Access Bikes FAQs
Access Bikes FAQs
Access Bikes is an innovative new pilot programme funded by Transport Scotland which aims to increase access to bikes and cycling for people on low incomes. In this pilot year the scheme will be running in Aberdeenshire, Caithness, City of Edinburgh, Renfrewshire and the Scottish Borders. Find out more and how to apply
Please see below for everything you need to know about Access Bikes.
- What is Access Bikes?
- Who can benefit from Access Bikes?
- What can Access Bikes grants be used for?
- What kind of bikes can the grants be used to buy?
- Can the grant be used to buy new or second-hand bikes?
- What is the maximum amount that I can apply for?
- How much can we spend on a bike?
- Is there a specific number of bikes that we can apply for?
- Can I apply as part of a group?
- Is there bike riding skills training available for people who are not confident cyclists?
- What do you need from us?
- What do you expect from the bike recipients?
- Can we also access Cycling UK monitoring of our participants’ cycling activity?
- Can the same household be given more than one bike?
- Can the grants be used to buy bikes for children?
- Do I need to see proof of income or benefit status for bike recipients?
- Can you offer support to help us buy the right bikes for our people?
- Will the bikes be delivered to our premises?
- Do we need to store the bikes?
- Are we liable if the bike recipient has an accident on the road?
- What happens if a bike gets stolen?
- How do I apply for Access Bikes funding?
1. What is Access Bikes?
Access Bikes is an innovative new pilot programme funded by Transport Scotland aiming to increase access to bikes and cycling for people on low incomes. In this pilot year the scheme will be running in Aberdeenshire, Caithness, City of Edinburgh, Renfrewshire and the Scottish Borders. Community organisations in these areas can apply for funding to buy bikes and equipment for adults that they are working with who would like to get a bike and start cycling. The bikes will then be given to people who need them.
2. Who can benefit from Access Bikes?
Access Bikes grants are available to organisations working with people on low incomes in our pilot areas. This funding is designed to support individuals who would not be able to afford to buy a bike. We expect grant recipient organisations to already work with significant numbers of individuals on low incomes and communities affected by deprivation to ensure that this funding reaches those who need it.
To demonstrate that your organisation is an appropriate partner, we would like you to describe the profile of the individuals or communities you already work with. Data or statistics are helpful to confirm and justify our selection of grant recipients e.g. lowest 10% SIMD area, receiving Universal Credit or equivalent, households struggling to manage financially (whether receiving or not receiving benefits), etc.
3. What can Access Bikes grants be used for?
The funding can be used to buy adult cycles and necessary equipment such as helmets, locks, lights and bike maintenance tools. Everything that people will need to start cycling. Bikes can be used for both transport and leisure journeys and the type of bike will depend on the needs of the individuals who will be receiving the bike.
4.What kind of bikes can the grants be used to buy?
Access Bikes grant funding can be used to buy standard upright two-wheel cycles and if there is a need, electric bikes and non-standard cycles to suit people with health conditions or disabilities. Electric cycles are pedal assisted standard two-wheel bicycles. Non-standard cycles include tricycles (with or without pedal assist), hand-cycles, recumbent cycles. The grant application form will ask you for the reasoning behind your bike choice.
5.Can the grant be used to buy new or second-hand bikes?
The grant can be used to buy either new or refurbished second hand bikes from a bike shop or bike recycler. Please note that bikes must be purchased from a reputable supplier so cannot be purchased from Gumtree, Facebook or Ebay. When you make your grant application, we will provide you with a list of cycle suppliers who will be happy to help you through the selection and purchase process if you do not have a supplier in mind.
6.What is the maximum amount that I can apply for?
Each application will be different depending on the people you are working with. The maximum amount that you can apply for will depend on the specific requirements of the bike recipients. We would expect you to provide detailed costings for the specific bikes and equipment required at the time of application. We would expect you to consider the needs of individuals, bike suppliers, best value for money.
7.How much can we spend on a bike?
We want to make sure that all bikes provided through Access Bikes are good quality bikes from reputable brands that will last and be suitable for everyday use. We would recommend that you research the market and avoid purchases based purely on low costs. Budget bikes never provide value for money and will not stand up to regular use. You should aim to be spending somewhere in the region of: standard 2-wheel cycles £300-600; e-bike £1500-£3000; e-trike £1800-£3300. Please speak to us about non-standard cycles for your specific requirements.
8.Is there a specific number of bikes that we can apply for?
Yes. Applications should be for a minimum of 10 bikes and a maximum of 20.
9.Can I apply as part of a group?
If you are a smaller organisation and cannot identify 10 potential bike recipients, you can work in partnership with another local organisation to share the bikes between your clients. In this situation, one group would make the application and take responsibility for distribution and supporting the monitoring.
10.Is there cycle skills training available for people who are not confident cyclists?
Yes. Everyone who receives a bike will be issued with an Essential Cycling Skills book and access to online Cycling UK resources. If the bike recipient is new to cycling or not a confident cyclist, then we can link them to cycle trainers in your area to build their skills and confidence on the bike and on the roads.
11.What do you need from us?
We would be looking for a referral form to be completed for each bike recipient and to co-ordinate bike orders and deliveries. We would also like support in finding a local venue to deliver bike maintenance training for your bike recipients. Learning how to look after the bike is a key aspect to ensuring the sustainability of the project.
12.What do you expect from the bike recipients?
We would be looking for the bike recipients to consent to share their referral form information with us as a baseline survey. We would like them to take part in programme monitoring and evaluation surveys throughout the first year of ownership. We would also expect them to look after their bike and store it safely and securely indoors or in purpose-built cycle storage facility at their accommodation.
13.Can we also access Cycling UK monitoring of our participants’ cycling activity?
Yes. There will be a data sharing agreement in your grant terms and conditions and in the bike recipient referral form which will allow us to share information to monitor the project.
14.Can the same household be given more than one bike?
We know that people are more likely to cycling if they have company so would support multiple adults from the same household to get a bike. We will leave the specific decisions about who gets a bike to your professional judgement.
15.Can the grants be used to buy bikes for children?
No, unfortunately not. Access Bikes grants can only be used to buy adult bikes. However, there are other organisations working on free bikes for children pilot schemes who might able to help.
16.Do I need to see proof of income or benefit status for bike recipients?
No. There is no need for people to present proof of income or benefits. We want to make the process as simple for the participants as possible. You know your community better than we ever will and we are more than happy to trust your professional judgements of their needs.
17.Can you offer support to help us buy the right bikes for our people?
Yes. Every grant applicant will be issued with a grant application pack containing details of local bike retailers and manufacturers. They will be more than happy to guide you through the purchasing options and help you to get the best bikes for your people. If you think you will need support with this aspect of the programme, please let us know and we can pair you up with a local bike shop or project.
18.Will the bikes be delivered to our premises?
Depending on the supplier and your location, bikes could either be delivered to your premises or collected instore. Whatever works best for you and your bike recipients. Once you get the grant, the choice of bikes and suppliers will be up to you.
19.Do we need to store the bikes?
If you get the bikes delivered to your premises, then you would need to store them until the recipients can come and collect them. With a bit of co-ordination, this shouldn’t be for too long. Please remember that if the bikes are to be stored at your premises while waiting for their new owner to collect them, they will need to be covered by your insurance in case of theft. If you do not have access to storage space, then choosing to collect bikes instore or buying from a local retailer would be the best option for you.
20.Are we liable if the bike recipient has an accident on the road?
No. You do not have any liability for that bike once it has been handed over. We recommend that you get the bike's new owner to sign a transfer of assets form to show that they are the new owner of that bike.
21.What happens if a bike gets stolen?
Once a bike has been transferred to a new owner it will be their responsibility to look after the bike. Please be assured that we would never expect a bike recipient to replace a stolen bike and firmly believe that prevention is much better than any cure. We will supply you the details of The Bike Register where you will be able to buy bike registration kits as a theft deterrent and to register the new owner on their database. That way if the worst should happen and the bike is stolen there is a chance that it could be returned to its legal owner.
The funding can be used to buy bike accessories so new owners will also be issued with a lock. They can access information on cycle security on our website.
We have negotiated a bulk discount with Bike Register and your organisation will be able to take advantage of that as you are part of the Access Bikes programme. We recommend security marking and registering the bike and its new owner on their national database.
22.How do I apply for Access Bikes funding?
If you would like more information on Access Bikes or would like to make an application, please email us or speak to Eileen Hamill on 7920711052 about your application.