Fewer than half the bikes available for hire as part of a new cycling initiative at the University of Lincoln have been taken up.
The student-only scheme was launched at the university in September in a bid to encourage cycling in and around Lincoln. The cycLIN bike scheme is a venture run jointly by the university and the charity Sustrans.
There are 69 bikes for hire, but only 31 are currently being rented. With cycling schemes up and down the country proving to be a success, particularly London’s “Boris bikes”, Lincoln’s take-up rate is disappointing.
Trevor Marsh, the project support officer for cycLIN, said: “We haven’t got to all of the students who want [bikes].”
Whilst bikes were available at the Freshers’ Fayre for first-year students, many second and third year students are unaware of the cycLIN initiative. A “lack of cycling culture” in Lincoln and poor weather were two possible reasons given for the limited interest.
Francesca Mayhew, a student at the University of Lincoln, says that cycling is “the best way to get around Lincoln”, and although she credits the scheme with being “a good idea”, she would consider bringing a bike from home before taking part.
The cost of joining the scheme may also deter students from participating. The hire cost per year stands at £45, plus a £100 deposit that is returned at the end of hire. Kate Gatley, a second-year English student, believes it would be “cheaper to buy a second hand bike”.
The cycLIN venture offers a test ride for any student who is interested in partaking in the scheme, and activities and guided bike rides on Wednesday afternoons for those who sign up to the scheme.
There are also weekly bike workshops held outside the main building where students can bring their bikes, whether rented from cycLIN or otherwise, where students can have their bikes fixed and any cycling related queries answered.
Anyone wishing to get involved with the cycLIN project should email cycLIN@sustrans.org.uk or visit the team on the top floor of the enterprise building.Tweet