As part of our monthly newsletter (you can subscribe here) we have a section called Friend Focus where we highlight the great work that is being undertaken by one (or more) of the many Cycle_Recycle_Icon_mediumorganisations that we work with.

Our latest Friend Focus features three community organisations that we work in partnership with to collect unwanted bicycles from the Council’s recycling centres – The Bike Station Glasgow, Common Wheel and Gorbals Recycles

The collections first started nearly two years ago in partnership with the three organisations and Glasgow City Council Land and Environmental Services. The collections are undertaken on a rota system so that each organisation collects from all four of the recycling centres – Dawsholm in the North, Queenslie in the East, Polmadie in the South and Shieldhall in the West.

Since march this year the collection scheme has seen over 500 bikes collected from the four recycling centres. bout 15% of these are suitable for reuse with a further 20-25% being stripped for usable parts and the rest are sold for scrap.

Although all the organisations use unwanted bicycles the purpose for doing this is slightly different in each case as explained below.

BikeStationGlasgowGlasgow Bike Station is a Glasgow based charity that encourages and promotes good mental and physical health through cycling as a means of transport; aims to advance the education of the public in the safe use of bicycles and their repair; and to protect and preserve the environment for the public benefit by promoting cycling as a means of transport.

The organisation teaches cycle training, bike maintenance and cycle safety to the communities. Glasgow Bike Station refurbishes donated bicycles and sell them at affordable price to the communities with 3 month warranty, Glasgow Bike Station also sells second hand parts, and accessories.

cwheel_logoCommon Wheel is a charity which provides meaningful activity for people with mental illness, through working with bicycles and music. They are currently based at three locations in Glasgow – bicycles at Maryhill and Bridgeton, and music at Gartnavel Royal Hospital.

The Common Wheel bicycle project was officially opened in July 2000 and gained charitable status a year later. Their clients learn how to build and maintain bicycles, and in the process gain self-confidence and self-esteem. The bicycle workshops are run by skilled mechanics who ensure that all work done is of excellent quality. As an integral part of the project, they sell reconditioned bicycles to the public, and carry out servicing and repairs. The revenue from bicycle sales and maintenance helps to keep the project afloat.

The music project was started in 2004. There is a strong emphasis on client participation. The main strands involve work with elderly patients in residential care, and sessions with adults in the community.

gorbalrecyclestransparent2Gorbals Recycles Re-spoke is at the heart of their company services. Founded and based in the Gorbals they provide a full range of services for all cycling enthusiasts. From toddlers to the retired they can provide you with everything you need to get on your bike.

When Gorbals Recycles originally started back in 2004 it was established by a group of local Gorbalites fighting for household recycling bins to be put in place by their local council.  Overtime their aims expanded and they worked to promote recycling within their community through events and work within local schools.  In the summer of 2007 the project opened its first shop selling recycled household goods and clothing alongside refurbishing second hand bikes, all at low cost to the local people.