They may not be to everyone’s taste, but the ubiquitous West Midlands Cycle Hire Scheme, launched earlier this year in Sutton Coldfield by West Midlands Mayor Andry Street, is claimed to be a big success by the town council.
More and more of the green bikes have appeared around the town, including at Four Oaks station and Good Hope hospital as the Midlands wide scheme gathers pace.
The scheme, which is generally welcomed as a boost to fitness and wellbeing, has faced some criticism over the cost with an hour’s ride costing £4.
But Sutton’s council, which is working in partnership with WMCH, says the scheme is very popular with residents and visitors alike, with around 25,000 km – over 15,500 miles – already clocked up.
There arena 50 West Midlands Cycle Hire bikes available in Sutton Coldfield located at seven conveniently placed docking stations:
The bikes can be unlocked and docked at any of the stations and can be used for fun, for example a leisurely ride around Sutton Park, or for commuting.
Users do not need to begin and end at the same docking station; they can begin at one and cycle to another, providing of course there is room at that docking station. There have been reports of bikes being abandoned at various docking stations in Birmingham city centre.
To unlock and hire the bikes, users will need to download the Beryl cycle hire app and register for an account through the Play Store (Android) or App Store (Apple).
Leader of Royal Sutton Coldfield Town Council, Councillor Simon Ward, said: “It has been fantastic to see the enthusiasm for the West Midlands Cycle Hire scheme, delivered by the Town Council alongside WMCA, grow in Sutton Coldfield with many residents and visitors now using the bikes to enjoy our wonderful Royal town.
“Sutton Park Banners Gate already sits within the 10 most popular destinations to hire a bike across the West Midlands. Since March 2021, over 5,000 journeys have been made with over 3,000 being regular and repeat users. There is real appetite among new riders with over 800 in April alone.
“The bikes have enabled residents to enjoy time outdoors and experience the joy of cycling evidenced by an average journey time of 60 minutes. We are so fortunate to have our fantastic park and the bikes provide yet another way to enjoy it in all its glory. The Town Council pledged to put in place a public cycle hire scheme in its early years, and we are delighted to have delivered on this promise.”
Whatever the journey, the West Midlands Cycle Hire bikes in Sutton Coldfield provide a safe, efficient and a practical way to enjoy our town.”
The bike docking stations can be found at:
1. Sutton Park Banners Gate
2. Wyndley Leisure Centre
3. Stonehouse Road (Boldmere Gate Entrance to Sutton Park)
4. The Parade in the Town Centre
5. Four Oaks Train Station
6. Boddington Gardens
7. Good Hope Hospital Rectory Road Entrance
It costs £1 to unlock a bike and then 5p per minute. Here are some ride cost examples:
|10 mins||20 mins||30 mins|
To find out more and register for updates visit the website at https://www.wmcyclehire.co.uk/.