for was to be tucked into his bed and blanket, constant attention, strokes and snacks (lots of snacks). Scout was also our number one customer service and social media dog – I’m sure he helped sell many of our bikes by making customers feel so at home.

A few changes have also happened at our Chester le Street shop. Phil has taken on the role of Shop Manager, and has already had a great start. We opened the shop at the end of June, after relocating from North Road in Durham city centre, and the new shop on Ropery Lane is buzzing with repairs and bike donations. I can only see Phil and the shop going from strength to strength.

Pete, who delivered lots of our outreach at Byker, has also come on board full time as a mechanic at Chester le Street. He has several years of bike fixing experience and will be great support to Phil and the other mechanics and volunteers in the shop in the months to come.

So that just leaves me, Neil. I’ll be trying my best to follow in the footsteps of Sara, as Recyke y’bike General Manager. I started my Recyke y’bike journey back in 2019 as a mechanic at Byker, and I’m really looking forward to my new role, and to the challenges ahead.

And that’s not all. We are also creating a new role and recruiting a Community Engagement Coordinator to lead our community partnerships, funding and outreach work (more news hopefully on that appointment coming soon)!

The 2018 Great Kids Bikes Giveaway!!

It’s summer! The sun is shining! And children love being out in the sun in the summer on their bikes!

What’s that, you say, “But my child doesn’t have a bike (sad face)”

Fear not! On 30th May, Recyke y’bike is GIVING AWAY kids bikes from our Byker workshop.

So come on down and get a FREE bike!!

Forthcoming Event: Rachel Aldred

Dr Rachel Aldred will be in Newcastle on Tuesday 12 December to talk about new analysis of England’s Active People Survey. This looks at demographic inequalities in cycling, including figures specifically for Newcastle: Which groups are under-represented in cycling, and why is this? Can we change it, and how?

Dr Aldred is a Reader in Transport (University of Westminster) and specialises in researching cycling. Her work has covered injuries, near misses, cycling equity, and cycling experiences, using a range of research methods. In 2016 she won the Economic and Social Research Council Prize for Outstanding Impact in Public Policy. She tweets at @RachelAldred and her personal website is www.rachelaldred.org 

Newcycling has organised a public event with the help of Tom Maskell. It’s open to all, and we hope to see lots of you there – here’s the programme for the evening:

5:30-6:00pm – Registration

6:00 – 7:00pm – Talk followed by 15/20 min Q&A: Cycling Equity: who rides and who doesn’t? Why – and how can we change it?

7:15-9:00pm or later – Drinks and snacks at Bar Loco (5min walk from the Urban Science Building)

You can book your place here – it’s FREE!

Proposed Changes to Recyke y’Bike Ltd.’s Constitution Documents

As part of our AGM agenda this year we’re proposing to change the Charity’s Memorandum and Articles of Association. These are the legal documents that underpin what we can do as a charity and how we’re governed, so they’re quite important!

There are several changes which are of a technical nature, updating the documents to bring them into line with current legislation. There are also changes to our Charitable Objectives though, as highlighted below:

Old Objectives:

The Objects are
3.1. To develop the capacity and skills of the socially disadvantaged community of the north east of
England in such a way that they are better able to identify, and help meet, their needs and to
participate more fully in society
3.2. To preserve and protect the health of the public by encouraging cycling
3.3. To advance the education of all ages of the public in the safe use, re-use and maintenance of
3.4. The protection and preservation of the environment for the public benefit by saving bicycles
from landfill, the promotion of bicycle re-use and recycling

Proposed New Objectives:

 1. Objects
1.1 The Objects of the Charity are-
1.1.1 To develop the confidence and skills of disadvantaged people in the N.E. of England so that they are able to participate more fully in society
1.1.2 To preserve and protect the health of the public by encouraging cycling
1.1.3 To advance the education of all ages of the public in the safe use, re-use and maintenance of bicycles
1.1.4 To protect and preserve the environment for the public benefit by saving bicycles from landfill, the promotion of bicycle re-use and recycling and the spreading of best practice in that field.
1.1.5 To work with partner organisations to support bicycle re-use and recycling in other countries.
1.2 These objects may only be amended by special resolution.

Notes on the new Objects:

1.1.1 Has simplified the language and adds that we want to develop people’s confidence

1.1.2 & 1.1.3 Unchanged from the previous 3.2 & 3.3 respectively

1.1.4 Simplifies the language, and adds that we want to spread best practice by promoting bicycle recycling

1.1.5 Last year we sent nearly 600 bikes to projects in Kenya & The Gambia, and we’re now making such activity one of our Charitable Objectives

1.2 Sets out what needs to happen if any of the above need updating in the future.

Recyke y’Bike AGM – 7th December 2017

Annual General Meeting of Recyke y’Bike Limited
(Company and Charity)
For year ending June 30th 2017

7th December 2017, 6.00 for 6:30pm
The Journey, Higham Place,
Newcastle upon Tyne NE1 8AN.


  1. Chairman’s welcome
  2. Apologies for absence
  3. Minutes of Previous AGM
  4. Matters Arising not dealt with elsewhere
  5. Chairman’s Remarks and presentation of Trustees’ Report
  6. To receive Financial Report and Accounts (Financial Year 1st July 2016 – 30th June 2017)
  7. Appointment of Officers and Trustees**.
  8. Appointment of Read, Milburn and Company as external examiner/auditor.
  9. To approve the amended and updated Articles of Association which includes modified wording of the Objects of the Charity, an additional object to reflect the work RyB does supporting bicycle recycling overseas and necessary changes for the Articles to comply with the latest Company Law and Charity Commission guidelines.
  10. Any other relevant business
  11. Provisional date of AGM for year 2017-18

After the main business we’re delighted that Space For Gosforth will also be presenting an outline of their campaign, and how they’ve tapped into the human element to make the issue of creating safe, people-friendly streets an irresistible movement.

Light refreshments will be provided and members and guests are welcome to stay for friendly chat and to partake of the Journey’s cafe facilities.

** Appointment of Officers and Trustees


One third of the Trustees must retire at each AGM, the longest-serving first. This year Rod Ferguson and Ian Bremner are in this category. Rod Ferguson has decided to resign as Trustee from the date of the AGM. Ian Bremner is willing to stand for re-election.

Dorothy Craw, Honorary President, was co-opted by the board in January this year is proposed for formal election to the board.

Also proposed for formal election are three people who have been approved by the Trustees and are thus recommended for acceptance.
Marion Talbot
Ed Mills
Tom Maskell

The following Trustees, who were on or re-elected to the Board at the previous AGM, continue in post:- John Litherland, Rod Stapley, William Mortada and Ben Hoare.

New trustees who are prepared to add their enthusiasm and expertise to running Recyke y’Bike are always welcome. A trustee must be an existing Member eg as an established volunteer or become one.

The Board can have up to 11 trustees and there will be 9 serving following this AGM.

Anyone considering standing as a trustee is invited to contact the Company Secretary,  or the chairman, John Litherland.



The following stand for reappointment:
John Litherland as Chairman.
Alasdair Wilson as Company Secretary (This post need not necessarily be held by a Trustee)
Rod Stapley as Treasurer.

UPDATE – 30/11/17:

Alasdair Wilson is resigning as Company Secretary, and the Trustees are proposing that Karl McCracken is appointed as Company Secretary in his capacity as the organisation’s General Manager. This post need not necessarily be held by a Trustee.

Recyke y’Bike Limited

Company No. 05839547 Registered Charity No. 1124639

Registered address:
Unit 2, Railway Arches, Hannington Street, Byker, Newcastle upon Tyne NE6 1JT


Winter Opening Hours at Byker!

It’s getting cold and dark in our Railway Arches Headquarters from which we plot world domination. So we’re switching to our Winter Opening Hours from next week (w/c 5th November)

  • Monday: Closed
  • Tuesday: Shop closed; workshop open for donations only, 10am – 4:30pm
  • Wednesday: Open 10am-4pm
  • Thursday: Open 10am-4pm
  • Friday: Open 10am-4pm
  • Saturday: Open 10am-4pm
  • Sunday: Closed


Lego bike mechanic (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0 clement127:Flickr) .jpg
We’re looking for a new team member at The Journey. This post will be full-time, 35hrs a week.

You’ll need to be a great bike mechanic. Preferably, you’ll be qualified to Velotech Gold or equivalent, along with at least six months’ hands-on workshop experience. We service & recycle a wide range of customers’ bikes, so you’ll need problem solving skills and familiarity with lots of different bikes, rather than intimate knowledge of the latest technology.

It would be a distinct advantage if you also have front-of-shop experience. You need to happy dealing with customers – either in person, or when they phone with enquiries.

You’ll be expected to have a firm commitment to Recyke y’Bike’s values: Equality and diversity; Community participation; sustainability and recycling; and Promotion of cycling. You must be a team player, able to get on with the other staff and volunteers.

Flexibility is important for this role, both in terms of the scope of the job (e.g. you may be asked to help in our other shops to cover holidays), and the hours you work – this role will include working on Saturdays. Currently holidays are 28 days a year pro-rata, and you’ll be enrolled in a contributory pension scheme.

We’ll be interviewing for this post in the last week of September. The expected start date is as soon as possible after. Application forms are available from any of our shops, or on our web site. If you’re thinking of applying, we’d encourage you to pop into our Byker workshop for an informal chat with our General Manager, Karl, or the Workshop Manager, Adrian.

CLOSING DATE FOR APPLICATIONS: 5pm on Friday 15th September

Application form and other documents:

Bike mechanic job advert (the above text):


Bike mechanic person spec:


Application Form:

Thank you to Chia Charge!

A big thank you to our new friends at Chia Charge. They’re a business making tasty cereal bars and other similar goodies that are great to keep a cyclist fuelled for a hard day in the saddle. But they’re also an ethical business, who’d signed up to 1% for the Planet. So earlier this month, they visited us to make a donation of £1,000.

We think that’s:

  1. Amazingly generous
  2. Absolutely awesome

We’ve put the money for one side – not for a rainy day (weather conditions today in Byker: Absolutely Battering It Down), but for a special project. We’re looking to send one of our mechanics and a volunteer to Nakuru in Kenya next year to deliver a Velotech course for our charity partners. With the funds from Chia Charge, we’re already halfway there.

Thanks again, guys!

Call for Quotations: Independent Examination of Accounts

Recyke y’bike is a charity, with a turnover of around £300k. Although that puts us in the top 10% or so of UK charities, it’s still pretty small compared with most private companies. If we were just a private company, we’d definitely be exempt from needing to have our accounts audited.

However, as a charity we do have a requirement for our accounts to be independently examined. Having been operating now for over a decade, we’re taking the opportunity to assess many of our existing providers for services. This includes the examination of accounts.

We are therefore looking to appoint a firm of accountants to provide this service. We anticipate that this will be a small contract, and that the work involved will be straightforward for most accountancy firms familiar with the charity sector. We will be able to provide backup / export files from Sage Line 50, along with details of policies applied and any non-standard practices.

Cost will be a factor, but not THE factor in our decision. Quality is far more important, and we need to feel comfortable that in awarding this contract, we’re building a relationship where the nominated supplier will from time to time be asked for advice on technical accounting issues.

In view of the low value of this contract, we don’t want interested parties to invest a huge amount of time in preparing their quotations. We are therefore specifying that your quotation should be no more than a single side of A4. Please ensure that you tell us how the quality you provide will be outstanding, and give an overall price for the year.

You can post your quotation to Karl McCracken, General Manager, Recyke y’bike Ltd, Unit 2 Hannington Street, Byker, NE6 1JT, or email to office@recyke-y-bike.org

Deadline for submissions is 10am, Monday 31st July.

We’re a Living Wage Employer

Our General Manager, Karl, looks pretty pleased about this – we’ve been accredited as a Living Wage Employer. This goes beyond the government’s “national living wage” (£7.50 per hour), and means that we pay 100% of our staff AND any subcontract or casual staff above the living wage threshold of £8.45 per hour.

Most of our staff started out as volunteers at Recyke y’bike. So although we don’t have any current staff vacancies, if you’re interested in a new career in the bicycle industry, you could do a lot worse than learn the ropes as a volunteer with us!