The idea for Peddle My Wheels came from a business I ran that involved selling children's second hand items. It soon became clear there was a high quantity of outgrown, no longer used, children's bikes that people did not know what to do with. I started collecting these bikes and refurbishing and selling them, providing a decent stock of low cost bikes for children and preventing these old bikes going to waste.
This was the start of the pop-up bike markets. Starting with just a couple of markets a month we now run 200 markets a year in 12 London boroughs. In 2017 we introduced a new scheme, Try Before You Bike, which is aimed at getting people cycling who are considering cycling but are not ready to commit to purchasing a bike. It is fully sustainable with any returned bikes being incorporated back into the scheme as 'nearly new' bikes or sold at our second-hand bike markets. This currently operates in four London boroughs.
Although Peddle My Wheels is structured much like a social enterprise, we are actually a private limited company. This is an important distinction as part of our project is to show that business can be self-sustaining and profitable whilst prioritising an environmentally and ethically responsible code of practice. This includes re-investment of profits into ethically and environmentally responsible schemes, restricting shareholder profit share, operating a fair wage scheme and only offering products and services that will have a positive impact on the environment. This is a theme I am particularly interested in and if you have any comments or would like to discuss anything about this or the company's work please email email@example.com