Circular Communities Scotland’s Affordable Access to Bikes Project is proud to present a new case study ‘Working Together to Increase Local Access to Bikes‘.

This case study showcases our member West Lothian Bike Library working together with West Lothian Council, to reduce waste and increase local access to bikes.

West Lothian Bike Library is a not for profit, community interest company, based in Livingston. It supports people to get active and connected through cycling and aims to tackle inequalities in health by making cycling an activity for all, regardless of background, income or ability.

Following lockdown, the library streamlined the process of accessing bikes dumped at West Lothian Council’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) by developing a mutually beneficial partnership with the local authority’s Criminal Justice department and its Unpaid Work Team.

This “win win” relationship reduces waste and increases affordable access to bikes in the Livingston area.

Manager at West Lothian Bike Library David Liddell explained the process: “The Unpaid Work Team have the time, labour and resources to help us out. They go round their recycling centres every week picking up the bikes that they think we can use. They’re able to restore some of the bikes themselves. They give us all the bikes and they take away our scrap. They can segregate and recycle the scrap more effectively and responsibly than we are able to do but we still feel the benefit. They recently bought us ten balance bikes with some of the money they got for the scrap.”

Sarah Smillie and Sean Cumming are Project Officers in the Unpaid Work Team at West Lothian Council. Together with the work supervisors, they’ve supported the partnership.

Sarah said, “The Bike Library is a fantastic local project that helps so many people be active and get around. David is aware that if he needs help with something he can contact us and we will do our best to help out.”

Read the full case study here.

To explore potential HWRC bike reuse collaborations, including any specific funding support available, or to learn more about our Affordable Access to Bikes Project, email our National Bike Reuse Coordinator Chris Sanderson