A big part of the transition to a carbon neutral economy needs to involve more active and sustainable travel to, from, and around St Andrews. On our agenda is a range of initiatives to upskill people in bike maintenance as well as get them cycling. These are all happening now on near on the horizon. Initiatives include our key worker bike scheme; the adapted cycles trials; and the new round of Silver Velotech bike maintainance courses.

Before we start shouting about these, Transition will be present at the next few St Andrews Farmers Market mornings speaking about our cycling related activities as well. If any the projects in this blog piece interest you, do come down and chat to us in person. We will even have our fabulous bike powered smoothies up and running and some different bikes for you to try. Interested yet?

Come along and see us at the market August 7th, then September 4th. Both from 9am to 1pm. The market is now in Argyll Street car park and there will be lots of lovely local produce to buy.

Free Bike Scheme for Key Workers

We all know that key workers have been crucial in getting us through and supporting in the recovery from COVID-19.  At Transition University of St Andrews, we’re pleased to be supporting key workers in and around the St Andrews community by offering a free, zero-emission and healthy way to travel to and from work in the form of a long term bike loan.

The first group of key workers have collected their bikes this week, with staff from NHS Fife, Fife Council and local care homes receiving a bike, helmet, lock, lights and hi-visibility vest free-of-charge for one year.

We are excited to get this up and running. The pandemic has caused a lot of distress but has softened in part by the efforts and dedication of our key workers: teachers, drivers, nurses, doctors and cleaners, to name a few.

If you are considered a key worker and needing a bike please register to see if you are eligible!

Adapted Cycle Trial

Getting more people cycling also requires consideration for those living with disability who may find bicycles unusable. At Transition, we are working with partners Fabb to provide a free trial of adapted cycles for those living and working in the St Andrews area. The time and dates are:

  • Wednesday 18 August and running every Wednesday until the 6th October (except 1st September)
  • There are three sessions per day (10:30am – 11:30am, 12:30pm – 01:30pm, 02:00pm – 03:00pm) and you are free to attend as many as you like.

For over 60 years, Fabb has been giving disabled children and young people freedom, friendships and fun. Thousands of young people, their families and friends have benefitted from what we do. Thousands of disabled young people across Scotland have been introduced to cycling through Blazing Saddles. This incredible project, formed by Fabb in 2015, gives people the chance to ride unique and bespoke bikes and is designed to give disabled people as much freedom as possible.

People who can’t ride a bike can try a range of adapted bikes through this project gaining confidence, physical activity and a sense of achievement

Silver Velotech

Last on the list is the Silver Velotech course. We are looking to train anyone for free interested in being a qualified cycle mechanic. We are running both a Silver Velotech Course in St Andrews on Saturday and Sunday September 4th and 5th. Duration is two days and class size is between 4 & 6 participants per course. The course usually costs £330 but if you are willing to do volunteer for a couple of sessions or more at Bike Pool – our bike maintenance sessions, then it will be FREE.

Velotech courses are nationally recognised awards that qualify you to work in the cycle industry, but they are also a great way to enhance your own knowledge and skills in cycle maintenance for personal use. The Velotech courses are run by Donald Cameron, of Cycleform Bike Shop in Glasgow and Velotech trainer for Glasgow and West Scotland.

During the course the candidates are shown how to perform each task, then led through the procedure, and finally have to carry out the task unaided to demonstrate that they understand the procedure and can carry it out in a safe and competent manner.

To find out more email Andie Habeshaw. To do the Silver you require a sound knowledge of the anatomy of a bicycle and be able to complete all tasks covered at Bronze, e.g. removing tyres, changing inner tubes, adjusting headsets, indexing gears and setting up all brake types. We are looking into running a Bronze too, so if you are less sure of your skills but still want to get involved please get in touch.