New project urges Burntisland folk to get on their bikes

Jake Orkisz with Yvonne Crombie
Jake Orkisz with Yvonne Crombie

A new bike project in Burntisland is aiming to get people together and improve their health and fitness.

The Freedom Cycling Project, which is being set up through the Toll Centre, is helping to provide people with quality recycled bicycles, teaching them basic bike maintenance and is planning to run cycling sessions to encourage those who may not have ridden a bike since childhood to get back in the saddle.

It is being initiated by Yvonne Crombie, the centre’s development manager, with the help of volunteer Chris Hill, and anyone who is interested in cycling is encouraged to contact the centre to find out more.

You might also be interested in:

McDonald’s opens new Leven drive-thru

A feast of food and drink for Kirkcaldy’s 2019 festival of ideas

Kirkcaldy’s last linen factory to have a role in exclusive show at Edinburgh Castle

Yvonne explained: “When I came into post I was hearing that many people who live in the Castle area of the town and further afield don’t use the centre because it is not easy to get to.

“I thought that if they had bikes they would be more likely to come along to some of our groups and that’s really where the idea started.

“It’s all about getting the community engaged and helping people to feel less isolated.

“Older men in particular are difficult to reach but if they were interested in working with tools and bikes then something like this could encourage them to come along.

“Chris volunteered to help and now we are working on other ideas like getting people who might not normally consider going for a cycle to come along and learn how to do it safely.

“As well as the fitness aspect it will help to bring people together socially, and families could do this together.”

In preparation for the project the centre asked people to donate any unused or unwanted bikes, and in just one week 16 bikes were donated.

These will be checked over and any repairs carried out to make them roadworthy for people to use.

“We have donated our first bike to Jake, our part-time caretaker who was struggling to get in to work.

“We also thought that if children have outgrown their bikes they could bring them along and swap them for a bigger one. There are lots of plans ahead,” added Yvonne.

Jake Orkisz, the recipient of the first bike said: “It’s made a big difference and I can now get around much easier.”