Bike recycling empowering the local community in Kingston

Kingston Eco-op

Project co-ordinator Bart Ricketts (far right) with participants



Kingston Eco-op is a social enterprise based in Kingston upon Thames which offers supported employment skills and training for disabled people and those at risk of social exclusion.

Earlier this year, the outfit was funded by the Community Cycling Fund for London to extend their services on offer to include cycling and bike maintenance.

Working in partnership with the Kingston Community Furniture, the local cycling campaign and the Royal Borough of Kingston, the group has now set up a project for people with learning and mental health disabilities to learn to fix and repairs bikes.

The bikes that are restored in this way, go to the project participants who are also offered free cycle training by the borough Bikeability instructors.

Bart Ricketts, the project co-ordinator is chuffed:

‘This is a great way to empower people to become cyclists so they can improve their health and become more independent for short distance travel…this counts double for people with disabilities who haven’t really cycled before.’

Other projects that the Kingston Eco-op is working on is a partnership with Lush, the beauty product store, to reuse pots which can’t be used again for make-up as plant pots and a book swap scheme at Kingston rail station which is supported by Transition Town Kingston and South West Trains.

For more details, visit the Kingston Eco-op website.