BARNSLEY businesses have saddled up and taken part in a four week CycleBoost trial aimed at removing the barriers that prevent people from cycling and encouraging people to live a healthier lifestyle.

Twenty-five employees from the Barnsley Digital Media Centre (DMC) and nearby businesses took part in the free cycling support scheme and benefitted from the loan of a bike and cycling accessories, free sessions to learn about route finding, advanced commuter safety skills and general cycling confidence, as well as learning how to fix a puncture.

Staff that took part cycled an impressive 1,160 miles, which is the equivalent of doing 4,667 laps around a 400 metre running track, and saved 362Kg of CO2 emissions*.

Melanie Oldham, Managing Director of Bob’s Business Limited, based at the DMC and a provider of Information and Security eLearning courses, set two staff members a cycle to work challenge and promised to buy them their bike under one condition, they had to stick to it for the whole trail period.

Melanie said: “Dale and Curtis used to complain about the traffic on their journey to work and spent much of the working day sat in front of their computer screens. I’m keen to encourage a work-life balance and used the CycleBoost trial as an incentive to resolve their travel issues and help them to lead a healthier life style.  They both had a positive attitude towards the scheme and it became a competition between them both about who could cycle the most miles.”

Curtis Naylor, aged 21, Business Development Officer, said: “Melanie put forward the idea to take part in the CycleBoost scheme to help improve my journey work and to encourage me to get more fresh air as I sit at my desk for most of the day. I’ve really enjoyed cycling to and from work, my journey is quicker and its boosted my motivation, I feel much fitter and I’ve also saved money. I’m thankful to my manager Melanie for buying my new bike for me. I’m looking forward cycling more often and beating Dale to work.”

CycleBoost in Barnsley is delivered by the Local Sustainable Transport Fund partnership, Inmotion!, on behalf of Barnsley Metropolitan Borough Council. The scheme aims to promote sustainable travel and encourage more people to replace shorter car journeys by travelling by bike.

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