What do you get when you add life coaching to a load of old bike parts? A Grimsby cycle repair shop might have the answer.
Run by charity R-evolution, alongside North East Lincolnshire Council and its regeneration partner EQUANS, the workshop offers much more than a cycle service.
The repair shop, which moved to a bigger unit within the new Grimsby Business Centre site on Wednesday 9 February, not only repairs bikes, but supports trainees by developing their mechanical skills onsite. Recently, bike mechanic expertise was found to be a key skills gap in the Humber region.
R-evolution is a regional charity that trains people to get back into work or learn about employment. Not only is it equipping local people with skills that are in short supply, it also provides life coaches who help trainees to access work. Among the many life skills the coaches provide, trainees can learn about self-employment, accessing benefits and practical skills to help them land a job.
Many out-of-action bicycles are given a new lease of life by the mechanics. And new, safer bikes are fashioned from old bike parts – reducing the amount of waste going to landfill. Once a bike is newly assembled and checked for safety, it is taken to special events called ‘bike libraries’ where people on lower incomes can borrow a bike for free for a year.
The workshop is not open to the public, but mechanics get out and about within the community, including at schools and businesses, to offer a repair service and to give advice.
Councillor Stewart Swinburn, portfolio holder for environment and transport at North East Lincolnshire Council, said: “It’s schemes like this that are so valuable to every aspect of life in our borough. The benefits are wide-ranging, from boosting employment and developing skills, to improving mental and physical wellbeing and lowering carbon emissions by opting for your bike.”
Find out more about the new bike workshop run by R-evolution at r-evolution.org.uk