New safety programme to help young cyclists stay safe on the road

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Changes to the county’s popular cycle safety programme could help more children learn how to stay safe out on the roads.

From September, the county council will be changing the way it runs the Bikeability scheme, which provides on-road training to children. The training has previously been co-ordinated on the council’s behalf by four local schools. However, with changes to school involvement, the authority is moving the service in-house.

In addition, for the first time, all schools in the county will be able to arrange to borrow bikes for the training.

Previously, certain schools could ask the instructor to bring spare bikes for those who didn’t have one, but this service was not available in all areas. That meant some children could potentially have missed out if they were unable to bring a bike themselves.

Phil Watt, Bikeability and Cycling Officer, said: “It’s always preferable for children to do the training on their own bike.

“Not only does it make sense for them to use the bike they’ll actually be riding out on the road, but our instructor can also give their bike a health-check to make sure it’s safe.

“However, we realise this isn’t always possible. Under the new-look service, all schools can arrange to borrow bikes from one of our four new cycle hubs.

“That might not be as convenient as having the instructor bring them to you, but we think this is a price worth paying if it means all children will have the opportunity to take part, no matter where they go to school.”

There will be four cycle hubs, one of which will be located at White’s Wood/Mercer’s Wood Academies – Gainsborough.

Bikeability is also offering free courses this summer for 11 to 16-year-olds to learn vital skills helping them to keep safe while cycling on the road.

If any other schools are interested in being a hub or if you would like to enrol on a course email or call 01522 550593.