The role of a Recyke y’bike Trustee

Trustees are absolutely essential to the running of any charity. Trustees share overall responsibility for governing the charity and directing how it’s managed. They are unpaid volunteers. Trustees have a legal duty to act in the charity’s best interests, manage its resources responsibly and act with reasonable care and skill. 

At Recyke y’bike our trustees come from different backgrounds but are all enthusiastic cyclists and passionate about helping the charity to fulfil its purpose. In a normal month each trustee dedicates roughly 5 hours per month to attending meetings or following up on actions. This might increase in periods of flux (like in a pandemic!).  As well as Trustee Meetings most trustees also sit on a sub-group (Finance, Marketing, Staff and Volunteers) or contribute to short term working groups to focus on specific issues. 

 

“Although it sounds cheesy, it’s a real privilege to be a trustee of Recyke y’bike. It’s a fantastic organisation, providing bike shaped happiness to loads of people, some of whom are the most vulnerable in our communities. It’s hard work; the corona virus has meant we have had to introduce a whole new way of working, making sure we are still able to keep going, however challenging. Our staff and volunteers are amazing; dedicated, committed, innovative and  cheerful, despite all. It feels like being part of a big, noisy family, all of whom are mad keen on bikes, and introducing people to the joys of cycling.” 

 

Some of our trustees also volunteer in our shops or workshop, helping with the practical tasks that keep the wheels turning at Recyke y’bike. 

 

“Having been volunteering at Recyke y’Bike for several years I have been uplifted many times  by the enjoyment of the various jobs that I have done either as a trustee or getting my hands on refurbishing a bike or stuck in helping move to new premises for instance. But I have also been uplifted and enthused by the commitment shown by fellow volunteers and the practical results of much of the work that Recyke y’Bike does day to day.

There are many challenges to overcome too as a trustee and these are stimulating and offer a sense of achievement  as my professional  working career is coming towards its end.”

 

Volunteering as a trustee is a great way to use your existing skills to do good in your local community, gain new skills and experience and meet new people. Some employers will provide employees with dedicated time to fulfil their duties as a trustee and it’s a valuable addition to any CV. 

 

If you want to find out more about becoming a trustee at Recyke y’bike please contact sara@recyke.bike. We’re particularly interested in hearing from anyone with Human Resources or Health and Safety experience. 

Bikes are not disposable items!

For many of our customers, buying a refurbished bike is an environmental choice. Riding any bike is a great choice for the environment, and a refurbished bike has a much lower carbon footprint than a new bike. Add in the benefit of reducing waste going to landfill and it seems like a no-brainer! 

A fully refurbished bike ready to serve another owner!

However, we often hear customers say that they’re buying a cheap bike from Recyke y’bike as they’re planning on leaving it outside, or they’re at uni and they plan to leave it behind at the end of term. They see the bikes as short term, low value investments which are disposable. This makes our hearts break a little bit. 

 

A well maintained bike can easily last for 30 years. If you’re buying a refurbished bike from Recyke y’bike it may well have already served it’s previous owner(s) well for 10 or 15 years. And with a bit of care it will serve you for another 15 years! Or, if you move on from the area or move on from your bike, you can donate it back to Recyke y’bike, a great way to ‘pay it forwards’; enabling someone else to enjoy the bike! 

 

Sadly, a significant proportion of donated bikes which have been left outside or haven’t been maintained are past the point where they can be saved and instead, are broken down for scrap and parts. This is avoidable! 

 

There are some simple steps you can take to keep your bike in good working order for you, or someone else, to enjoy for years to come.

 

  1. Protect it from the elements. If you can’t store your bike inside or in a dry space, invest in a waterproof cover. They’re cheap to buy and make a big difference! 
  2. Protect it from thieves. Lock up your bike and your wheels! Locking your frame with a D lock is the best way to keep it secure. An additional chain or cable lock for your wheels will protect them. 
  3. Clean and lubricate your chain. This 5 minute job will make a huge difference. 
  4. Invest in a bike service. If you ride your bike regularly (and we hope that you do), book it in for a service twice a year. At Recyke y’bike, a basic service costs £40 and could dramatically extend the life of your bike and save you money in the long run. A replacement chain costs as little as £10. A worn chain will cause wear to your cassette, leading to bigger bills in the medium term. 

 

Make the ethical, environmental choice. Care for your bike and it will provide many years of service, to you or to someone else! For more tips on bike maintenance check out the Recyke y’bike YouTube channel or videos section on our Facebook page!

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Thank you to our Crowdfunder supporters!

We did it!!!! Thank you to everyone who helped us reach and exceed our target. The final Crowdfunder total was an amazing £5,300!!!! We’re very grateful for all of the support we’ve had and we’re looking forward to arranging rewards for those who purchased them.

17 North Road is open!

Our new Durham location is now open for business! Servicing and repairs can be dropped off and collected Wednesday to Saturday 12-2. Bike sales are by appointment. Please contact the shop via Facebook message, email (durham.shop@recyke.bike) or call 07787540304 to arrange. Huge thank you to the staff and volunteers at Durham who have created a fabulous space in a short amount of time on a minuscule budget! And to Durham County Council for their ongoing support.

It’s Here – The Energy Saving Trust’s ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’.

Following lots of anticipation, the Government finally announced that the ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’ would be open for voucher applications from Tuesday 28 July at 23:45.

This means that you can now apply for a £50 voucher to put towards the cost of a repair (terms and conditions apply). 

The scheme is aimed at getting unused bikes back on the road.

Information about the scheme from the Department of Transport and links to take you to the Energy Saving Trust £50 voucher application can be found here…

 

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/fix-your-bike-voucher-scheme-apply-for-a-voucher

 

Following the announcement on the 28th, Recyke y’bike have already received lots of emails and phone calls regarding this scheme. Most of the questions are asking if certain bikes and repairs can be accepted. 

Just like you, we have not yet seen the voucher application process. But we do know that there is a full list of terms and conditions and eligibility criteria provided during your voucher application process. 

Recyke y’bike also has to follow the same terms and conditions. Therefore, we cannot accept repairs that fall outside the scheme’s eligibility criteria. It’s important that Recyke y’bike follow the terms to ensure we are correctly reimbursed by the Energy Saving Trust who are administering the scheme. 

Please be patient while we get to grips with the system and its conditions.

Here is another brief recap of the basic terms. The main eligibility criteria are…

 

“The repairs must be necessary to make the bike roadworthy and fit for purpose”

 

Repairs CAN include…

 

  • Repair or replacement of tyres, tubes, wheels and related components
  • Adjust, repair or replace brake system components
  • Adjust, repair or replace transmission system components
  • Repair or replace other essential components which prevent safe use of the cycle

 

Some things NOT included in the scheme…

 

  • Replacement or upgrade of existing safe and roadworthy components
  • Replacement or repair of removable lighting accessories
  • The purchase of parts and accessories for you to repair your own bike

 

Please check our availability and turnaround times before applying for a voucher

Bikes must be repaired to meet the legal requirements of the law relating to cycle roadworthiness. This means we cannot just repair part of your bike in order to minimise costs for you. We must carry out all the repairs required to make the bike safe and roadworthy. We will give you an estimate for the total cost of repair when you drop your bike off. Your voucher will cover £50 of the total cost.

Due to the high demand for repairs across the cycle industry at the moment, only 50,000 vouchers are being released in this initial phase of the scheme.

We will create a FAQ section about the scheme as soon as we have more information and more experience of the process.

Thank You!

A HUGE THANK YOU to everyone who supported our Crowdfunder campaign to refurbish bikes for people on very low incomes. We’d seen a dramatic increase in referrals during lock down and with your help we raised an incredible £2,400 to cover the parts and labour needed to turn donated bikes into safe and functional bikes to assist with people’s health, well being, ability to get about and have fun! Referrals come from a wide range of workers (teachers, social workers, support workers, GPs) and bikes go to people of all ages and walks of life. It’s amazing how much difference a bike can make to someone’s quality of life and it’s great that unwanted bikes can be given a second life rather than ending up in landfill!

Coming Soon – The Energy Saving Trust’s ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’.

Do you own a bike that hasn’t been used for a while and which isn’t roadworthy? Maybe the tyres have perished or the brakes don’t work and this is preventing you from riding it? If you’ve got a bike like this, you will soon be able to apply for a £50 voucher towards the cost of repairs to get it safely back on the road.

What is the ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’?

EST

The ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’ is being set up by the Energy Saving Trust (EST) to encourage more people in England to embrace cycling, to boost the number of low carbon, low pollution trips and to promote an alternative to private cars and public transport, particularly while social distancing measures are in place. 

The scheme is open to anyone who has an unused bike in need of a repair in order to make it safe to ride. 

You will be able to apply for a maximum of two vouchers per household, with each voucher worth £50 towards the overall cost repairs, per bike.

The EST are busy registering participating cycle repair businesses, and we’ll let you know as soon as the scheme is open to the public so you can apply for your £50 voucher. 

Recyke y’bike have met all the repairer eligibility criteria and are already successfully registered and set up to accept your vouchers!

workstand

What is and what isn’t covered under the scheme?

There are terms and conditions for everything, here is a brief explanation of the scheme, what is required for eligibility and what is covered…

  • The cycle owner must be over 18, with two forms of ID (photographic and address)
  • The repairs must be necessary to make the bike roadworthy and fit for purpose

 

Repairs CAN include…

 

  • Repair or replacement of tyres, tubes, wheels and related components
  • Adjust, repair or replace brake system components
  • Adjust, repair or replace transmission system components
  • Repair or replace other essential components which prevent safe use of the cycle

 

Some things NOT included in the scheme…

 

  • Replacement or upgrade of existing safe and roadworthy components
  • Replacement or repair of removable lighting accessories
  • The purchase of parts and accessories for you to repair your own bike

 

If you have a voucher, is all the repair work free?

Each bike and each repair will be different and not every bike will be repairable for £50. Some repairs will cost less and some will cost more, in some cases it could be a lot more. 

Vouchers will cover up to £50 per bike towards the service and parts that need replacement. If the final repair cost is less than £50 then you are fully covered. However, you will need to pay the remainder if the cost is greater than £50. In each case, we will give you an estimate of the total repair before accepting your bike and your voucher code.

Keep an eye on our Facebook page for updates.

We’ll publish more information about the ‘Fix Your Bike Voucher Scheme’ as soon as we have it, together with more details of the voucher process and how we are operating it. 

We really want to get as many bikes out of those garages as possible and this scheme might just give you the boost to start that journey. 

Remember, if you have a bike hanging around that you don’t ride anymore, and the scheme isn’t for you, then please consider donating it to Recyke y’bike. You can find out more about donating your bike, cash or your time here.

 

Adaptations during Covid-19 FAQs

Recyke y’bike has made several adaptations to enable us to work safely during Covid-19. Below are some answers to Frequently Asked Questions from our customers.

 

Why are appointments needed?

Appointments help us in two ways. 1. It means we limit the number of people in the shop at any one time so that we can observe safe social distancing. 2. It enables us to match the number of bikes available to the number of customers to avoid customers making futile and unnecessary journeys. We’re currently experiencing far higher demand for bikes than we are able to meet. 

 

How long is each appointment?

We book customers in for 15 minute time slots. That gives each customer time to test ride several bikes and make a decision. 

 

Do I need an appointment for a bike repair?

No, bike repairs and servicing can be dropped off Wednesday to Saturday 12-2. 

 

What type of bikes can I expect?

All of our stock is on our Facebook shop page and updated daily so you can check out what bikes we have before you come for your appointment. Please be aware that unless you are the first appointment of the day (12pm) the bike you might like may be sold before you arrive. We do our best to keep a good selection of stock in but are limited by what people choose to donate. 

 

How do I know what size bike I need?

Here is a rough guide to bike sizes, but please be aware that bike sizes do vary by bike manufacturer and type of bike: https://www.raleigh.co.uk/bike-size-guide/

 

How much do bikes cost?

The average price of an adult bike is £140

 

How do I book an appointment?

Appointments are available to book on Fridays from 8am by phone (leave a voicemail), the contact form on our website or Facebook message. Be quick – they go very fast!

 

Can you deliver my bike?

Sorry – we haven’t got capacity to deliver bikes. 

 

How much will my bike cost to fix?

When you bring your bike in a mechanic will assess it and give you a no obligation quote. Please don’t pone or send us photos on Facebook, our office team are knowledgeable but can’t give you an accurate assessment. 

 

How long will it take to get my bike repaired?

Turn around time is currently 1-2 weeks. If we get too busy we might ask you to take your bike away and bring it back the following week as we only have a finite amount of bike storage. 

 

Can I buy parts?

At the moment we’re not selling bike parts. Because of worldwide demand, parts are currently more hard to come by. Staff only have limited capacity so are focusing energy on selling and repairing bikes at the moment.