Bike recycling at Bristol Prison showcased on art trail

November 29 2013

A BENEFICIAL project opened its bike recycling workspace at Horfield Prison, as part of the North Bristol Arts Trail.

A BENEFICIAL project opened its bike recycling workspace at Horfield Prison, as part of the North Bristol Arts Trail.
Life Cycle UK gave those on the trail the opportunity to view and purchase bikes which have been refurbished by people from within the prison.
The project showcased bicycle themed artwork from a number of local artists, photographers and craftsmen, from tattooed bikes and laser-etched bike parts, to upcycled products and furniture made from spent parts, such as tires.
Visitors were also able to drop off any unwanted bikes to recycle.
The bikes were priced between £60 and £130, with a few higher quality bikes available to purchase.
Life Cycle UK's Bike Back scheme has been running in partnership with HMP Bristol for three years.
Bicycles, which would have been sent to landfill, are donated to the project, and then given to the prisoners to strip down, clean and refit. Once the bikes have been given a new lease of life, they are then sold at an affordable price to families on low-income.
"It's amazing what a difference bikes can make to people's lives," said Tamar Thompson, training and development manager at Life Cycle UK. "The project is changing lives on the inside as well as the outside."
Poppy Brett, director of the project, added: "We aim to offer the prisoners something really positive and enjoyable to do whilst inside, as well as giving them a valuable opportunity to learn new skills." 
Through Bike Back prisoners gain practical skills, employability skills and increased confidence which can help them find employment after they are released.
Bike Back has secured £300,000 from the Big Lottery Fund, enabling the scheme to continue.