Focus Corner

Participation in Cycle to Work scheme increases by 125%

June 22nd, 2010 by   (View Author Profile)

Green Party Minister for Sustainable Transport Ciaran Cuffe has welcomed new statistics showing a large increase in people taking part in the Cycle to Work scheme. A survey carried out by www.bikescheme.ie shows:

• Cycle to Work Scheme participation has increased by 125% since 2009

• Bike shops report average of 43% of bike sales coming through scheme

• Just under half (49%) of bike scheme sales are coming from the public sector

• Over four fifths of bike shops report a positive effect on their business or cycling in the area

Minister Cuffe said: “These statistics show that thousands of people are making use of the scheme and choosing to cycle to work. I’m delighted that participation is so high and that businesses taking part are reporting positive effects on their own business and in cycling habits in their community.

“As it’s National Bike Week, I’m encouraging everyone to take part; it’s National Cycle to Work Day this Friday and with the current good weather, there’s never been a more opportune time to get on your bike.”

Altitude Bikes in Waterford reported: “It would not be overstating matters to say that the scheme has been the most positive thing to ever happen to our business. We have increased employment directly because of the scheme and it is truly heartening to see so many people on bikes.” Another bike shop in Ennis, Co. Clare said: “The scheme’s keeping the doors open. I was looking at having to let people go. It’s great to see so many bikes on the road too”, while Cyclesuperstore, in Tallaght, Dublin said: “We’ve added at least ten people to our workforce because of it.”

The Cycle to Work scheme was introduced by the Green Party in Government on 1 January 2009. The scheme provides for benefit-in-kind tax relief for employees who purchase a bike through their employer to cycle to work, up to a value of €1,000.

Dublin City Council’s Dublin Bikes Scheme has also reported a significant increase in use. Almost 35,000 people have registered for the scheme and there have been 700,000 bike journeys since it was launched last September. A survey by Dublin City Council shows 40% of those using the Dublin Bikes Scheme combine their journey with other public transport modes.

Background to survey

BikeScheme.ie contacted all 230 bike shops registered with the Office of Public Works. Of those, 46 responses were received. Retailers were asked about their sales under the scheme, the types of companies participating in it, whether they used service provider companies to facilitate the scheme, and suggestions to improve the scheme.

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