We need an affordable bikes scheme

Dear Messenger

The council are scratching their heads asking why the ofo bike scheme hasn’t worked in Sheffield and I would have thought it was obvious. People desperately need bikes and can’t afford them.

Everyone in my family wants a bike but there isn’t the money at the end of the month to buy one. My stepson had his stolen out of the garden and we can’t afford to replace it. It now costs £4 to get to town and back on the bus from Burngreave. If the whole family wanted to go in town for the day on the bus it would cost us £10, which is way too much on a low income. We would love to go cycling to the shops together, or to a local park, it would be free and it’s a lot more fun and healthy.

Personally I wouldn’t support the return of the ofo bikes. The people that really need an affordable bike hire scheme couldn’t use ofo, it relies on people having a debit card with money available and it could still work out not much cheaper than the bus.

Public transport needs sorting out in Sheffield, as it’s unaffordable and lots of people are stranded because they can’t afford to go anywhere. A not-for-profit bike hire scheme offering longer term loans, or a business which made bikes available at low cost, would make a big difference to people’s quality of life. Cycling should be the healthy option which costs virtually nothing. With traffic congestion and pollution both causing big problems it’s now a necessity which shouldn’t be exploited to make a profit.

Please, Sheffield City Council, hand a contract to a local not for profit who can make it possible for us all to use a bike and provide some jobs for local people. We can do better than this expensive Chinese bike hire scheme.

Local resident (Name and address supplied)

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