Unclaimed and abandoned bicycles from Cambridge railway station bicycle car park are donated to Essex charity and are heading to Africa

PUBLISHED: 10:00 13 June 2020

Representatives from Re-Cycle and Greater Anglia with some of the donated bikes which were abandoned or unclaimed at Cambridge railway station bicycle parking area. The bicycles are now going to the Essex charity and are heading to Africa. Picture: Greater Anglia

Representatives from Re-Cycle and Greater Anglia with some of the donated bikes which were abandoned or unclaimed at Cambridge railway station bicycle parking area. The bicycles are now going to the Essex charity and are heading to Africa. Picture: Greater Anglia

Greater Anglia

Train operator Greater Anglia has donated more than 100 abandoned or unclaimed bicycles from a cycle parking facility at Cambridge railway station to an Essex-based charity which helps people in Africa.

Re-Cycle (Bikes to Africa), based near Colchester, received 60 bikes this month, and 60 earlier this year, after the train operator carried out its annual maintenance programme at Cambridge cycle point.

Re-Cycle takes used bikes and sends them to rural communities in Africa, enriching the lives of those less fortunate, by giving them the gift of independence. The charity also provides training to mechanics on how to service and repair the bikes, enabling a bike to become more sustainable.

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Every year, cyclists in Cambridge are asked to remove any unused bikes from Cambridge cycle point, the three-storey cycle car park next to Cambridge railway station, to allow the area to be deep cleaned. Cycles which are unclaimed after three months are donated to charity.

Mark Ellis, Greater Anglia’s Head of Facilities Management, said: “People living in rural Africa can walk for miles a day to collect water, or to get to school or work. A bike can change someone’s life, and we are pleased to be able to help Re-Cycle with their mission to help people in Africa access sustainable bike transport.”

Claire Kettle, Director of Re-Cycle, said: “The bikes will either be going to our partners in Zambia or Ghana.

“Every year we receive thousands of used bikes at our warehouse which are put to good use instead of ending up in landfill. Since Re-Cycle began sending bikes to Africa in 1998 we have shipped almost 115,000 bikes.”

Cambridge cycle point opened in February 2016, cost £2.5m and has 2850 cycle spaces. It’s the biggest facility of its kind in the country and is free of charge.


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