Guest Blog: Cycling to work

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With the weather getting warmer and fuel prices still high… who wants to have a go at cycling to work? Caroline Robinson certainly does.

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If you’re an employee there can be distinct benefits to riding in to work, such as getting your exercise done first thing and enjoying your journey to work more.

However, financial incentives are around to help you get on that bike, too. As an employee you just need to ask your employer if they can initiate the Government ‘Cycle-to-Work’ Scheme. No matter what size the business is, the scheme allows some of your tax to be used in assisting you getting either a bicycle or equipment such as water-proof pannier bags. There are various calculators available that can help you work out if it would be a good deal for you.

What can you do to help your employer be more cycle-friendly?

  1. Do ask if there is somewhere safe to store your bicycle. It may be a courtyard or old shed, but always lock your bike for added security.
  2. Find other employees who would like to join the scheme, share experiences and routes.
  3. Keep areas tidy and store wet clothes out of sight.

And if you’re an employer? Why should we encourage cycling to work?

Financially, healthier workforces perform better and are more likely to be committed to the business than those that don’t use the cycle scheme. Days off sick due to stress and bad backs can be reduced.

Also, critically, it can bring the cost of running your business down through wages, even though there are steep rises in the cost of living. Treat your employees to a bonus without having to increase wages, by asking your accountant and HR team to help implement the scheme.

What can you do to be a more cycle-friendly workplace?

  1. Have a go yourself – a wonderful way to de-stress before and after work.
  2. If you have the facilities to build showers, this would be most appreciated by staff. Or even a clean, decent sized accessible toilet room.
  3. Provide lockers or space to dry wet clothes and storage space out of sight for bicycles.

Enjoy the summer and you never know, when you do start cycling, you might not want to stop!

Other resources:

cycletoworkalliance.org.uk

gov.uk

About the Author:

Caroline Robinson (37) has ridden a bike as a student, an employee and as a soon to be employer. She cycles for work and visits rural businesses all over the country. She can be often spotted in her bumble-bee outfit on her #mapmobile

www.clearmapping.co.uk