The Big Bike Fix in Leeds – a charity which gives used bikes a new lease of life before gifting them to those who need them most – has renovated its workshop, thanks to a grant from enfinium. The funding was awarded to the charity by enfinium’s nearby Skelton Grange energy from waste facility, which is currently under construction.
Since launching in June 2020, the Big Bike Fix has refurbished over 1,300 bicycles and donated them back to the local community, as well as repairing another 1,000 bikes. The scheme enables people in low-income households and communities to access active travel for free, in turn contributing towards improved wellbeing and better air quality in the area.
As well as funding the renovation of the Big Bike Fix Workshop in Beeston Hill, the grant from enfinium will enable more volunteers to be trained and become more experienced bicycle mechanics. This helps grow skills within the community as well as passing on know-how that boosts employability, where needed. Beneficiaries of the bikes are also encouraged to get involved in the fixing and maintenance of their own bicycles.
Councillor Ed Carlisle (Green, Hunslet & Riverside), from the Big Bike Fix, said:
“Huge thanks to enfinium for supporting our bike project with this grant. Our workshop and teaching space is so much better than before, which our volunteer team have really appreciated. It’s meant we’ve been able to make an even bigger difference in our community: enabling people to travel for free (which can especially help with work and education opportunities), and also positively impacting people’s health, wellbeing and confidence.”
“We are always on the look-out for volunteers, especially fixers; and also, this winter we aim to become incorporated as a Community Interest Company (CIC) in our own right, and would love to hear from people who can help coordinate the project.”
He went on to thank supporting partners, including SLATE, LS-TEN, St Luke’s CARES, and the Boston Spa Big Bike Fix; and to thank Councillors on the Inner South Community Committee who also funded the project this year.
Clara, a bike recipient from the Big Bike Fix, said:
“We’ve managed to get bikes for our whole family of five from the Bike Fix project and they’re brilliant. When we’ve had issues with them we have simply visited the workshop and got them fixed, plus gained the skills to sort the minor things ourselves. The bike has made a huge difference to my mental health but also allows us to enjoy family time – every weekend we head off on a bike ride together. I’m very environmentally conscious of how much we consume as a family, so knowing that we are making full use of bikes, rather than driving somewhere, and fixing instead of buying new, is great.”
Mike Maudsley, Chief Executive Officer at enfinium, said:
“We are already creating jobs and generating supply chain opportunities for local businesses – but we know that our commitment to Leeds goes further than this. We will always be a good neighbour to the communities in which we operate and are delighted to be supporting the great work that the Big Bike Fix do in getting people together and engaged in active travel. We look forward to seeing how this grant – and the other grants we will be making over the coming months and years – makes a real difference.”
enfinium’s £50,000 Community Benefit Fund has been made available to community groups and organisations in Leeds via enfinium Skelton Grange, which is currently under construction and scheduled for completion in 2025.
Applications to enfinium’s Community Benefit Fund are still open and will be accepted from projects or organisations that will directly benefit the communities neighbouring the facility’s site. Organisations who are based outside of this area are also eligible to apply for grants, as long as they can prove how the award of funding will have a beneficial impact on these communities. Applications are welcomed from registered charities, schools, places of learning, not-for-profit companies, community organisations and groups – including those supported by public funding.
All applications must demonstrate that the project or event in question will either deliver environmental benefits (such as the promotion of clean energy, waste reduction and / or recycling improvements), improve standards of health, safety and wellbeing or enhance the wider community. This could mean promoting skills and educational development, environmental improvements or activity that helps boost community cohesion.
Application criteria and application forms can be downloaded from the project website: www.enfinium.co.uk/facilities/skelton-grange. For more information please call 0800 422 0036 or email email@example.com.
Contact the Big Bike Fix Leeds at bit.ly/BikeFixLeeds
This post is based on a press release issued by enfinium
Photo: Big Bike Fixers outside their refurbished workshop
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