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ON YOUR BIKE

What is the government’s bike repair voucher scheme and how can I claim one?

CYCLISTS are now able to claim a £50 bike repair voucher to encourage more people to cycle.

The move is part of a £2billion initiative to help relieve the pressure on public transport and encourage exercise.

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The £50 repair voucher should help cyclists get back on the road
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The £50 repair voucher should help cyclists get back on the roadCredit: Alamy

What are the vouchers?

The Fix your Bike Voucher Scheme allows Brits to claim a voucher worth up to £50 towards the cost of repairing their bike.

There are 500,000 vouchers available and they can be used to "drag bicycles out of retirement".

Vouchers are given on a first come, first served basis.

The vouchers should typically cover the bill for a standard service and the replacement of a basic components like cables and inner tubes.

But you will have to hurry - the first round of 50,000 vouchers that were released around midnight July 28 went within hours.

The scheme has been so popular that the site crashed.

It was back up just before 4am but was later paused and by 9am the vouchers were no longer available.

Bike owners in England can visit the Energy Saving Trust’s website and register to get the free £50 voucher.

The rest will be put online in stages to help manage capacity across participating stores and prevent mechanics from becoming overwhelmed.

The Energy Saving Trust will then email you a code, which you can either show on your phone or print out and give to the retailer.

There are only 500,000 vouchers up for grabs in total so make sure you apply soon.

The voucher can only be used for repairs at participating businesses, so you can’t buy any bike accessories with it.

Registrations are also open for bike repair businesses who want to be part of the scheme.

The scheme was first announced on May 9 by Transport Secretary Grant Shapps, as part of a £2billion package to encourage walking and cycling.

It was initially believed the scheme would launch in June, before it became mandatory to wear face coverings on public transport.

Shapps also mentioned the scheme again on June 4 during the coronavirus press conference.

How will the voucher scheme works?

Bike owners will need to find a registered bike mechanic and apply for a voucher online.

A map of participating bike shops and mechanics is available here.

They then bring their bike in to be fixed, using the voucher towards the cost.

Brits will then claim the cost of the discount back through the Energy Saving Trust website.

Who will be eligible and how can I apply?

Everyone in England will be able to apply for the scheme but only 500,000 vouchers will be handed out.

You are allowed a maximum of two vouchers per household.

Bike repairers must meet certain criteria including the possession of valid public liability insurance with a minimum cover of £2million.

If you are a bike repairer or want to get your hands on the voucher from 11.45pm on Tuesday, July 28, you can now apply on the Energy Saving Trust website here.

What other help is available to cyclists?

Cycle to work schemes allow employees to buy a new bike tax free.

Your employer must be signed up to the scheme to take part and then you pay off your bike every month from your salary before tax.

For more information you should speak to your employer about how it works.

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