Merilin discovers Glasgow on two wheels with Scotland Cycle Repair Scheme

Merilin tackling the Cathkin Braes above Glasgow
Merilin always cycled back in Estonia but hadn’t been in the saddle since moving to Glasgow. With a helping hand from the Scotland Cycle Repair Scheme, she has switched to cycling for some everyday journeys

Merilin, 36, moved to Glasgow from her native Estonia five years ago to work as an engineer for VHE Construction, a company which has undertaken a number of regeneration projects in the city. Having left her beloved Bianchi bike behind, she relied on her car to get around her adopted city.

She said: “Before I got the bike repaired, I didn’t cycle at all but now I ride when the weather is OK. I ride to the shops and don’t always use my car, so I’m very happy.”

Merilin explained how cycling was a way of life for her as she was growing up.

“I cycled with my friends in our small town for fun, to go to the shops, to go swimming or play basketball or to go to other places for a trip.

“Estonia is such a small country and half covered with forest so it’s great for cycling in, although not so good in the cities.”

Feeling the need to experience the fun of cycling again, Merilin bought a used bike. Unfortunately, it came with some issues with the back wheel and gears which meant it was unusable without repair.

When she took the bike to her nearest bike shop, Bike Town in Rutherglen, she was pleased to learn about the Scotland Cycle Repair Scheme.

The scheme, which is funded by the Scottish Government and delivered by Cycling UK, provides up to £50 of free servicing and repairs at over 330 participating bike shops across Scotland.

women with bike at top of hill

With her bike roadworthy, Merilin is enjoying the sense of freedom and health benefits of cycling once again, cycling to the nearby Pollok Park in the city’s southside when she’s not going to the shops.

“I feel more healthy and there’s the freedom to do the things I want without always having to plan.”

“It’s also great training. I usually go running but sometimes can’t be bothered. If I cycle to the shops I can do two things at once, like shopping and exercise. I live at the top of a hill so that’s very good exercise!”

Merilin says she is happy to have made the switch from car to cycle on some shorter journeys

“I feel less stressed when I cycle, as when you drive you get stressed on busy roads.”