THE Scottish Government is investing £1 million to support the Cycle Share Fund.

This fund is delivered by Cycling UK and will support bike share schemes which aim to get more people in Scotland cycling by improving access to affordable bikes in an easy and convenient way.

Suzanne Forup, head of development at Cycling UK in Scotland, said: “We’re delighted to be delivering this fund that will provide more opportunities for people to cycle in an affordable and accessible way.

“We know that owning a cycle is not the best option for everyone, so we look forward to supporting a range of schemes that will break down barriers and enable people to feel all the benefits of cycling – financially, for their health, wellbeing and for our environment.”

The fund will give organisations the funds to buy bikes and equipment for schemes which allow people to share, borrow and access bikes if they do not own one already.

It will do this through a range of delivery models, including loan schemes, subscription services, hire schemes, bike libraries and bike shares.

Patrick Harvie, the Minister for Active Travel, said: “I’m pleased to announce the Scottish Government investment of £1 million to support and develop cycle access schemes across the country. This investment demonstrates our commitment to removing barriers to cycling by expanding access.”

Organisations including charities, schools and other workplaces will be eligible to apply for funding to run a cycle share scheme, supported by Cycling UK.

The fund aims to break the barriers to cycling, including the upfront costs of buying a bike, the knowledge needed to purchase and maintain it and the potential lack of secure space to store it.

Harvie visited Bike for Good, a Scottish charity based in the west end of Glasgow, to launch the fund and learn about its existing non-ownership pilot, called "SWITCH UP", a subscription service that offers "hassle-free bike ownership".

Gregory Kinsman-Chauvet, founder and chief executive at Bike for Good, said: “We welcome the Scottish Government's Cycle Share Fund, delivered by Cycling UK. The purpose of the new fund aligns well with Bike for Good's mission to enable people to ride a bike.

“We launched the UK's first impact-led bike subscription service, SWITCH UP. We offer a safe, reliable and easy-to-use bike subscription service so that users are always ready and confident on the road. SWITCH UP users can access a bike, an e-bike or an e-cargo bike at affordable prices, with maintenance, insurance and mobile repairs included.

“Bike for Good is proud to offer this fantastic opportunity to Glasgow and are expanding it across the UK. A significant part of our fleet is committed to supporting low-income individuals.

“With SWITCH UP, we aim to make available a micro-mobility platform that enables people to access a bike as a mode of transportation. Overall, the new fund is a significant step forward for Bike for Good in their mission to make cycling more affordable, accessible, and widespread.”

Harvie added: “For our health, wellbeing and environment – we’re committed to building an active nation and making it easier for people to walk, wheel and cycle for shorter everyday trips.

“That’s why the Scottish Government has committed to spend at least £320m, or 10% of the total transport budget, on active travel by 2024-25.

"Through this, we can bring about more projects like the one Bike for Good in Glasgow is expertly offering.

"Coupled with further investment in infrastructure, we will transform our communities to support the revolution in active travel that we need to see.”