WHEN the wheels threatened to come off a Calderdale cycling charity’s bike library a Huddersfield firm rode to the rescue.
Happy Days of Sowerby Bridge, Town Hall Street, is part of the Welcome to Yorkshire bike library legacy established after the Tour de France “grand depart” in the region two years ago. The media giant Sky was offering 17 unwanted bikes but Happy Days was facing losing out due to a lack of cash to transport them from Sky’s campus in Livingston to Yorkshire.
George Hall, a keen cyclist and director of Jermyn Consulting, which is based at the Media Centre, immediately offered to organize and pay for the transport.
“It was a no brainer. I followed the Grand Depart in 2014 and cycled up Holme Moss when the Tour pedaled through and we’ve followed the Tour de Yorkshire. Cycling is great for your physical and mental wellbeing. The bike libraries are a great way of providing an opportunity for everyone to get out and learn to cycle.
“Sky contacted me and asked if I knew of a deserving charity and obviously the Welcome 2 Yorkshire bike libraries sprung to mind. But Sky couldn’t get them to Yorkshire and Happy Days had no cash to move them down. We arranged for them to be collected and delivered then we were on hand to unload them when they arrived,” he added.
“The bikes are in fairly good condition and Happy Days will repair and replace any damaged parts and then use them to enable people who couldn’t usually cycle the chance to learn to ride, gain confidence and where possible they are going to be used to allow people to cycle to job interviews.”
“In some cases whole families have been able to borrow bikes for up to a week free of charge to have some quality leisure time together.”
Angela Keenan is project manager at Happy Days which has helped 100s of people learn to ride since starting up two years ago.
“People can borrow them free of charge for anything from a day to a week for work or leisure. We have had some asylum seekers who use them to go to job interviews, ten homeless men who learnt bike maintenance with us and we organize cycle rides for women and children who lack confidence on busy roads. It can be life changing.
“We’re really grateful for both Sky and Jermyn consulting for the generous gift,” she added.