We know it can be hard to fill the school holidays; particularly at the moment when options are limited. So we created the Recyke y’bike Easter Challenge! The aim is to pick a level that suits you best and then tick off the miles over the two weeks. It’s designed to be challenging but achievable for those of us who aren’t necessarily regular cyclists. You can get the kids involved too!
We hope that by taking part you become a more confident cyclist, find new routes and develop a more regular cycling habit. We also hope that you’ll consider getting sponsored to raise money for Recyke y’bike. Funds raised will go towards providing more bikes for people in need. Access to a bike can be life changing for someone who is struggling to afford public transport and the benefits of exercise and fresh air can significantly improve wellbeing. Finally, we hope that you tell people that you’re taking part in the challenge, spreading the word about Recyke y’bike and the joys of cycling!
Family challenge – cycle 100 miles over the two week break all together OR as a relay.
Individual (intro) – cycle 150 miles over the two week break.
Individual (advanced) – cycle 300 miles over the two week break.
All participants who sign up will be able to access a free bike safety check plus loads of ideas for routes around Newcastle and Durham to keep your rides varied and interesting. You’ll also receive hints and tips about keeping your bike running well, carrying out simple repairs on the go and cycling safely. We’ll also offering spot prizes for fab fundraising, fantastic photos, funky fancy dress and inspiring efforts!
Sign up here to start receiving emails with all the info you need to get involved!
At Recyke we’re passionate about getting more people on bikes as we believe that bikes are brilliant and can tackle a number of health and social issues. A bike provides an affordable means of transport, it’s healthy, sustainable and lots of fun!
We get more people cycling by making bikes affordable and by sharing our mechanical knowledge so that more people can ride confidently and keep their bikes in safe working order. We aim to create opportunities and reduce barriers for everyone, particularly under-represented groups. We’re particularly keen to support more women to cycle as statistics show that, in the UK, women cycle less frequently and cover less miles than women. To encourage more women to cycle we’ve launched an offer of 50% off essential cycling equipment throughout the week beginning the 8th of March to celebrate International Women’s Day.
There are lots of national statistics demonstrating how women are underrepresented in cycling but let’s look at it purely from a Recyke y’bike perspective. We currently employ ten members of staff, eight are men. The vast majority of our volunteer team are men. Six out of our seven trustees are men. Two thirds of people referred to us for a free bike are men. We recognise that as an organisation we have more to do to achieve a better gender balance.
We know that being anti-discriminatory is not enough, we need to be proactive to encourage under represented groups. Our plan to achieve this is still a work in progress but includes revising our Equality and Diversity Policy, partnering with other organisations to provide bikes, training and volunteering taster sessions, providing training for staff, volunteers and trustees and learning from other organisations who are working to become more inclusive.
We’d love to hear your thoughts about how we can develop this work further. Get in touch!
We recently ran in interactive training session with Sage demonstrating some easy ways to keep your bike in tip top condition during the winter. You can watch the full recording below. If you or your team are interested in taking part in training via Zoom visit our contact page to get in touch!
Thanks to your generous donations of bikes, and #SpiritofChristmas funding from NCVS to cover replacement parts, during December we’ve been able to distribute 46 bikes to children who are growing up in poverty. Bikes have gone to schools and charity partners who’ve made sure that they have matched bikes to children who need them most. Some of the bikes were distributed straight away, some have gone to parents to put away for Christmas. Bikes are such a great way for children to have fun, be active, get outdoors and start to develop more independence. We’re looking forward to getting lots more bikes out to people who need them in 2021!
It hasn’t all been bleak this year… here’s some of our highlights!
2020 has been a bleak year for many of us, BUT, for one Recyke y’bike volunteer, it’s been a turning point.
Kami began volunteering at Recyke y’bike in 2019 after The Volunteer Centre referred him to us. Kami had recently arrived in the UK seeking asylum and was looking for ways to use his time and energy constructively.
Despite not having previous experience with bikes, Kami proved to be a fast learner and put in a huge amount of voluntary hours helping to clean and refurbish bikes. He was super speedy in the scrapping area (an unpopular task within the team!) and dismantled hundreds bikes which couldn’t be refurbished so that their components could be recycled.
Although Kami was facing his own challenges – managing on £37.50 per week and trying to progress his asylum claim – he always found ways to help others and put a smile on people’s faces, including setting up a partnership with Newcastle University students to pass on children’s bikes and scooters to families in need.
Finally, the news we’d been hoping for came in July that Kami had been accepted as a refugee and granted leave to remain in the UK. He quickly found new accommodation and a job at a PPE factory. Before we knew it, a couple of months later, Kami had secured an even better job at Nissan! He was able to furnish his flat and purchase his own car.
We’re so happy that things have worked out for Kami, no one deserves it more!
If you bought a new bike during the first lockdown of 2020 now is a great time to get it serviced so that it will keep serving you well next year! A basic service at Recyke y’bike starts at £40. A basic service at least twice a year is recommended to keep your bike in good working order if you’re riding regularly (which we hope you are!).
Here are 4 key reasons why it makes sense to invest in regular servicing by a professional mechanic.
- Safety: Unless you are an experienced mechanic you might miss a problem with your bike on your pre-ride check which leads to an issue when you’re out on a ride. At best this is a major inconvenience, at worst it could lead to injuries and damage to your bike. Bikes that are serviced regularly will be inspected, adjusted and lubricated to ensure a safe and stress-free ride.
- Savings: Regular maintenance helps you to save money in the long term. You can catch problems early and make repairs as needed instead of getting hit with a large bill. For example, replacing the chain regularly prevents wear on more expensive components. Often, when customers bring bikes in for repairs which haven’t been regularly serviced, it can be more cost effective for them to buy a replacement bike rather than fix their existing bike.
- Smoother Ride: Our mechanics will check key components such as the spokes, tyres, transmission and cables. Even minor adjustments can make a big difference to how your bike feels when you ride it.
- Sustainability: Look after your bike and it can last you 30+ years! Neglect it and it could end up unnecessarily on the scrap heap.
So don’t delay, bring your bike down to Recyke y’bike for a service today!
Our Durham team have started producing a new line of Recyke y’bike “In- house” bikes, hand built by our experienced and skilled volunteers.
Each volunteer is involved in the whole process from start to finish. Donated bikes that otherwise would have been broken down for parts due to cosmetic damage are given a new lease of life. The bikes are stripped down to the frame and fork and prepped for spraying.
The bikes are sprayed in a range of popular colour schemes and then rebuilt by the volunteers, re-using as many recycled parts as possible along with necessary new parts. The end product is a beautiful, recycled, refurbished quality bike which comes with a mechanical guarantee.
The bikes are specifically designed as a city bike for the Durham commuter. To book a test ride contact the Durham shop!
On Thursday 26th November at 6pm we will be holding our first ever virtual AGM! We’ll be reviewing the last 12 months (there’s plenty to reflect on!) and looking ahead to the next 12 months, sharing our plans and aspirations. To register to attend please visit our Eventbrite page.
As we move into winter you may well find yourself cycling in poor light or even in the dark. It’s really important that you’re well lit up so that you can be seen by other road or cycle path users. In this short video Neil shares some top tips.
We are also aware that bike theft appears to be on the rise. It’s really important to lock your bike up safely. Check out this video for some more top tips from Neil!
We have a selection of new locks and lights available at both shops as well as some second hand fluorescent and reflective clothing and accessories.