Cycling is the way forward for Stephen

Stephen with his bike

Cycling is the way forward for Stephen

An innovative eBike rental scheme has transformed how one Forth Valley College staff member commutes to work.

Business and Communities Curriculum Manager Stephen Grainger, has taken advantage of the scheme to make big changes to his working day and hopes to inspire his colleagues to do the same.

He said: “I first heard about the e-bike scheme when I made an enquiry about Cyclescheme and the Facilities Team made me aware of the e-bike availability on a loan system.

“I used to travel to work by car on my own and this has absolutely changed my commuting habits. The eBike scheme has encouraged me to start cycling to work.  I never thought it would be possible for me to commute on a bike as I am regularly in other campuses, but it has.”

The e-bike hire scheme allows FVC staff and students to hire the bikes – which also have a battery motor – for a three month period of time.

Stephen continued: “There are various benefits for me. The combination of eBike and eCar has made my commute much more enjoyable.  I am also up earlier in the morning and arrive earlier at work, so get some quiet time at the start of the day to help me plan and organise. It has had a positive impact on my health and well-being and is also good for the environment.

“The opportunity to use an eBike has changed my opinion on cycling in a big way especially in terms of commuting. There have been a couple of days where the weather has meant that taking the car is the safest option but the plan for the year is to increase the number of days commuted on the bike month by month.

“The biggest motivation for me to try an eBike was the time it was taking to get to work due to heavy traffic. Cycling has shaved 15 minutes off my commute on some days. I think my motivation now is simply that commuting by bike is less stressful and much more enjoyable.

“There’s not a chance of me reverting back to my car. Major road-works are planned for around the Falkirk Campus and will continue for five years. I’m glad that I now won’t be sitting in the traffic chaos that this will cause.

“The cycling facilities at Forth Valley College are excellent. There are also cycle to work lockers and there are bike stations for essential repairs, which I had to use last week when I got three punctures in three days!”

Heather Davis, FVC’s Cycle Officer, said: “It has been a pleasure to be able to help Stephen change his commuting habits through the eBike membership scheme and to hear the positive impact this has made on his health and well-being. Stephen also got involved in a bike maintenance session at the Alloa campus allowing him to fix punctures on his own bike and make use of the bike maintenance facilities on offer at FVC.

“It is also great to see that the electric car scheme at the College makes it possible for staff to cycle to work, even if they are required to work between campuses. I would strongly encourage anyone that would like to try the eBike scheme to get in touch with the Facilities team. It is fantastic that Stephen would not think about going back to commuting by car and I hope the scheme can encourage many more people to make the switch to more active and sustainable travel methods.”

For more information on eBike, eCar and cycle facilities available at FVC contact heather.davis@forthvalley.ac.uk

 

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