MH053 Darren Pearce

A team of Meadowhall staff received a healthy boost after gearing up and getting involved with a national cycle to work scheme.

More than 50 employees from the Sheffield shopping centre joined the Government’s £24.6 million Inmotion project, having been inspired by the recent bike boom spreading across Yorkshire following the Tour de France.

Meadowhall staff embraced the new scheme, commuting to work from across the city and further afield and even adding a bit of healthy competition…

A team from the Centre’s Apple Store organised a workplace challenge which saw Matthew Hinton crowned cycle champion after covering an astonishing 334 miles and his colleague Simon Roberts coming in second clocking up 225.

Inmotion, a free cycle support programme for residents and employees aimed at removing the barriers preventing people from cycling, is delivered by representatives from South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) with Barnsley, Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield Councils.

Participants could access the loan of a bike for four weeks, benefit from free support sessions to learn about route finding, advanced commuter safety skills and general cycling confidence, as well as learn how to fix a puncture and look after their bike at free, local Dr Bike maintenance sessions.

Darren Pearce, Meadowhall Centre Director, took advantage of the free Dr Bike sessions to have his bikes checked over by a trained mechanic ahead of the charity cycle ride from Sheffield to Paris which he is undertook earlier this month.

Darren said: “The Dr Bike maintenance sessions are a brilliant and convenient service. I think it’s better than going to a bike shop, as I commute from home to work I need to make sure that my bike is finely tuned, they’ll fix anything minor, on the spot for free and any major issues they let me know and I can take it to a bike shop to be fixed.

“The Inmotion cycle programme has been taken up by more than 50 staff here at Meadowhall – it’s great to see that the Tour de France is having a lasting legacy and encouraging more and more people get on their bikes.”

Hannah Chamberlain, who works at WH Smith within the centre, joined the scheme along with her husband Karl.

Hannah said: “I’ve enjoyed cycling more than I thought I would, I felt apprehensive at first as I haven’t cycled since I was young.

“I decided to take part to save money and due to transport issues as I work shifts there isn’t always a direct bus service that runs at the times I start and finish work. I didn’t feel very confident especially cycling on my own but now that I’ve done the training I feel a lot more confident and am really enjoy my commute.”

The announcement follows thousands of people flocking to Meadowhall to celebrate the Grand Depart earlier this month, with the shopping centre playing host to a full day of family entertainment in honour of the event.

The Centre was ideally located at the finish line of the Yorkshire leg, where the cyclists made a final push up the notoriously steep Jenkin Road.

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