The voice for Social Enterprises & Social Entrepreneurs in Northern Ireland. Connecting, supporting, developing and sustaining vibrant businesses to create social change.

 

Cycle Recycle Newry

When 42 year old Newry man Gerard Hughes started Cycle Recycle in September last year, it was in response to the scenario where bicycles dumped at civic amenity sites were automatically sent to be broken up, when with a little bit of work they could be restored to perfect working order giving pleasure to their new owners for many years to come.

Gerard’s eureka moment happened just after he had retired from the Fire Service after twenty years service and he was up in the Newry Civic Amenity Site trying to think what he would do with himself.

“I saw a kids bike and said to the amenity attendant, can I have that bike, with the plan of doing it up and giving it to a child free of charge and the guy said no, sorry I can’t, we have got to dispose of this, it goes for crushing. That upset me and I went home and thought I’m going to do something about this.”

Gerard who currently works in Daisy Hill Hospital added: “The most annoying bit was that time and time again we’d been to the amenity site and seen bikes there, that in our eyes were perfectly good, they were just going to waste.” That day he set up his business and now Cycle Recycle have a contract with the council to take all their bikes from 8 local amenity sites.

The business started off with one bike, a car and a bike rack which soon developed into having to get a small van and unit premises inWIN. Within a short space of time they had to get a bigger van and larger unit and now as well as the workshop they have a shop in place on site.

At the start it was just Gerard with help from his brother Tony. Now his son Ryan is involved in the business along with three others. As well as bikes originating from the amenity sites Cycle Recycle also receive bikes donated from members of the public and indeed Gerard would much prefer bikes ending up with him than thrown out. “We service them and refurbish them and we supply them back into the community again at an affordable price. The idea behind this is to help people to improve their mental, physical or emotional well-being at a very low cost.”

Being a Newry Wheelers cyclist Gerard especially gets a kick from working on old style racing bikes. Cycle Recycle stock anything from trikes for very young children to BMXs, Mountain Bikes for all ages, ladies bikes, mens bikes, racing bikes and hybrid bikes. It’s not just about bikes, they also work with go karts, basically anything that can physically make you move they take on board.

The business has just moved into sales of bicycle accessories too. Stock includes helmets, tubes, tyres, pumps, lights, high visibility safety wear, bells, bottles and bottle cages and some maintenance items.

Cycle Recycle is a social enterprise and every penny earned goes back into the business. If you have a bicycle to donate or want to buy a bicycle they can be contacted at 077 5972 3623 or visit them at Unit 3, Block C, WIN Business Park, Newry or check out their Facebook Page at www.facebook.com/cyclerecyclenewry

Cycle Recycle Newry